She has many names and you can endearingly call her any of these – La Dominante, Serenissima, Queen of the Adriatic, City of Water, City of Masks, The Floating City, and City of Canals. The question here is what would you choose to call? Maybe you want to give her a new name, something closer to your heart after your visit. She would love that for sure. She is Venice.
As you set out on your journey of discovering her, you need to take a cruiser from the Venice Cruise Terminal. It is here that the meditative seagulls will take a sudden flight and will accompanying you till you reach the island. With the sun willingly crashing into millions of sparkling bits and pieces the water will bring in the scent of the sea. Gently swaying against the Adriatic water the wind will whisper you the words of joy till a picturesque skyline appears near the horizon, like a true Shangri-La for you.
The closer you come the architectural grandeur will stun you. It is said that long piles of woods were driven deep into the ground to form intricate scaffolding structure underneath the water. Joining about 118 islands along with 150 canals on the Venetian lagoon, Venice is a classic example of an engineering masterpiece.
The abundance of floral decors on every shop, buildings and windows will not escape you. It appears as if the riots of colors have become a live canvass. You cannot deny but feel that Venice is indeed the land of flowers, fairies and fantasy.
Take your time to experience the most romantic and famed gondola ride while cruising through turquoise water and a labyrinth of houses along the canals. Gliding down the pulsating veins of the city, go deeper and deeper into her heart and you shall discover a true utopia. Venture into one of the legendary Venetian glass-making factories and watch the delicate yet fierce process of making fascinating figurines that are not only world-renowned but also coveted souvenirs. Let the smell of freshly brewed coffee blending with that of crisp croissant tantalize you. And I am sure there will be elements of admiration in your every step.
Wander along the waterways and you shall find yourself at the vantage point of viewing the ‘Bridge of Sighs.’ Built around 1600, this white limestone enclosed bridge connects the Dogi’s Palace and the Prison. Legend recounts the melancholy tales of the convicted prisoners walking across the bridge towards their fateful destinies and having their last glimpse of the alluring city for one last time.
St. Mark’s Square which forms the hub of Venice and is located in the center is mostly brimming with tourists and local people. It not only houses the famous St. Mark’s Basilica with its Bell Tower but also a number of high-end fashion boutiques, reminding you of the couture culture. Street acts with artists decked up in voluminous gowns, wearing Venetian masks and holding lace umbrellas and live music on the street side cafes will enthrall you.
Soak in the addictive cheerfulness of this spirited city. Make a beautiful memory, for this the land of Shakespeare’s masterpieces ‘Othello’ or ‘The Merchant of Venice,’ a city transcending all ages and times, a city which is a fairy-tale in itself! And yes you can call her anything with love.