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48 hours in Venice – the 8 sights you must see

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAVenice has strong claims to be the most beautiful, most romantic and most interesting city in the world. It is like nowhere else. If you are making a short visit to Venice then here are some recommendations for what you must see on your trip.

1. St Marks Square and the Basilica of St Marks. It is really as wonderful as it looks on the postcards. Stroll the square, drink in the atmosphere and enjoy a coffee at Caffe Florian before or after braving the Basilica. Get there early. The long lines are a pain but it is worth the wait to see one of the world’s greatest medieval buildings.

2. Museo Civico Correr. On the other side of the square from the Basilica is this treasure store with a library that will take your breath away.

3. Palazzo Ducale. The palace of the doges is a wonderful gothic building with many wonderful things including paintings by Tintoretto and Veronese. There is also the famous bridge of sighs.

4. A trip down the Grand Canal. Take a break from the museums for a trip down this fabulous waterway. It is the best way to see the wonderful palaces that line the canal. A vaporetto will do fine and is much cheaper than a water taxi. If you want the full experience take a gondola but it is expensive.

5. Cross the Rialto bridge and explore the Rialto markets. Walk over the famous bridge, take in the sights and sounds of the Grand Canal and then visit this lively market and watch the Venetians barter in the food and fish stalls.

6. Santa Maria Formosa. Just one of a selection of amazing churches, Santa Maria Formosa is in a wonderful little piazza. It contains great paintings and a mix of Renaissance and Byzantine architecture.

7. Ca’ Rezzonico. Experience what one of the great houses would have looked like in the 18th century. This wonderful gallery is packed with fine art including works by Canaletto, Tiepolo and Guardi.

8. Scuola Grande di San Rocco. This magnificent building contains impressive rooms and 54 colossal Tintoretto paintings.

Take time to walk the city. Go to one of the many classical concerts held in the evenings in churches. Finally here are a couple of inexpensive but tasty restaurants – Aciugheta on Campo Santi Filippo e Giacomo, Assassini on Rio Terra dei Assassini. Relish your time in this fabulous corner of Italy.

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