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- Bridges in Venice
Bridges in Venice
The Floating City, Venice, is one of the most popular vacation spots in the world. There are more bridges in Venice than most cities have highways.
This amazing city has taken Italy’s tourism by storm and claimed the position of one of the most romantic cities, Venice is a delight to visit. Just stepping foot in the city is a unique experience; there’s nowhere else the water engulfs the ground, and cars don’t exist.
Just a simple vacation is beautifully surreal, but Venice isn’t only the city floating on the water; there’s much more to see. One of the things Venice is popular for is a variety of bridges, as the city has over 400!
This city is thus, also attributed as the city of bridges, and if you’re visiting Venice soon, you will definitely encounter at least a dozen. We’ll discuss the famous bridges in Venice, but before we do, let’s talk about the mystical city itself:
How Was Venice Built
Venice’s history is a startling and impressive one; indeed, it is believed by historians that it was first inhabited by Roman and Concordian refugees attempting to flee from their enemies.
The refugees saw that the ground they stood on was prone to flooding and sought to create a place where they wouldn’t be caught easily. Working on this belief, they started constructing wooden buildings under water, firming the ground up till the same foundations gave way to erections of buildings and monuments. This city became the city of Venice.
Is Venice Sinking?
The answer is a yes and a no; don’t worry, it isn’t as confusing as it sounds. Although the city is sinking and often at an alarming rate, the sinking has never come unexpectedly. Because the entire city was built on water, the pressure and weight of the metropolitan pushed down on the water, causing it to approach the surface.
This means that technically, the city sank the moment it began floating, an interesting paradox. However, historians and scientists are united in thinking Venice may as well be the next Atlantis; global warming has given rise to the sinking. But Venetian citizens remain hopeful and in love with their homes.
Bridges In Venice
Now that you’re up to speed on Venice, let’s talk about the interesting phenomenon itself: famous bridges in Venice. Though Venice has 400 bridges, it would take years to give them honorable and well-deserved praise.
However, a few bridges in Venice have either gained popularity by being named in ancient literary and artworks, their area of construction, or their history. Here are the most famous bridges in Venice:
1. The Rialto Bridge in Venice
In Venice, four bridges span across the Grand Canal. The oldest among them is the Rialto Bridge, which was initially constructed as a pontoon bridge. With advancements in traveling and trade, the bridge was soon modified to a sturdier and stronger form, one of its many reconstructions since it was first elected in 1173.
Now, made of stone, the Rialto bridge displays the essence of Renaissance engineering in its structure. In order to create an impressive but practical bridge, the state of Venice held competition for proposals, which was eventually won by Antonio da Ponte, who gave it the structure we see today. Today, the bridge is one of the most popular bridges in Venice. It attracts hundreds of tourists who come to gaze at the architecture and detailed design.
Address: Sestiere San Polo, 30125 Venezia VE, Italy
The Rialto Bridge Fun Facts
● It was starred in Robert Browning’s poem A Toccata of Galuppi’s.
● Interestingly, even Michelangelo is said to be once considered as its designer.
● It has 42 steps on each side and is now in frequent use by trucks.
2. Ponte Della Paglia The Missed Bridge In Venice
This bridge often goes ignored because it neighbors the Bridges of Sighs, and yet it’s also one of the most seen bridges in Venice. Surprised to hear that, right?
Translating to the “Straw Bridge”, Ponte Della Paglia got its name from the time when boats lined with straws would pass through it. This bridge may not be akin to the major famous ones, but it certainly makes Venice a greater city.
Address: 30124 Venice, Metropolitan City of Venice, Italy
The Ponte Della Paglia Bridge in Venice Fun Facts
● From Ponte Della Paglia, the Bridge of Sighs can be seen.
● The Madonna of the Gondoliers is situated on the side of the bridge, a unique and rare depiction.
3. Ponte Della Liberta
Ponte Della Liberta, or the “Liberty Bridge” is a connecting bridge that links the islands of Venice to the mainland. The bridge dates back to the time of Mussolini, who opened it in 1933.
When visiting Venice, tourists and locals often cross the bridge as it is the only one that grants vehicular access to mainland Venice. This rail and road bridge is as beautiful as it is practical; it spans almost 2.40 miles across the water, giving a gorgeous view on the way.
Address: Via Della Libertà, 3, 30121 Venezia VE, Italy
● It was inaugurated with the name Ponte Littorio by Mussolini but was renamed at the end of World War II.
● The bridge leads directly to the historical center of Venice and is the only bridge with such access.
● If you’re an anime lover, you might have recognized the bridge from JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure: Golden Wind, which used the bridge in its background.
4. Saddest Bridge in Venice (Bridge of Sighs)
A Venetian Palace, the Doge’s Palace, connects to a Prison house via Ponte Dei Sospiri or the Bridge of Sighs.
An interesting etymology follows; it is believed the bridge was the frequent and sole hearer of the sighs of prisoners who had to cross in order to be jailed, and the constant wails and moans gave the bridge the name.
Ironically, it is now considered one of the most romantic bridges in Venice, majorly so for its isolated standing and impressive architecture.
Address: P.za San Marco, 1, 30124 Venezia VE, Italy
● The bridge is like the Christmas mistletoe; It is tradition to kiss your loved ones when passing through the bridge.
● Ponte Dei Sospiri was mentioned in Lord Byron’s book Childe Harold’s Pilgrimage and the song Jigsaw by rock band Marillion.
● It was even used as a setting in the 1979 movie ‘A Little Romance’.
5. Ponte Dell’Accademia One of the Smartest Bridges in Venice
Ponte Dell’Accademia or the Academy Bridge is an arch bridge in the Grand Canal and connects San Marco and Dorsoduro.
Initially constructed in steel in 1854 but was soon replaced by a wooden structure in 1933. It is worth visiting the bridge; the wooden structure stands mighty and erect and hovers over the southern end of the Canal.
Address: 30100 Venice, Metropolitan City of Venice, Italy
● When the idea for the bridge was first proposed, the council members laughed and even refused to vote because they thought it would be an absurd idea to have a bridge where the Ponte Dell’Accademia stands today.
● Tourists and Venetians believed the bridge to be a sign of love, after which they often tried attaching love locks to the bridge, but the Venetian government made this attempt unsuccessful.
6. Ponte Degli Scalzi
The third bridge on the Grand Canal, Ponte Degli Scalzi or the Scalzi bridge is the link between Santa Croce and Cannaregio sestiere.
Where it stands today, an Austrian bridge made up of iron stood, but the first structure was demolished, and this stone bridge in Venice came into existence.
If you’re visiting the church of Chiesa Degli Scalzi, you’re definitely going to pass this bridge, and the sight alone makes it a bridge worth visiting.
Address: Ponte degli Scalzi, 30135 Venezia VE, Italy
● On the northern end of the bridge is Chiesa Degli Scalzi (the Church of the Barefoot Monks), which is believed to be the source of etymology.
● It is rumored that the bridge was often used by barefoot monks or worshippers, which gave it the name “Bridge of the Barefoot”.
● Another bridge, Ponte di Calatrava, was built in 2008 next to the Scalzi bridge, but the proximity among the two gained severe criticism from the public, which has now led to the former being a controversial construction in comparison to the latter.
Fun Facts About Venice
Here are some fun facts about Venice:
● Venice is shaped like a fish: The collective group of islands has a streamlined shape, which can be seen with an aerial view. This unintentionally pays homage to the history of the city’s construction.
● First Woman Graduate: The world’s first woman graduate, Elena Lucrezia Cornaro, was a Venetian who did her doctorate in Philosophy and was believed to be fluent in 7 languages!
● Most Famous Church: Venice’s St. Mark’s Basilica is the world’s most famous church.
● The City of Islands: Venice has 100+ islands, which is why it’s known as the city of Islands.
Thomas Tips: Take a walking tour [AFFIL] in venice it is well worth the little you spend get the best prices here or check out our ultimate guide in venice.
It’s already clear by now that Venice’s history can be overwhelming and mind-blowing, and what would be a better way to learn about the history of Venice than taking a walking tour of the city?
The city opens up to several gorgeous islands, without visiting, which would be wasting an opportunity, and if you’re thinking of visiting this romantic place soon, why not go for a walking tour of Venice and enjoy yourself in an idyllic setting?
Besides, the best way to explore the bridges in Venice is by taking a walk across them because you’re definitely going to be passing under a few of them wherever you go, so it’s ideal to take the chance to walk over them (literally).
Venice is a beautiful place that is perfect for taking romantic strolls with your partner and kids marveling at the architectural magnificence of the Venetian bridges.
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