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Monday, 07 November 2016 15:19

Venice's Great Flood in 1966

The northern Adriatic Sea governs the lagoon of Venice's ecosystem with its tides that enter and exist the lagoon twice a day, approx. every 5 hours and 40 minutes, through three lagoon inlets, reaching two maximums and two minimums.
 
The average range of tides heights in the lagoon is about 1 m. Nevertheless, the tidal level is subject to important variations, above all in relation to astronomical and meteorological factors. When the tide grows to the point of provoking floods in the historic sites of the lagoon, the so-called phenomenon of acqua alta occurs.
 
The most devastating floods that affected Venice and Florence in the last 150 years were on November 4th 1966, exactly 50 years ago.
 
More archive pictures from the 1966 floods at the following links:
 
 
 
 
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Tuesday, 25 October 2016 16:25

Free Walk in Venice - by Isola Tour

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chimneys

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I do not know if it respects the Jewish tradition, certainly it was an attraction to our Guests of Venice who visited the Ghetto with us! Sukkot is a Jewish Festival related to the way the Jewish people lived while wandering in the desert for 40 years (Leviticus 23, 42-43). As they moved from one place to another they built tents or booths, called sukkot, that gave them temporary shelter in the desert. Sukkot is also known as the Festival of Booths and the Feast of Tabernacles. For more information about Sukkot, please visit the site at this link: http://judaism.about.com/od/holidays/a/whatissukkot.htm
 
 
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Building a Sukkah on a Rio close to the Ghetto of Venice
 
Building a Sukkah in the Ghetto October 2016a
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Thursday, 20 October 2016 16:49

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02 Scala Contarini del Bovolo

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Monday, 29 August 2016 07:03

Take care of our Venice!

 

 

Important advice for tourists



Venice is a city utterly over-run by tourists. But Venice is also home to thousands of people going about their everyday business (and they're not all dependent on tourists for their livelihoods). So visitors should bear in mind that that is what they are - visitors - and make an effort to behave appropriately.

Plaintive little pleas from the council are plastered around the tourist sights urging tourists to behave with decorum. There is even a new awareness-raising 'decorum week' with a parade of boats down the Grand Canal. And the threat of fines for picnickers and bare-chested men. I won't advise you not to drop litter; that goes without saying. But some local 'rules' of behaviour are less obvious so I've done my best to come up with some advice that will help you to give tourists a good name.

Walk on the right

This is the norm in Italy, and in several other countries too. Visitors from the UK, where we favour freestyle walking, can take a long time to tumble to this. In Venice, where the narrow lanes are thoroughfares used by all, tourists and busy locals, this is absolutely vital. You should keep to the right, always allowing room for others to pass (stick to single file when necessary). Keep to a brisk pace on busy paths. If you want to stop to look in a shop window or consult your map, pull in, removing yourself from the stream of traffic just as you would if you were driving. Spare a few moments to imagine what it must be like for those who have to take these tourist routes every day to get to their office or run urgent errands.

Don't block bridges and don't picnic

On a similar note, don't obstruct bridges. If you must stop on a narrow bridge to admire the view (and in picturesque areas, it's hard not to), keep out of the way and don't cause a traffic jam. Do not sit on bridges to eat your lunch unless you want to infuriate hundreds of passers-by. Public picnicking, incidentally, is frowned on in general and in some areas it's banned. From time to time the police threaten to fine people attempting to eat in public places around St. Mark's Square; I've seen picnickers being moved on. Try to find an out-of-the-way spot where you can sit decorously on a bench.

Boat etiquette

And next, be considerate on boats. Venice's ferries get very crowded. Boatmen will often urge passengers to move forwards ('avanti!') and to find space inside the boat. Tourists who hang around near the gangplanks will prevent other passengers from getting on and off, and will win themselves no friends. Don't be too worried about getting through the crowds when you reach your stop. Once your ferry has moved off from the preceding stop, head for the exit, uttering a firm 'permesso' when you need to pass someone. Take off your rucksack when you're on a boat.

Dress decently

This is necessary if you want to enter churches or monuments. Women and men should basically be covered from the collar-bone to the knee, or as near as possible. Shorts and bare shoulders will give offence and may result in you being barred from religious sites, though a scarf or sarong can save the day. I've seen tourists with sleeveless tops turned away after queuing at St. Mark's.

Don't dress for the seaside. If you're visiting the beaches at the Lido, by all means (un)dress appropriately. But away from the sea, Italian men do not go bare-chested, and both men and women tend to cover themselves up more than the British or Americans. (Women often dress provocatively but not in a whole-expanse-of-skin way like Anglo-Saxons). Some Italian towns are so offended by scantily-clad tourists that they have introduced by-laws banning bikinis and bare chests on the streets. Venice joined them in 2007: men - if you go bare-chested you will offend other people and you could get hit by a big fine.

Be polite

It’s only good manners to learn a few phrases in Italian - at the very least, you should master 'please', 'thank you' and 'do you speak English?'. 

 

Thank you : Italy Heaven

 

 

welcome veneice. www.freewalkinvenice.org original free tour venice

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Thursday, 25 August 2016 09:13

JOIN US as a local greeter!

Do you want to be part of our team?

The FREE WALK IN VENICE is run by ISOLA TOUR, an association dedicated to the spreading of knowledge in various fields of culture. Guided tours are just one of the ways by which we spread our work.

Our Free Walk in Venice - tours are established as an activity responsible for promoting the 'Free Tour' concept and opromising you that you will get the very best tour every single time.

In Venice we take the matter of Quality very seriously. We hold masters and PHD degrees in sociology, anthropology, history .... you simply cant find a better team....

 

Are you licensed and want to be part of this project ? Send us an email to : This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

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Monday, 22 August 2016 14:07

Do you know the Fortuny Museum?

  Palazzo Fortuny is a Gothic palazzo in the San Marco district of Venice. It's a fifteenth-century building, once the property of the Pesaro family, and also known as Palazzo Pesaro degli Orfei. It's an imposing building and largely unrestored, its shabbiness giving it a real sense of history. At the beginning of the twentieth century it belonged to Spanish fashion designer Mariano Fortuny, also a photographer, artst and the inventor of a successful method for printing luxurious fabrics.

Although it comes under the umbrella of the Venice Civic Museums, Palazzo Fortuny does not currently have permanent displays, and is open only when a special exhibition is taking place. The two piano nobile floors, with lofty reception rooms, Gothic windows and rooftop views are lovely spaces, decorated with a clutter of Fortuny fabrics, paintings and objets d'art as well as temporary exhibits. You can see the environment in which Fortuny worked as well as admiring the evocative state of the building itself, with its faded fragments of fresco, carved beams, external staircase, loggia and small courtyard.

Mariano Fortuny equipped the palace to be an atelier; employing the large rooms as an exhibition space as well as a workplace, for his varied interests: photography and painting as well as fabrics and fashion. In 1956, a few years after the designer's death, his widow donated the building to the city of Venice.

There is still a Fortuny factory and showroom on the Giudecca where you can buy incredibly expensive fabrics printed with Fortuny's special techniques.

Palazzo Fortuny is near the Sant' Angelo vaporetto stop. It's rather hard to find, being hidden between the main Rialto - Accademia thoroughfare and the Grand Canal. The front entrance is in Campo San Beneto , and can be reached by taking a right turn (look out for the small sign) between Campo Manin and Campo Sant'Angelo. Opening times and admission charges depend on the current exhibition; check for discounts (Venice card holders, over-65s, students etc.) and note that the last admission is usually an hour before closing time.

 

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 fortuny www.freewalkinvenice.org tour venice 1fortuny www.freewalkinvenice.org tour venice fortuny www.freewalkinvenice.org tour venice 2

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Wednesday, 17 August 2016 21:52

Piazza San Marco - where is the fountain?

 

Aren't you very surprised to see this photo showing a fountain in the Piazza San Marco?! 

 
It turns out that the temporary fountain was constructed on the 23rd of June in 1884,to mark the opening of the aqueduct. The arrival of piped freshwater from the mainland finally brought an end to the city's reliance on collecting rainwater. 
 
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Old photo Piazza San Marco fountain WWW.FREEWALKINVENICE.ORG
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Wednesday, 03 August 2016 18:35

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Wednesday, 06 July 2016 01:51

Chimneys in Venice!

 

If you have three full days to explore Venice, you encountered a delight you’d never read about in any of the many accounts of the city’s history you’d perused, a wonderful legacy of the craft workers who built the city!

Apparently the masons who built Venice brick by brick took special delight in adding a unique fillip to the designs of some of the greatest architects of the age, literally crowning their creations with an extravagant array of chimneys, each unique in its own way.

Venice has about 7,000 chimneys! The chimneys — from the funnel-shaped to those that resemble a twisted pasta noodle — come in 10 different styles. If you’re wondering why anyone would count them all, it’s because they’re part of Venice’s fascinating architectural heritage…could be possible to make a walking tour just to search them!

A distinct architectural characteristic of Venice is found in its chimneys. Try walking around Venice with your nose in the air and you will see an intriguing skyline, punctuated by chimneys of various strange sizes and shapes. These are the same chimneys that can be seen in paintings by Carpaccio and Canaletto among others, and form a vital element of this incredible city’s character, topping off the elegant palaces like so many party hats. There is a practical reason for their odd shapes, however. Their peculiar forms prevent the escape of sparks into the air by whirling them around their inner walls until they fall, spent, to a collecting space at the base of the chimney. A necessary measure in a city that uses abundant amounts of wood in its palazzi!

 

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chimneys

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