Vacationing in Venice, Italy
Venice has long enjoyed a reputation as one of Italy’s foremost
tourist destinations. Located in the region known as ”Veneto” the
city’s geographical map of tight waterways is zipped together
with puzzle-like lagoon islands that border the Adriatic Sea. Spread
out over this lagoon area is the city of Venice. The low-lying area
enjoys a climate that ranges from temperate in the spring and summer
months to cold and uncomfortably damp in the winter. Tourist travel
is brisk during the summer, so travel and sightseeing is easiest in
either spring or fall.
Ancient Venice came under the supreme power of the Roman Empire. The
Roman rule spread over the entire Mediterranean region from 700 BC
until around 500 AD. Though the center of the Roman Empire eventually
became Rome, and the capital of Italy, Roman Emporers nevertheless spent
centuries developing this northeastern area of the country. The area’s coastal
waterways and the large Po river--one of Italy’s largest-- were
attractive to them for the potential they held as a major trade route
into the East and Europe. The hilly, fertile region inland from Venice
also made it possible to develop agriculturally. Instrumental in the
development of wine-making, Ancient Romans saw to it that a wine culture
developed and thrived. Today the region around Venice is one of Italy’s
foremost wine regions. During the Renaissance, Venice became affluent
in arts, culture and exotic trade goods.
Because of Venice’s proximity to the Alps and the countries of
France, Switzerland, and Austria, her political history has been colorful.
The area was an active one during the Crusades. Venice has a long and
unique Jewish history, and has fallen under the reign of both Napoleon
and Austria before ultimately declaring itself the nation of Italy in
the mid 1800’s. Venice has enjoyed the reputation for being relaxed
in its attitudes towards religious tolerance and social diversity.
Perhaps this is why it was a central city during the Renaissance, an
era made famous for its cutting-edge philosophies, art works and political
and social conventions that have gone on to shape most of Western civilization
as we know it.
Today, Venice is the final destination for many and affords easy access
to both the southeastern Alps and sandy Adriatic coastline. The city,
famous for its romanticism, cuisine and characteristic gondolas and waterways,
boasts a thriving economy. Boundless opportunities exist for enjoying
local nightlife and exploring the variety of shopping venues and historic
palaces that meander along the Grand Canal.