Venice aerial photo

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Getting the lay of the land (and water)

Venice's centro storico, or historic center, is a compact and walkable city of about 60,000 people on 118 tiny islands connected by 425 footbridges.

In the aerial photo above, you can see labels for:

  • Adriatic Sea (top left), a branch of the Mediterranean.
  • Lido di Venezia, a long, narrow resort island that protects the Venetian Lagoon from the Adriatic.
  • The Venetian Lagoon, a shallow mixture of fresh water and sea water that is bathed by twice-daily tides from the Adriatic.
  • Giudecca, an island just north of Venice's historic center.
  • Venice (Centro Storico), the main part of the city.
  • The cruise port, which has two parts: Marittima and San Basilio.
  • Tronchetto, a parking island for cars and buses.
  • The Ponte della Libert√†, or bridge to the mainland, which carries both trains and cars.
  • The mainland districts of Mestre and Marghera.
  • Murano (bottom of photo), Venice's glassmaking island.

You'll also see four landmarks numbered in red:

  1. Piazza San Marco (upper left numeral).
  2. Rialto Bridge (lower left numeral).
  3. Piazzale Roma (upper right numeral), Venice's gateway for city buses, airport buses, and taxicabs.
  4. Venezia Santa Lucia Railroad Station (lower right numeral).

Airport locations:

  • Venice Marco Polo Airport is a few kilometers north of Mestre, on the Italian mainland.
  • Treviso Airport, used by Ryanair and several other budget carriers, is on the Italian mainland about 40 km or 25 miles from Venice.

Related pages in this section: