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Venice

Venice, located in northern Italy, surrounds a lagoon. Venice is built on over one hundred islands. Venice has about 150, connected by numerous bridges, of which only three cross the main canal. Venice attractions include historic buildings, art galleries and museums, winding streets, canals, piazzas, churches and monasteries. Venice, Italy, is simply stunning and completely unique. Founded more than 1,500 years ago on 117 different islands, Venice is linked by a series of over 150 canals, 400 bridges and many ancient pavements. The historic city centre of Venice is divided into six quarters (sestieri) - Cannaregio, Castello, Dorsoduro, San Marco, San Polo and Santa Croce. All buildings in Venice are supported on slender oak and pine piles (posts) which are driven deep into the ground to create a solid foundation. As the soil is waterlogged, with no free oxygen, the piles remain strong and do not decay.

Venice is one of Italy's top travel cities and a beautiful, romantic destination with many attractions. Its small, traffic-free streets along the winding canals make for great walking. You'll find many magnificent churches and palaces, lively squares, and interesting shops. Venice actually consists of 117 bodies of land connected by more than 400 bridges over its 150 canals. The Grand Canal is like main street, cutting through the center of the city.

Venice is considered among the most beautiful and best preserved cities in the world, unique in the fact that it is the only city in the world built on water. The city has earned the name of La Serenissima, the most serene, as throughout the city’s remarkably stable history Venice favoured neutrality and peace when possible. Today the city’s peaceful atmosphere is due to the complete absence of cars; boats provide the only means of transport along a system of over one hundred and fifty canals. For those who prefer to explore the city on foot, more than 430 bridges connect the canals and streets or calle together.

Venice experiences very high humidity, with hot weather in July and August, the height of summer. Temperatures in summer usually range between 86F to 91F (30C - 33C), dropping in winter to between 32F and 37F (0C - 3C). Due to its location on the Adriatic coast, Venice often experiences thunderstorms and rain showers which, particularly in spring and autumn, tend to cause flooding. Known as the 'acqua alta,' it is best to pack waterproof shoes or boots, to avoid a soaking. April to October is usually the busiest time in Venice, though it is a popular destination year round. Christmas, Easter, Carnival (in February) and the Venice International Film Festival (in August) are also busy periods and winter is perhaps the best time to travel to Venice to avoid crowds.

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