Tuesday, October 25, 2011
Venice, the waterborne city
The second city that the tour-group visited was Venice. Venice is a city in Northern Italy. It is described by Times Online as being one of Europe's most romantic cities.
I looked forward to visiting Venice because it was the birthplace of Antonio Vivaldi, a well-known composer who composed music of the Baroque style. I wonder what was the environment that had inspired Vivaldi to compose many interesting and inspiring works of music such as his popular "The Four Seasons". When I was in Venice, I did not get to hear much music composed by Vivaldi while I was walking along the streets of Venice. The comforting news was that I did managed to hear a string ensemble play some music at a cafe.
One of my friends was my travel companion and room-mate for the tour about Italy. I am thankful that she was patient with my fascination with architecture and Western classical music. Strangely, we must have been one of those few ladies in the group who seemed to have lesser preferences to shop!
Venetian Glass Factory visit
The tour-group was led to a Venetian Glass Factory that produces Murano glass. A skilled glass artist gave us a quick five minutes demonstration of his art and craft of product fine Murano glass art. I learnt that the colours of the Murano glass is achieved by adding oxides and other colouring agent into the glass mixture.
I was told that ruby red coloured Murano glass is possibly the most expensive to produce as gold solution will have to be added into the glass mixture to produce the ruby red colour. If I were to visit Venice again, I will take a closer look at the Murano glass artifacts. They are fine works of art that can serve practical functions.
For 30 euros per person, visitors to Venice could enjoy a ride on the gondola. The gondola is most commonly seen to be transporting tourists. Originally painted in bright colours, the gondolas were decreed by the Senate in 1562 to be painted black to prevent excessive shows of wealth.
Riding on a gondola was an experience to remember. It is worthwhile to experience the ride at least once, and indirectly, encourage the people of Venice to continue the art of gondola rowing. For the locals of Venice, there is a cheaper and equally convenient way to cross the Grand Canal, this is done by taking the traghetti (gondola ferries).
There are still more interesting sights in Venice. Stay tuned for more.
DK Eyewitness Travel: Top 10 Venice. (2011)
DK Eyewitness Travel: Italy (2011)