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Venice is a magical city built on water. It marble palaces and labyrinthine streets disappear at the whim of the tides. Just like the world famous Venice Carnevale, it thrives on mystery and awe. Discover the secret passageways of Gothic Palazzo Ducale. The 17th century Basilica di Santa Maria della Salute.

During the day bars put on lavish spreads of Venetian tapas. Make sure though you save room for a proper sit-down Venetian meal with lagoon seafood. You can then enjoy the views at canal side bistros and toast with Prosecco. The central square, Piazza San Marco contains St. Mark’s Basilica,tiled with Byzantine mosaics. The Campanile bell tower offers views of the city’s red roofs.

In 1592 Antonio da Ponte’s built the Ponte Di Rialto. It took three years to construct and cost 250,000 gold ducats. It was adorned with stone reliefs depicting St Mark, St Theodore and the Annunciation. The bridge crosses the Grand Canal at its narrowest point, connecting the neighbourhoods of San Polo and San Marco.

Eyeglasses, platform shoes and uncorseted dresses were outlandish Venetian fashions. Critics of the day sniffed they would never be worn by respectable Europeans. The city was excommunicated for ignoring such bans, but when Venice withheld its taxes, Rome gave in. The many artistic triumphs of Venice over censorship now grace the magnificent Gallerie dell’Accademia.