Monday, April 22, 2013

Boats and Canals of Venice, part 1: Canals in Many Sizes, Vaporetti

There are almost no wheels in Venice. No bikes; a few scooters ridden by very young children; wheeled carts and wheelers to deliver goods along streets that are wide enough to accommodate them.
From the train station and car parks onward, one walks or takes a boat: public and private, utility, police, ambulance and hearse, pleasure and business. Whenever one needs to transport something that the rest of us think of a car or truck for, in Venice the job is done by boat.
Easy to say, but to really get a sense of it one has to watch: from bridges, streets and embankments, and from other boats, where every day the range is further revealed.
What follows is a very large post. I've started by showing canals, and then sorted the boats by broad categories. Hope you enjoy this little trip to watery Venice.
The Grand Canal

Embellished posts front many buildings on the Grand Canal. 

Secondary and Smaller Canals
Steps on the Grand Canal

Steps on Torcello

Giudecca Canal
 ...a wide canal that separates Giudecca from the main lagoon.

Vaporetti are the public busses. There are locals and expresses, inter-island lines, day and night routes, summer and winter routes. If you go, buy a pass-3 day or 7 day- if you can stay awhile. Individual rides are expensive, and the vaporetti are very handy.
To board a vaporetto you swipe your pass and enter a covered floating dock. Bigger stops have separate docks for each direction. The system of marking the routes is easy to understand.

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