Itinerary: Venice, Burano, Murano, Torcello
Murano, Burano, Torcello: the islands of the Venitian Lagoon
Murano, Burano and Torcello, are the most beautiful islands located in the northern part of the Venetian Lagoon (pic n°1). Here, you will have the opportunity to experience the real Venetian soul. Here, it is still possible to admire and buy handicraft products like "tombolo" (hand- knitted fabrics with complicated decorations) and see some ancient traditions that have survived over the centuries.
All these three islands have their own characteristics:
Murano (pic n°2) is a worldwide famous small island mainly for its magnificent artistic handmade glass items. (pic n°3) An ancient tradition that is still preserved. In the many still existing artisan workshops the artists of glass blowing still now are using the ancient techniques to make many precious glass objects, chandeliers, and murrine, all real works of art, equipped with a trademark that guarantees quality and origin.
You will love Murano's Renaissance-style colorful houses and its characteristic white lighthouse. Similarly to Venice, Murano has its canals and even its own Grand Canal that divides the island into two parts. Along the canals, you will find some remarkable palaces and buildings. Do not miss a visit to the Museum of Glass Art and a little further, to the Basilica of Santa Maria and Donato, founded in the 7th century featuring a beautiful apse with white columns and a mosaic floor dating back to 1140.
Burano (pic n°4) will surprise you with its houses painted with bright colors so that they seem to be like a color palette. Beyond these charming colorful houses, this small island is famous for its art of beautiful handmade lace (pic n°5) a local tradition dating back to the 17th century. There are several shops selling lace, lace tablecloths, and strips and in some of these shops you can even watch how the skillful lace makers work. We also suggest visiting the Burano Lace Museum (Museo del Merletto) where you can admire many masterpieces of the Venetian production between the 16th and the 20th century, among others.
Torcello is one of the first islands in the Venetian lagoon that has been inhabited since the 7th century. Today only a few people live here but it is has become a favorite tourists destination who like this small island, its ancient history, and its peaceful environment after visiting the beautiful but chaotic Venice.
You can find evidence of Torcello's history visiting the Cathedral of Santa Maria Assunta built in the 7th century by the patriarch of Ravenna. It is adorned on the apse and on the inner walls by beautiful Byzantine mosaics on a golden background, among them, the most important mosaic is the "Last Judgement".
Outside the cathedral, you can visit the small Byzantine church of Santa Fosca (pic n°6) and the famous throne of Attila, although the Hun never had occasion to sit on this strange stone.
Over one of Torcello's canal, you will find a stone bridge called with the worrying name of Devil's Bridge. There are many legends handed down about it.
Some pictures of the islands in the Venetian Lagoon:
Venetian Lagoon (pic n°1); Murano (pic n°2); Art Glass of Murano (pic n°3); Burano (pic n°4); Burano, handmade lace (pic n°5); Byzantine church of Santa Fosca (pic n°6)