VENICE (1 of 3): A city with no cars – visited during the Regata Storica

The next day we were off to see Venice in the daytime. It was a Sunday and we were again dropped off in Piazza Roma. The Italian word piazza refers to a plaza or square, hence Piazza Roma is a large square with parking bays for transit buses, airport buses, and land taxis. Instead of buying a ticket straight away, we had a look around the square and its surroundings.

Piazza Roma on a Sunday morning

Not all in Venice is old though, we saw this modern looking pedestrian bridge that is meant to link locals and tourists coming in from the rail station in Sta. Lucia to the bus station in Piazza Roma or vice versa.
A vaporetto under the Calatrava Bridge

This is a water taxi called vaporetto (a much clearer photo than the night before), and the modern-looking Calatrava bridge.
Closer look at Calatrava Bridge

The bridge has glass steps on the sides and a central paved section in the middle. This bridge is quite controversial though. And lots of complaints about this that could even warrant another blog post. But I wouldn’t go into that, suffice to say that there is always good and bad with everything, and Venice is not immune to that.
As we already know the place to buy tickets from the night before, we didn’t have to ask someone this time. We bought tickets for a vaporetto and boarded one that had a sign that said San Marco, this time though instead of going to the main canal, it took another route which we didn’t mind at all as it means that we can see a different view from what we saw last night.
Here’s another shot at the waterways at Piazza Roma this time on a Sunday morning

A cruise ship docked in Venice

Coming in to San Marco we saw two cruise ships. This is one. I marveled though about how deep the water must be for a ship this size to dock so close to the city. My second thought was how crowded Venice is with all these people that the ships brought in. I was unaware that today was also the day for Regata Storica (Historic Regatta).
Venice has lots of rowing races but this is like the main event. Apparently rowing as a sport has been practiced for thousands of years in Venice but this particular event is known for the spectacular historical water parade before the event. It’s more like a pageant really. People and boats dressed up in period costumes.
Rialto Bridge

The Rialto Bridge – is one of the four bridges that span the Grand Canal in Venice. It is the oldest bridge across the canal, and was the dividing line for the districts of San Marco and San Polo. This is what Rialto Bridge looks like before the Regatta starts, plenty of tourists having a look from the bridge and in the shops at the bridge. Yes, you read it right there are shops, lots of them in the bridge!
We joined the throng of people at the Rialto Bridge and took this photo of the Grand Canal before the bridge got closed off when the event started.

I will stop here for now, more of Venice in my next post.
Other posts about ITALY:
LAKE COMO – day trip and transport strike (1 of 2)
LAKE COMO – day trip and transport strike (2 of 2)
A night out in VENICE
VENICE (1 of 3): A city with no cars – visited during the Regata Storica —>You are here
VENICE (2 of 3): St Mark’s Square –Where everyone goes
VENICE (3 of 3): Gelatos and Masks
Travel Photo of the Week 8
Travel Photo of the Week 13
Text & Photos by Alicia Davis

3 thoughts on “VENICE (1 of 3): A city with no cars – visited during the Regata Storica”

  1. Pingback: A night out in VENICE | Steps on Air
  2. Hello, I read your blog re: visiting Venice on day of Regatta Storica. We will be coming via train from Milan and arriving at 3:00 in the afternoon on this day. We have a flat down near St. Marks. Since transportation is closed on Grand Canal, can we still take a vaporetta around the island to get to our destination/flat? Also, what time does the costume/historical part of the parade begin? We are trying to time it to arrive for that and don’t know where is begins or when it starts. Are we taking a chance not getting a vaporetto to our flat on that Sunday of Regatta Historica? A little bit nervous about this. Thank you

    1. Hi Debbie, When we were there, we still managed to ride a vaporetto in the morning before the canal was closed off. I think around 8.30 or 9am the parade started. There were some competition and around lunch time the costume/historical part begun. At around 5pm the canal was still closed and we had to walk all the way to Piazza Roma.

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