Venice Facts and Tidbits
Worst & best times to come
July and August are the worst – it can be unbearably hot. May to mid-June and September to mid-October are the best times.
An average of 50,000 tourists per day visit the historic center.
Only about 60,000 Venetians live in the historic center. Most – including tourism workers – live on the mainland.
The city has 118 islands and more than 150 canals and 400 bridges.
Hotel and dining prices are among the highest in Italy.
Restaurant food and service quality tend to be among the most disappointing in Italy. The main reason is most diners are tourists and most of them will never return to Venice. Therefore, pleasing them is not a priority.
The historic center buildings, both big and small, were constructed over spongy marshland ground. Countless wooden pilings were driven centuries ago into the marshland terrain for support.
The Acqua Alta (“high water”) tides can rise up to 2 meters (6 feet). They flood the low-lying areas, including St Mark’s Square. The nastiest Acqua Altas occur from November to March. Partially due to these tides, Venice is gradually sinking. A colossal dam system is currently being built to block the Acqua Alta tides.
Most famous Venetians
Marco Polo is number one. Next come the opera composer Antonio Vivaldi and the great lover Casanova. St Mark is buried here.
History in brief
Venice was named after the ancient Veneti people. The area wasn’t significantly settled until around the 5th century. Venice was the major Mediterranean maritime power in the 14th to 16th centuries.