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May 2013

An aerial photo of Venice and the Venetian Lagoon


Cheryl took this aerial photo from a KLM passenger jet after the plane flew out over the Adriatic sea, turned, and crossed the Venetian Lagoon before heading north toward the Alps. We've added captions that describe what you're seeing.

The little white specks in the water are vaporetti, water taxis, and other boats in the navigation channels between Venice's historic center and the islands nearby.

For an even more detailed aerial map of the city's historic center, don't miss our Venice Orientation Map at

A new hotel on Murano: LaGare Hotel Venezia

LaGare Hotel Venezia - Murano

ABOVE: The LaGare Hotel Venezia (right) is directly across from the Murano Museo boat platform, which offers direct waterbus connections to Marco Polo Airport, the Lido di Venezia, and Venice's historic center.

Murano  is famous for its glass factories and shops, but the car-free island (which lies just off Venice in the Venetian Lagoon) has other attractions, too--including historic churches, a superb Glass Museum, and plenty of restaurants with canalside tables. Until recently, Murano had only a handful of tiny hotels, but now there's a brand-new hostelry in town: the four-star LaGare Hotel Venezia, which belongs to the Accor hotel group's design-oriented M Gallery collection.

The 118-room boutique hotel is directly adjacent to the Murano Museo waterbus stop, which is served by Alilaguna Linea Rossa boats from Venice Marco Polo Aiport between the end of April and the beginning of November. You can also walk to the hotel from Alilaguna's year-round Linea Blu stop at Colonna.

For more information about the hotel, see's LaGare Hotel Venezia pages, Venere's LaGare Hotel listing, or the hotel's own site. (You'll probably get the best rate from our discount hotel partners, and Venere, but--as always--we recommend comparing rates to be on the safe side.)

To learn more about the island of Murano, read our illustrated 11-page Murano travel guide.

The paving stones of Venice

A rainy day in Venice, Italy

ABOVE: A rainy day in Venice, Italy.

If you've every found yourself slipping and sliding on wet cobblestones, you'll appreciate one of Venice's least-heralded but most pedestrian-friendly urban features: the use of flat, lightly-textured paving stones that offer good traction underfoot on rainy days.

The same stone is used on many of Venice's 400+ bridges. As a bonus, the city marks the edges of stone steps and canalside pavements with highly-visible strips of white Istrian stone, making it less likely that you'll miss a step or stride inadvertently into a canal.

We don't know who came up with Venice's paving scheme, but urban designers and public-works managers from all over the world could learn a useful lesson by visiting Venice on a rainy day.