Piazza San Marco – St Mark’s Square, is the thousand-year-old heart of Venice, Italy, where it is generally known just as “the Piazza”. The Piazza San Marco has been the centre stage for some of the most significant events in the city’s history.
The Piazza San Marco is one of the World’s most visited tourist attractions with its wealth of historic buildings and monuments. Surrounding the Piazza are the Campanile – Bell Tower, the wonderful Basilica, the Palazzo Ducale, the Moor Clock Tower and the Ala Napoleoica, which houses the Museo Correr. Many cafes are situated just off the piazza, one of them is the Caffè Florian, the oldest cafe in Italy which once attracted illustrious visitors such as Giacomo Casanova and Lord Byron.
On 4th November, 1966, the Piazza San Marco was totally submerged in the terrible flooding which came to Venice.
All other urban spaces in the city (except the Piazzetta and the Piazzale Roma) are called “campi” . The Piazzetta is an extension of the Piazza towards the lagoon in its south east corner. The two spaces together form the social, religious and political centre of Venice. A remark usually attributed to Napoleon calls the Piazza San Marco “the drawing room of Europe”.
It is one of the few great urban spaces in Europe where human voices prevail over the sounds of motorized traffic. The Piazza is usually thronged with tourists and photographers and extremely popular with pigeons.
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