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immagine didascalia

Sestiere Castello.


immagine didascalia

Entry at the Arsenale.


immagine didascalia

Bridge of Sighs.



Sestiere of Castello

The sestiere of Castello (until the Early Middle Ages called "Olivolo", after one of the islands on which it is built) is one of the most popular and populated quarters of Venice. Its name came from an old defence structure, of which no traces are left. To the East, Castello is the largest district in terms of surface area and is bordered on the West by Cannaregio and San Marco and includes the island of Lido in the South.

Its layout is dictated by the Arsenale, Europe’s largest Mediaeval “factory” where ships were built and serviced, now the property of the Italian Navy. As a result, Castello contains large areas of housing for the workers (the Arsenale employed some 30,000 during Venice’s Golden Age). The eastern side of Castello is, on the other hand, full of open spaces: the large public gardens created under Napoleon, surrounded by many fabulous palaces from the 1800s and early 1900s.

Castello contains many important artistic and historical sites, such as the Bridge of Sighs that, like the Ponte della Paglia ("Bridge of Straw"), links Castello to the sestiere of San Marco, the Church of San Zaccaria, the stupendous Basilica dei Santi Giovanni e Paolo in the North, the church of San Pietro with the so-called Throne of St. Peter, the Riva degli Schiavoni that hugs the southern coast of the lagoon, the Scuola di San Giorgio degli Schiavoni and the Scuola Grande di San Marco, now the city’s main hospital.


1100 - 1200  -   - rev. 0.1.7

Venice and its lagoons

World Heritage, a dialogue between cultures: which future?

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