Jewish Ghetto (Ghetto Ebraico di Venezia)#11 in Best Things To Do in Venice
- 4.0Food Scene
In 1516, Jews in Venice were forced to move to a small northwestern section of the island. Considered to be the world's first ghetto, residents were only allowed to leave the neighborhood during the day and were then locked up at night and guarded. Today, this area is a part of the Cannaregio sestiere (district) and is filled with restaurants and shops (some offering kosher products), a Jewish museum as well as several synagogues, which are open for touring. Although it's free to wander around the neighborhood – and you might want to do just that – the synagogue tours do cost.
For a deeper understanding of the ghetto's history, recent travelers recommend booking a walking tour through an outfitter like Viator. Several water bus lines stop near the neighborhood, but you can also reach it on foot – it's about a 10-minute walk from the Lista di Spagna. For more information, visit the neighborhood's website.
More Best Things To Do in Venice
#1 St. Mark's Basilica (Basilica di San Marco)
This elaborate church sits on the popular piazza by the same name. The church was built in honor of St. Mark the evangelist, whose remains were stolen from their home in Alexandria, Egypt, and hidden in barrels of pork and cabbage leaves by a couple crafty Venetians, intent on bringing him to rest in Venice.
Crafted from many different styles of architecture, today its opulence shines from nearly every corner – from the four bronze horses that guard the entrance to thousands of square feet of mosaics to the Pala d'Oro. If you look closely at the church's center gable, you can see a statue of St. Mark along with Venice's emblem: a lion with wings.
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