Venice, Italy - gondolas in Grand Canal nearby Rialto Bridge, color photo
© 2011 Fabio Thian. All rights reserved.

#25 You can’t miss this….

• A tour on a gondola is in the wish-list of (almost?) all Venice visitors and it surely is an exciting and unusual experience; a touch of extra folklore can be added by a gondolier singing “O sole mio” which, however, is a traditional melody from Neaples…..In the past, gondolas where used almost only by nobles, rich merchants or high ranking officials; the habit of decorating them to publicly state the wealth and power of owners reached such excesses, that in 16th century authorities decided to ban all colors except black to avoid "any unnecessary display of luxury". That's the origin of the fascinating black finishing that gives them that mysterious and intriguing aspect, and has made these elegant and silent boats worldwide reknown icons.

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