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San Giorgio Maggiore, what to visit and to do in the Island.

Updated: Jul 27, 2021


 

Some of you may have happened, while traveling to Venice, to photograph the wonderful panorama that stands out in front of the historic Piazza San Marco and to notice there, in the luminous basin of San Marco, the islands of Giudecca and San Giorgio Maggiore.


The island of San Giorgio Maggiore is the smaller of the two and is a few tens of meters from the Giudecca Island: it is a magical and silent place, far from the tourist itineraries and, for this reason, it maintains its ancient charm intact, whose roots can be found in the distant 10th century, when the Benedictine monks founded the first convent with an adjacent church here.


Do not be fooled by the small size of the island because, in reality, it is a small and precious treasure chest rich in history, art and culture ... but once you get to the island of San Giorgio in Venice, what to see?


We advise you to start your visit from the Basilica, built entirely in Renaissance style on a project by the great master Palladio towards the end of the 16th century. Do not miss the imposing high altar inside, by Girolamo Campagna and the two great works by Tintoretto: the 'Last Supper' and the 'Gathering of Manna'. The painting 'Virgin and Child with Saints' by Sebastiano Ricci, considered one of the masterpieces of San Giorgio Maggiore, is also of very high artistic value.


If you have been to the top of the San Marco bell tower to admire the fabulous view of Venice from above, you cannot give up climbing the bell tower of this incredible island. From the belfry you can enjoy a breathtaking and unusual view of the city and its lagoon in total tranquility. Today's bell tower, 75 meters high, dates back to 1791 and was built in the style of the tower of San Marco.


Definitely worth a visit to the former Benedictine convent, now home to the renowned Cini Foundation which hosts numerous exhibitions, events and concerts. The rear of the two cloisters was started by Andrea Palladio and completed by Baldassarre Longhena. The monumental complex of the Cini Foundation is accessible through interesting guided tours available every day of the week: you can admire the Palladian cloister and cenacle, the Staircase and the Longhena Library, the Borges labyrinth, the Bosco dei Cipressi and many other hidden places. !


How to reach this island rich in history, art and spirituality? Obviously by vaporetto! Buy your ticket for Venetian public transport online and enjoy the journey: line 2 from Piazzale Roma, the railway station or from San Marco - 'San Zaccaria' stop.






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