Tuesday, 24 February 2015

Venice: gondolas and gondoliers

blue empty gondola
blue empty moored gondola
This post is about the gondolas and gondoliers of Venice, these two are obviously linked with each other and traditionally connected to the city of Venice. The gondola is a traditional Venetian rowing, suited to the conditions of rowing in the laguna.
five moored gondolas
five moored gondolas
For centuries the gondolas were the main means of transportation in the Venetian canals. Nowadays they are mainly used for transporting tourists or in regattas.
oar of partly covered gondola
oar of a partly covered gondola
Gondolas are (hand)made using 8 different kinds of wood and are composed of 280 pieces. The oars are made of beech wood. 

queue of gondola traffic
a queue of gondola traffic
We noticed this year that more and more people from the East are using the gondolas for a ride around town.

riding gondola in a quite Venetian canal
gondola in a quite Venetian canal
The profession of gondolier is controlled by a guild, which issues a limited number of 425 licenses. The license is granted after periods of training and apprenticeship, and a major exam which tests knowledge of Venetian history and landmarks, foreign language skills as well as practical skills of handling the gondola in tight spaces of the Venetian canals.
red striped gondolier
red striped gondolier
crowds on the bridges and on the water
crowds on the bridges and on the water
reflecting gondolier
reflecting gondolier
a typical gondola during carnival
a typical gondola during carnival: to be seen or not to be seen
gondola on the Canal Grande
gondola on the Canal Grande
gondolier on the phone
gondolier on the phone
stern of a Venetian gondola
stern of a Venetian gondola
Every detail of the gondola has its own symbolism. The iron prow-head of the gondola is needed to counter balance the weight of the gondolier at the stern and the 'S' shape symbolizes the twists in the Canal Grande.
moored and riding gondolas in front of the Rialto bridge
moored and riding gondolas in front of the Rialto bridge
 
navy blue striped gondolier
navy blue striped gondolier
We went on a gondola ride once about four years ago, it is an experience you need to do once in your life I think as the view to the city is quite different from the water than from the sidewalks. When in Venice, do as the Venetians. Well, the Venetians take the vaporetto, the waterbus. It is a lot less romantic and expensive than a gondola.

Saturday, 21 February 2015

Venice: reflections

reflection of a yellow house in a Venetian canal
I've been back for three days now and I'm enjoying looking back at my photos so much. The only problem is that I took so many that I hardly know where to begin. Of course my friends who joined me on this trip want to see the photos too and I've slowly started to upload them onto my computer and to put them in folders categorized by day.  
reflection of two houses in a Venetian canal
I've already put the photos taken with my pocket camera in a special Venice dropbox so my travel companions can easily access them. The photographs taken with my DLSR are a different matter: I shot them in raw format and need to change them first into jpeg otherwise they will not be able to see them.
reflection of a blue pole in a Venetian canal
reflection of a blue pole in a Venetian canal 
reflection of two houses in a Venetian canal
reflection of two houses in a Venetian canal
Anyways, I've decided to start posting the photos batch by batch and by topic. After scanning my photos I decided to start with reflections because I don't have an awful lot of them and secondly I just love reflections (as you may know by now).
These photos are not posted in any particular order. Just know that the first days were grey and overcast and that the last three days were very sunny. I do hope you enjoy them.
three gondelas and their reflections in a Venetian canal
three gondelas and their reflections in a Venetian canal

part of the Arsenale wall reflected in a Venetian canal
part of the Arsenale wall reflected in a Venetian canal
Our apartment was near the Arsenale, which is an area where in former days the shipping industry was located, as in building ships. The people who worked there were called Arsenalotti. The area is surrounded by a wall and the entrance is still only permitted by people of the Italian navy. Parts of the wharfs are dismantled and refurbished for festival or theatre purposes. On one of our nights we saw a spectacular show of fireworks over there.
reflection of two houses in a Venetian canal
reflection of two houses in a Venetian canal on an overcast day
black and white reflection
black and white reflection
two gondelas and a reflection of a yellow palazzo in Venice
two gondelas and a reflection of a yellow palazzo in Venice
reflection of a peach coloured palazzo in Venice
reflection of a peach coloured palazzo in Venice
oar of a gondolier in Venice
oar of a gondolier in Venice
reflection of the Italian and Venetian flag in a canal
reflection of the Italian and Venetian flag in a canal
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