Riva degli Schiavoni

Riva degli Schiavoni information

Location
Venice , Italy
Getting there
Ferry: San Zaccaria
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Stretching west from San Marco, this paved boardwalk is one of the world’s great promenades. Schiavoni (literally, ‘Slavs’) refers to the fishermen from Dalmatia who arrived in Venice in medieval times and found this a handy spot for casting their nets. For centuries, vessels would dock and disembark here, the waterfront a Babel of languages, as traders, dignitaries and sailors arrived from ports around the Mediterranean and beyond.

Paolo Veronese’s Feast in the House of Levi , in the Gallerie dell’Accademia , gives you some idea of how the crowd might have looked and dressed, with Turkish, German, North African and Greek merchants wheeling and dealing along the banks. The great poet Petrarch was among those who found lodgings and inspiration at No 4175, east of Rio della Pietà. Now many of the grand old mansions serve as pricey hotels, so you too can bunk here like the merchants of yesteryear.