Words and images © John Rees - January 24th, 2017.
Google 'Venice' and you'll get the usual postcard images of Grand Canal, St. Mark's, beautiful people in Gondolas ... But there are many other faces of Venice that many visitors probably don't see.
I wanted to show a slightly different viewpoint. So this collection of images are what took my eye when I visited in December 2016.
The first set of images are from the Jewish Ghetto area. Established by decree of Doge Leonardo Loredan on March 29, 1516, the ghetto was one of the first places where people were forcibly segregated and surveilled because of religious difference. It's also the oldest Jewish ghetto in the world.
Race laws in Italy in 1938 affected the Jewish community dramatically. After German troops arrived in 1944, Venetian Jews of all ages were gathered in the ghetto’s central campo and from there deported. Most of them never returned. A monument now commemorates this shameful event. Its seven bronze reliefs are dedicated to the six million victims of the Holocaust.
IT'S ALL ABOUT THE CANALS
Venice is a unique city because instead of streets (there are a few) the way off getting around is by gondola or boat. The traffic is busy and so many tourists were armed with the ubiquitous selfie stick!
PLACES TO SEE
St. Mark's Square and Basilica, Campanile di San Marco, Doges Palace (residence of the Doge of Venice, the supreme authority of the former Republic of Venice) and general street life.
But also make sure you get away from the main areas and just wander and keep your eyes open!