Tourists enjoying the sights of Piazza San Marco (Saint Mark’s Square), the principal square of Venice, Italy.
The range of buildings at the back of the shot (South side) are known as the Procuratie Nuove. At the right of the shot (West end), is the building erected under Napoleon and known as the Ala Napoleonica (the Napoleonic Wing) of the Procuratie, now the entrance to the Correr Museum. The museum extends down the south side on the upper floors of the Procuratie Nuove. The ground floor of these buildings is occupied by shops and cafés, including the long established Caffè Florian on the south side and Gran Caffè Quadri on the north side, whose orchestras often take it in turns to play.
As the central landmark and gathering place for Venice, Piazza San Marco is extremely popular with tourists, photographers, and Venetian pigeons.
The Piazza originated in the 9th century as a small area in front of the original St Mark’s Basilica. It was enlarged to its present size and shape in 1177, when the Rio Batario, which had bounded it to the west, and a dock, which had isolated the Doge’s Palace from the square, were filled in. The rearrangement was for the meeting of Pope Alexander III and the Emperor Frederick Barbarossa.
The whole of Venice and its Lagoon is designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Single RAW image Tonemapped in Photomatix Pro.
Camera: Canon EOS 450D (Digital Rebel XSi in the USA)
Lens: Sigma 18-200mm