A short boat ride took me to the island of the "floating church" San Giorgio Maggiore, and my initial plan was to visit the church and its bell tower. I call San Giorgio Maggiore the floating church because the church's imposing architecture and its position near the edge of the island give us the illusion that the church is floating on the water. The impressive architecture of this 16th-century Benedictine church was designed by the famous architect Andrea Palladio (1508 - 1580). The white marble facade stands out marvelously from the blue sea.
After marveling at the elegant interior and Tintoretto's masterpieces, I bought a ticket to visit the bell tower (It was 6 euros for adults and 4 euros for students). Luckily, there was a lift taking me straight to the top, so it was a super easy journey compared to many other towers that I had climbed. The Venetian views from the top were definitely worth the money, and I went around the bell tower more than once to enjoy every single view.
Feeling satisfied with the panoramic view, I wandered around the island without any more expectations. But then I found out that the island had a great amount of jasmine, which was in season in May, and the smell was divine. Not only was the nature free to enjoy, but some ongoing contemporary exhibitions on the island were also free to enter. The glass art exhibition at Le Stanze del Vetro provided a new perspective on glass as an artistic material.
Finally, I have a tip for you if you have plenty of time in Venice - that is to buy a Venice pass for public transport and make the most out of it by visiting as many Venice Lagoon Islands as possible - some of them are Murano, Burano, Torcello, and San Michele. My personal favorite is the island Burano, which is full of colorful houses. Still want more insights on where to find off-the-beaten-path experiences in Venice? Check out our editor Joe Thorpe's story: A different side of Venice.
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