Tourists Could Destroy Venice If Floods Don’t First.
At summer’s end, the Venice Film Festival turns the sleepy Lido into a mini Hollywood. Venice is a unique, magical place 365 days a year. But much of the time you’ll be sharing that magic with thousands of other visitors. Numbers peak in summer, despite the heat, humidity and swarms of mosquitoes. Spring and autumn are much more pleasant months, especially late autumn (mid-October to mid-November) when it can still be warm enough to eat outside. But a favourite season for many is winter, a time of misty vistas when tourists are few and far between, rooms are cheap and the city is reclaimed by Venetians. An exception is Carnevale, in the two weeks leading up to Shrove Tuesday (Feb/Mar), which brings in hordes of revellers and sends accommodation prices through the roof. Other regular annual events include the June-November Art Biennale (odd years) and Architecture Biennale (even years), the Film Festival (10 days end of August to early September) and local festivities like the Festa del Redentore on the third weekend in July, when the city and lagoon are lit up by fireworks. This ancient city built in the 10th century B.C. on a lagoon, with a declining population of around 54,000, is fast sinking, and this article argues that it is in danger of loosing its soul if nothing is done to save its heritage for Venetians.
Credit: Anne Hanley for The Telegraph
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