St. Mark‘s Square and the Bell Tower
St. Mark’s Square in Venice is the setting for a flurry of activity, the world famous carnival being just one of them. Napoleon called the square ’the finest drawing room in Europe‘. Should you ever have the opportunity to climb up the Bell Tower (99 m) you will have the best possible view of St. Mark’s Square, the city and the lagoon. You will also be able to see the two columns bearing the symbols of the former Venetian Empire which are the statue of St. Theodore and the winged lion of St. Mark.
The Doge‘s Palace
The doge was a head of state in Venice who was elected by the council and resided in the Doge’s Palace which was built in the 14th and 15th centuries. Today, the great palace houses wonderful pieces of art from famous Italian masters which the public can admire. LEGO® designers rebuilt this mighty cubic building with its cheerful-looking arcades, a feat which took many hours.
The Bridge of Sighs
The splendor and magnificence of the Doge’s Palace and the thick prison walls of the former state prison are separated by the beautiful Bridge of Sighs. The prisoners were led over this bridge from the dungeons to the palace to appear before the court for their crimes. A certain Mr. Giovanni Giacomo Casanova was once able to escape imprisonment in Venice.
City of Treasures
Lovers of the city Venice see the city as ’one single piece of artwork‘. For centuries, the proud people of Venice called the city ’the Most Serene Republic‘. The lagoon city was once the queen of the Adriatic Sea, with its 117 canals and 118 islands, both large and small. The Republic’s fleet ruled the seas, and lucrative commercial trades and conquests brought the people of Venice unimaginable fortune, of which you can see a little in MINILAND.
St. Mark´s Basilica
St. Mark’s Basilica was built in the 11th century and in addition to being a church is also a place with many secular interests. It was here, for instance, that the election of a new doge was celebrated. Many valuable artifacts were stored here that were captured from the Muslims at sea. St. Mark’s was the best guarded treasure of Venice. St. Mark‘s Basilica was heralded as the most beautiful church in the world, with its shiny golden mosaics on the inside and its five enormous domes on the outside.
Grand Canal and the Rialto Bridge
The Grand Canal is lined by the most magnificent buildings. It is 3,800 m (12,467 ft.) long and 30 to 70 m (98 – 229 ft.) wide and is the city’s prime location. This is where the very rich live along with business owners and descendants of the doge nobility. Up until the 19th century the famous Rialto Bridge was the only place to cross the Grand Canal. The origin of Venice is here with its former financial and entertainment district.
The City of Gondolas
It looks easy, but in reality it is a hard job. The famous gondoliers have to maneuver the gondolas, which are about eleven meters (36 ft.) long, through the narrow canals of the lagoon city. Their passengers are mostly tourists or couples in love who want to enjoy the city‘s romantic flair. Sometimes the city is the destination of honeymooners.
Did you know?
Model builders have unlimited access to more than 1,000 different LEGO® elements in many different colors, and, even though it may not look like it, every LEGO® brick used by the model builders can be bought in a normal LEGO store. If you own enough bricks, you can rebuild MINILAND in its entirety. There are 1,200 different shapes and 19 different colors. Some elements are used in a very creative way. For example, the curly hair on the LEGO figures is made of hinges.