Location: The Grand Canal (Canal Grande) is the major water-traffic corridor of Venice. With its large reverse-S shape, it divides the central districts of the city. Leading at one end into the lagoon near the Santa Lucia railway station and at the other end into Saint Mark Basin, it is crowded with water buses, taxis and gondolas. Its banks are lined with almost 200 buildings, ranging from the 13th to the 18th century, showing the richness of noble Venetian families, and still representing the pride and the uniqueness of Venice. Four bridges cross the canal: the Rialto Bridge, the Ponte degli Scalzi, the Ponte dell’Accademia (from wich I took this picture), and the new Ponte della Costituzione, by Santiago Calatrava.
What to shot: From Ponte dell’Accademia you’ll have a vantage point toward part of the Grand Canal with its pompous buildings, the church of Santa Maria della Salute, and Punta della Dogana, where the water of the Canal Grande meets Saint Mark Basin’s ones.
Ideal time to shot: Be prepared to get up early in the morning to capture your best shots of this view, since the sun will rise just behind the church of Santa Maria della Salute. Being there at dawn is an unforgettable experience, beyond the best way to catch the misty atmosphere of the city and the finest colors of the sky.
If you are aiming at the crowded Canal and at its peculiar traffic, made out of water buses, gondolas and work boats, any time of the day will do for you.
Gear: Wide angle lenses are ideal for creating very wide panoramas, while standard zooms (24-105mm) give you the widest range of possibilities, from panoramas to isolating the buildings or capturing the action on board of the gondolas.
How to get there: By foot is just a short walk (10 to 15 minutes) both from St. Mark Square and from the railway station.
Coordinates: 45°25′54″N 12°19′44″E