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Gondolas and Hats in Dorsoduro

Dorsoduro, ‘the hard-back’, stands on tougher clay than the rest of Venice, perhaps the added smidgeon of security that encouraged the Venetians to entrust some of their most elaborate palaces and finest art to this neighbourhood, and perhaps why even today it has the lion's share of art museums.

Its eastern ‘hook’, tipped by the Dogana di Mare, is the city’s most exclusive area, where the palaces, many bought up by the insatiable Milanese and foreigners, are in very good nick; others contain small galleries and shops selling art supplies.

The Zattere, running the length of Dorsoduro along the Giudecca Canal, is a favourite promenade, with a large selection of watering holes and even a touch of rare Venetian nightlife. The sestiere's northern reaches, around Campo Santa Margherita, have a mix of students and plain folk, of corner bars and shops selling plastic buckets and potatoes instead of glass harlequins and carnival masks.

Angelo Raffaele

A rare church for a lesser known angel

Ca' Foscari & Palazzo Giustiniani

Home of the University of Venice

Ca' Rezzonico

Museo del Settecento

Campo Santa Margherita

Dorsodoro's favourite meeting place


or Santa Maria del Carmelo

Dogana di Mare (Punta della Dogana)

Venice's customs house, now filled with contemporary art

Gallerie dell'Accademia

Venice's treasure house of art

Gesuati (Santa Maria del Rosario)

A Rococo masterpiece


Former syphilis hospital and church, now the Fine Arts Accademy

Magazzini del Sale (Salt Warehouses)

Now the Fondazione Emilio e Annabianca Vedova

Palazzo Ariani

Also known as Palazzo Ariani Minotto Cicogna

Palazzo Cini: La Galleria

The gallery of the Istituto di Storia dell’Arte

Palazzo Dario

The House of No Return

Palazzo Loredan dell'Ambasciatore

Former residence of the Austrian ambassadors

Palazzo Zenobio degli Armeni

With a famous hall of mirrors

Peggy Guggenheim Collection

Pure delight

Ponte dei Pugni

The Bridge of Fists

San Barnaba and its Campo

Once the vortex of ruined nobles

San Nicolo dei Mendicoli

The 'Don't Look Now' church

San Pantalon and around

The church with the extraordinary ceiling

San Sebastiano

Veronese's church

San Trovaso and its Campo

And a gondola boatyard, too

Santa Maria del Soccorso

Church founded by Veronica Franco

Santa Maria della Salute

Longhena's masterpiece

Santa Maria della Visitazione

also known as San Gerolamo dei Gesuati

Scuola Grande dei Carmini

and its paintings by Giambattista Tiepolo

Spirito Santo (church)

Always closed church of the Holy Ghost

St George

Venice's Anglican church

Le Terese (Santa Teresa)

Square and closed


Dorsoduro's Promenade

Text © Dana Facaros & Michael Pauls

Image by Paul Asman and Jill Lenoble