Icons of Italy: The Top 12 Sights You Have to See

Grand Canal [Venice, Italy]

Ca d’Oro | Venice, in its golden age as a maritime power, was a place of almost unrivaled glamour, power and luxury. Get a taste of what life was like for Venice’s elite during that era by visiting Ca d’Oro (House of Gold), one of the ornate palaces that line the Grand Canal. Built by a family that boasted eight doges (dukes), Ca d’Oro illustrates the height of Italian gothic splendor with its filigree arches and airy appearance. The palace, completed in 1430, now houses an art museum that’s worth visiting as much for a chance to see the interior of the building as the paintings and sculptures on display.


LaFenice [Venice, Italy]

La Fenice | Like its namesake, the mythical phoenix, La Fenice has risen from the ashes, again and again. The theater has burned and been rebuilt an extraordinary three times – in 1774, 1836 and 1996 – and was most recently re-opened in 2003. Despite that turbulent history, the theater’s interior still instantly transports visitors to another time. The theater’s opulent 19th-century style makes it simply one of the best places in the world to see opera.

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Gina Czupka

Gina’s first solo trip abroad, at age 16, changed her life. Since then, travel has been her passion and it’s her mission to convince others that they really can make travel a part of their lives. These days, she seeks out destinations where she can indulge her taste for adventure and shop for additions to her textile collection. Some of her favorite experiences from recent trips have included eating bun cha in Hanoi and feeding hyenas in Ethiopia.

Gina’s Favorite Travel Tip: When traveling abroad, learn enough of the language to be polite (hello, thank you, goodbye) and to shop and haggle (numbers and colors).

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