One of Venice’s most beautiful and easily recognizable buildings, the Doge’s Palace not only served as the residence of the Doge (ruler of Venice) but also the centre of government during the Venetian Republic.
Nestled inside the grand Piazza San Marco, this ornate palace-cum-museum dates back to the 14th century and boasts of sheer beauty, iconic artworks, and interesting history that make it one of Venice‘s must-see tourist attractions. Other than being the Doge’s home and a meeting place for Venetian dignitaries, the Doge’s Palace also showcases the Prisons of the Republic — accessed via one of the most famed of all Venetian icons: the Bridge of Sighs.
Façade and Interior at a Glance
The distinctive façade of this Gothic-style masterpiece is adorned with a lavish open portico, a second-floor balcony, and decorative bricks that make it worthy of being called the Doge’s Palace. That’s not all; what makes it a great sight to behold are its elegant interiors supported by the marble of Verona and stone arches that simply complement the palace’s grand staircases and frescoed walls. What’s more; the palace also lays testimony to several arcade sculptures, including “Noah’s Drunkenness,” which is evident in the corner of the south façade and carved allegorical figures portraying Venetia on seven of the arcades overlooking the Piazzetta.
Tips to Make the Most of Your Visit
- Ideal visiting time: Since the Doge’s Palace is one of the most visited tourist attractions in Venice, you must be prepared to wait in long queues. It is highly recommended you book a tour that includes Skip the Line tickets.
- Comfortable footwear: The Palace complex is quite big with several stairs and uneven passageways en-route the prisons, and that’s why we recommend wearing good walking shoes for the utmost comfort.
- Readily available food options: No need to carry snacks along with you. There are many restaurants scattered around St. Mark’s Square, which is just a pebble’s throw away from the Doge’s Palace.