The beauty of Venezia (Venice) has stood the test of the time, though the facades and foundations are looking rather weathered! If you don’t mind your ground floor being submerged into the sea and occasionally wading round your house in wellies, then Venice could be the place for you!
St Mark’s Basilica ‘Why does Venice keep sinking’? I hear you ask. Well, that depends on who you speak to. According to some (estate agents!) the subsidence has stabilised since artesian wells were banned half a century ago. However, there are scientists who claim that the city is still sinking up to 2mm per year. Although the foundations rest on water resistant wooden piles; derived from Alder tree trunks, the piles actually become stone-like from the constant flow of mineral-rich water. So, it’s unclear if we blame the foundations, the overall rising sea levels or the fact that Venice is hit more regularly by floods. Or, all of the above. Burano Good news – Hopefully, the engineering project to install flood-protection walls will be completed soon, so it won’t be a case of ‘closing the stable door after the horse has bolted!’ The ‘stable door’ will consist of hollow, floatable gates which, when filled with air, will rise to block incoming tides. Not so good news – There may be a reduction in the sale of wellington boots!