Venice Islands: Murano, Burano and Torcello

Venice Islands: Murano, Burano and Torcello

Whoever goes to Venice cannot fail to include in the itinerary a hop on the other islands that are also part of the city, the beautiful Murano, Burano and Torcello. Each of them has particular characteristics and interesting stories that make the trip worthwhile. You can easily see them all in the same day. Come with us to discover the islands of Venice!


From Venice to Murano it takes about 30 minutes by boat; from Murano to Burano also about 30 minutes; and from Burano to Torcello, just 10 minutes. The islands are small, so you can visit all of them in half a day.

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Founded by the Romans in the 6th century, Murano is 1.5 km north of Venice, has a population of approximately 5,000 and is famous for the glass industry. Around the year 1000, hermits of the Camaldolese Order occupied the place, looking for a place of solitude for their way of life. There they founded the Monastery of St. Michael of Murano. This monastery became a great center of learning and printing. However, the monastery was suppressed in 1810 by French forces under Napoleon, in the course of his conquest of the Italian peninsula, and the monks were expelled in 1814. The site eventually became Venice's largest cemetery. Murano has become the venice glass production center because in 1291 all the glassmakers in Venice were forced to move to Murano because of the risk of fire. This made the local industry develop and Murano became the largest producer of crystals in Europe!

Venice Islands: Murano, Burano and Torcello
Beautiful colored bowls produced in Murano

Attractions on the island include the Church of Santa Maria and San Donato; The Church of San Pietro Martire; it's the Mule's Palace. As for attractions related to glass, there are many glass factories open to the public which feature a quick and impressive display of production of glass works (both blown and sculpture) before tourists are taken to the store to purchase locally produced pieces, and the Murano Glass Museum, which tells the story of this industry, housed in Palazzo Giustinian (Address: Fondamenta Giustinian, 8, 30141 Venezia, Italy / Hours: open daily from 10 am to 6 pm / Admission: 10 euros). It was on the island that the American artist Dale Chihuly (the one with the beautiful glass gallery in Seattle and the work of ceiling art in the lobby of the Bellagio Hotel in Las Vegas) learned the techniques used in his works.

Venice Islands: Murano, Burano and Torcello
Church of Santa Maria and San Donato


Burano is located 7 km from Venice and is famous for its colorful houses that create a simply amazing look! The island was also founded by the Romans in the 6th century and currently has less than 3,000 inhabitants. Burano is super compact and very easy to visit, there's no way to get lost there. It is said that the houses began to be painted in bright colors so that the fishermen could identify them after they were returning from a long fishing trip. A curiosity is that the colored houses are painted according to a specific system from the 16th century. In this way, if someone wants to paint their house, they must send a request to the government, which will answer what colors are allowed for that lot. Amazing, isn't it?

Venice Islands: Murano, Burano and Torcello
The beautiful Burano and its colorful houses

Other attractions include the Church of San Martino (with its leaning steeple); O Santa Barbara Oratory; it's the Museum and School of Lace Manufacturing, O Lace Museum (Address: Piazza Baldassarre Galuppi, 187, 30142 Burano, Venezia VE, Italy / Opening hours: Tuesday to Sunday from 10 am to 5 pm / Admission: 5 euros). In fact, the city is full of small shops that sell lace items, especially wonderful tablecloths. It was, without a doubt, the island that we liked the most.

Venice Islands: Murano, Burano and Torcello
Burano and the leaning belfry
Venice Islands: Murano, Burano and Torcello
lace shops


Torcello is the oldest inhabited island in Venice, as it began to be populated shortly after the fall of the Western Roman Empire, and it was where the residents of Venice took refuge from attacks by the King of the Huns, Attila, during the Barbarian Invasions. The profile is totally different from the others, with very old building, ruins and a very rustic look. Torcello quickly grew in importance as a political and commercial center, as it benefited from maintaining close cultural and commercial ties with Constantinople. At salt flats became the basis of Torcello's economy, making its port rapidly develop into an important re-export market. However, the lagoon around the island of Torcello gradually became a swamp from the 12th century onwards, bringing malaria-carrying mosquitoes, which caused an epidemic that ravaged the island. A curiosity is that in 1948, one of the famous residents of Torcello was the American writer Ernest Hemingway, who was inspired by the island to write the book “Na Outra Margem, Entre as Árvores” (1950). The resident population on the island these days is around 10 people and a few restaurants!

Venice Islands: Murano, Burano and Torcello
Torcello Ruins

Torcello has numerous palaces, 12 parishes and its 17 cloisters have almost completely disappeared. The only remaining medieval buildings form a set of four buildings. Today's main attraction is the Cathedral of Santa Maria Assunta, founded in 639, with beautiful Byzantine mosaics. Other attractions include the Santa Fosca Church, in the form of a Greek cross, and the Museo Provinciale di Torcello housed in two 14th-century palaces, the Palazzo dell'Archivio and the Palazzo del Consiglio, which was once the seat of communal government. Other attractions are an old stone chair known as Throne of Attila and the Devil's Bridge, without handrail or railing.

Venice Islands: Murano, Burano and Torcello
Cathedral of Santa Maria Assunta
Venice Islands: Murano, Burano and Torcello
Devil's Bridge


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Venice Islands: Murano, Burano and Torcello - Travelers

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Viajonários is formed by a Brazilian couple who have been living abroad since 2014, with passages in California and London. Passionate about travel, cinema, sports, music, history and technology. Don't forget to follow the social media to know about all the adventures!



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