Venice- dream destination for all of us. A blissful city with friendly people Venice is not just about Churches, Bridges, Gondola rides and boats, there is lot more to add to it. The beaches at Lido, the open market at Rialto Mercato and Glass blowing factory at Murano are a must visit.
Murano Island – A home to traditional venitican glass makers. It is said that a community of glassmakers moved to this Island in 12th century fearing the destruction of Venetican Republic as the building were made of Wood and the procress of glass making could cause fire hazards. They dominated the world in the quality of glass making for centuries and their work is held high event today. Murano Island is a 20 minute boat ride from the city of Venice. The local transport vaporetti (water buses) gets you there; you can also look out for a hawker who organises a trip to the Island in a private boat, they take you to a factory to show the art of glass blowing and finally open the door to a private collection of the artisans work. I decided to choose the second option as it was the easier way out. The ride through the boat was simply amazing. Drops of water splashed on my face as the taxi glided across the vast blue canal. On my way was the San Michele Island which is famous cemetery and an intresting fuel station for the water taxi and ships. I had to hold tightly onto the edges of the boat as I stood up experiencing the wind running accross my face.
The water taxi stopped as close as possible to the bank of the canal and I was received by a co ordinator who organised my personal tour of the demonstration factory and left me with the glass master to demonstrate his skills. He melted the silica powder in the hot furnace and used a steel rod to blow it from one end and create a desired shape of the melted silicon. Ten minutes of this blowing skills created a beautiful flower vase. As he was giving final touches to the vase, he placed a paper on the vase it caught fire immediately.After the demonstration the co ordinator took me to a showroom. I was stunned my eyes could not focus on one thing there were frosted and transparent glasses in red , blue, green, Purple, fruits and vegetable, animals, decorative pieces, dinner ware and lampshades. I just walked from one room to another admiring these beautiful hand crafted sculptures. No doubt these were very expensive but if you were really intrested in buying any of them you could bargain get them even for half the price, and the services that I recieved was amazing, the salesman lured me by saying that they would accept card payments and also ship it to any part of the world. In the end just before the billing counter were some small and affordable products, I picked up a few to take it with me as a souviner .
I left the factory thoroughly satisfied with the tour on my way back to the island I spotted an another factory. I greedily tried my luck to see if I can get another glimpse, following the signs that said visitor’s entrance which lead me to a huge factory with 3 furnace and 6 people working in it. Italian men with well built muscles sweat off as they tried to create a world class product; they smiled at me as I saw them mixing colours and shapes to create a lampshade, I watched them work to my heart’s content, and finally left the place. As I walked out I spotted some huge cartons stacked in the corridor, these were finished products ready to be shipped to the rest of the world.
I soon reached the Island of Murano I spotted a huge artistic glass work on one side of the bridge. This blue coloured gaint sculpture is a gift to the island of Murano by the artisans living there. I also found numerous glass shops which had souvenirs like glass gongolas, boats, lampshades, show pieces, paperweights,beads, necklaces, glass jewellery. There were also some intresting stuff like colored fish in transparent glass aquariums or wrapped hard candies of multicolored glass. I spent the rest of the afternoon sitting along the bank of the canal dipping my legs in the water, eating a slice of pizza, enjoying the warmth of the sun. Ah! truly Venice, truly Italian, but all good things will have to come to an end, and so I headed back saying Grazie Murano.