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The island of Torcello, a jewel in the heart of the lagoon

Updated: Jan 18, 2023

Discover one of Venice's most important islands, Torcello, an island in the lagoon with an ancient and prosperous history.


Some history

In the past, together with the neighbouring islands of Mazzorbo, Burano, Ammiana, and Costanziaco, it was the starting point of Venetian trade to the Adriatic Sea. Over the centuries, the island was home to a flourishing wool-processing industry and had a population of thousands.

However, from the 15th century onwards, the decline of Torcello began due to its proximity to Venice, the unhealthy air in the area, and frequent epidemics (picture shows the Basilica of Santa Maria Assunta).

Torcello Today

Today, the island is home to only a small community of about 15 residents but attracts many tourists because of its valuable archaeological heritage. Excavation campaigns conducted in the 1960s showed that Torcello was already settled in the first centuries of the Roman Empire, at the same time as the city of Altino flourished.

How to reach the island of Torcello?

To get to the island of Torcello you can take a Vaporetto (water bus) line 9, or take a comfortable water taxi that will take you directly to the island comfortably and smoothly. Book your transfer to the island of Torcello, Murano, and Burano here.

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