Doge Palace, a pink marble structure in the floating city of Venice, was established in 1340 and is the most popular tourist destination in Italy, drawing more than 1.3 million people each year. Designed in Venetian Gothic culture style - The Doge's Palace interior features delicate white pinnacles and arched windows, surrounded by the Basilica di San Marco, Campanile (the bell tower), museums, restaurants, and shops.
Built next to St. Mark's Basilica, The Doge's Palace artworks sum up the history of La Serenissima, from its political affairs to its military triumphs and the life of the royals in Venice. The walls of Palazzo Ducale of Venice narrate the extensive history of Italy, estranged from the books of the Italian curriculum. There is a lot of magical history of Doge's Palace to explore, learn and imbibe from artworks and interiors.
The Museo dell’Opera is a stunning example of how sculpture and reliefs can convey a complex and rich “message” that is allegorical, theological, moral, and political. The 42 capitals of the Museo dell’Opera are especially noteworthy, as they are like stone poems that tell epic stories. The sculptures blend the sacred and the secular - history, astronomy, and astrology in a uniquely medieval way. This kind of holistic discourse is what the visitors can explore and enjoy at the Museo dell’Opera. One of the Doge’s Palace highlights is the Sala dei Capi, where the capital carvings of the Museo dell’Opera are displayed. These carvings depict scenes from the Bible, mythology, and history, as well as symbols of virtues and vices. They are a testament to the artistic skill and cultural vision of the medieval sculptors.
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The Doge’s Palace courtyard offers a spacious and splendid view. Discover the captivating Doge's Palace Highlights with its spacious and splendid courtyard. Two well-heads from the mid-16th century adorn the center of the courtyard. Sansovino’s colossal statues of Mars and Neptune symbolize Venice’s dominion over land and sea, and flank the Giant’s Staircase since 1567. On your way to the Gold Staircase, you will see two important inscriptions: one, from 1362, marks the visit of French King Henri III to Venice in 1574, and the other, at the Giant’s Staircase, belongs to the reign of Pope Urban V and has Gothic lettering.
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The Doge's Apartments have always been in this wing of the Palace, between the Rio Della Canonica, the current Golden Staircase, and the Ducal Chapel, which is, the apse of the Basilica of Saint Mark. In 1483, a terrific fire completely devastated the neighborhood, and later in 1510, it was reconstructed in Renaissance style. The remodeling of the so-called Doge's Apartments dates back to this time which includes rooms that are currently a part of the museum tour, which stand out for their engraved timber ceilings, massive marble chimneys with elaborate, delicately carved designs, painting friezes, and stuccoes.Today, these Apartments are used for temporary Doge's Palace exhibitions, for people to come and view the various artworks.
The Square Atrium serves as the starting point for the tour of the many Institutional Chambers within the Palace. The political and judicial branches of government are housed in these chambers. These Institutional Chambers are divided among 3 floors - first floor, second floor and the Logge floor. Due to its immutability, capacity to withstand the test of time, and ability to uphold societal harmony and peace, this was a source of envy in Europe. You will get to see the chambers of important governing bodies like the Senate and the Chamber of the Great Council and the rooms used by the prime judicial organizations of the Vatican. The elaborate design of these halls is structured to highlight the state's virtues while also indicating the role of the various bodies.
The Doge's Palace, which served as the location of all government operations, also had a prison. On the other side of the canal, a New Prison was constructed with larger and more spacious cells to improve living circumstances for inmates. Larch planks that were overlapped and fastened into place bordered each cell. Built in 1614, The Doge's Palace and the brand-new structure housing the New Prisons have been connected by the Bridge of Signs. It is covered on both sides and has two parallel corridors. The inmates' sighs as they were carried to their cells, ostensibly as they cast one final glance towards the city of Venice, were referenced in the bridge's name.
The Armory's halls house the Doge's Palace Highlights, a priceless historical collection of weapons and munitions from various sources. Dating back to the 14th century, the majority of this extraordinary collection has stood the test of time. During the Republic, the Council of Ten governed the Armory and ensured it was well-stocked with weapons, granting the Palace's guards constant access to them. On exceptionally sensitive or significant occasions, the highly-trained staff from the Arsenale shipyards, known as arsenalotti, might join these guards. Although the collection of armaments, which includes numerous priceless items, was partially scattered after the fall of the Republic, it still proudly showcases over 2000 displays.
The Doge's Palace is famous for its Gothic architecture, built in the 14th and 15th centuries. The Doge's Palace has significant Renaissance and opulent Mannerist adjunctions.
The main highlights of Doge’s Palace are - Museo dell’Opera, Courtyard and the Loggias, Doge’s Apartments, Institutional Chambers, Armoury and Doge's Palace prison.
For a quick visit to the Doge's Palace, allow at least one to one and a half hours (queueing time is not included). You will need two to three hours if you want to dig deeper. You can see the Doge's Palace and St. Mark's Basilica, in just two to two-and-half hours if you take a guided tour.
Can you take photos of the collection in Doge's Palace?
You can take a photo of all the works present inside Doge's Palace in Venice only videography and use of flash is prohibited.
Should I book the tickets in advance to see the Doge’s Palace Collection?
You must book the tickets online in advance to avoid the long queues at the spot, especially if you plan to visit during summers.
How old is Doge’s palace?
The Doge's Palace was built in 1340, later it was expanded upon and altered over the decades and was further converted into a museum in 1923 for people to come and learn about the history of the great heritage.
What are the opening hours of Doge’s Palace?
The Doge’s Palace opens at 9 am and closes at 6 pm, from Monday to Sunday.