Squeri of Venice, places where the gondolas born
The Gondola is a tipical boat of the Venetian Lagoon, unique and fascinating, to build it the authorized artisans uses 7 different wood type wisely placed on different part of the boat.
The gondola is 11 meters long and it is asymmetrical, it is build basically on the characteristic of the gondolier who will own it, so if he will row on Venetian style, a single rower on the back left side of the boat, the gondola will assume an asymmetrical asset, balanced by the weight of the gondolier.
The gondolier use a single row and this is inserted on an essential part of the gondola called Forcola,, build in wood and shaped to fit the gondola configuration, there are forcolas made for gondola, sandolo, or mascareta (typical boats in use on the lagoon).
The forcola has a shape that allow all sort of manoeuvres and it is inserted on a slot and moved out after the use, it also a sort of symbol for the venetian and it is an object that often can be found in their houses.
In front of the gondola can be found an iron ornament called il ferro di prua, an important element to balance the weight of the gondolier, its shape represent the six sestieri of Venice, 6 barrle in the front and one represent the giudecca (The barrel on the back) all surrounded by a representation of the doge’ s hat to protect the sestieri, the arch represent the rialto bridge and the “s” shape on the highest part of the ferro represent the Grand Canal.
The building of a gondola take normally one year and it is made on a typical shipyard called squero, the etymology seems to come from the Greek “ eskharion”, however it is supposed that the name come from the dialectal word “ squara” , an indispensable instrument for the artisans.
The squero is characterized by a slope to the canal to slide boats into the water asnd as well with the laboratory dedicated to building and painting.
Often squeri has holes on the slope, to insert the bow and the stern, the gondola is build upside down. In the past there where may squeros, testimoniances comes form the many streets called “ calle del Squero” , now there are only few left, the most famous one, insestiere di Dorsoduro, is the “ Squero di sanTrovaso” one is in Giudecca and one in Castello.
It’ s possible and almost obligatory to take a gondola ride around Venice, the perspective of the city change dramatically and it is possible to see enchanting places that otherwise can’ t be seen walking,
Taking profit of an unforgettable and unique atmosphere that only a city of Venice can offer.
The Venice city hall offer some traghetto services by gondola in different part of the city to facilitate the crossing of the grand canal, only four bridges span over it to link the two part of the city, those are The Rialto Bridge, The Accademia Bridge, the Scalzi bridge and the very recent Cosntitution bridge.
Traditionally the cost of the service was one “ Palanca” a coin. Now is € 2,00 and the canal is crossed day and night continuosly, so we could say that with only € 2,00 we took a gondola ride.