Featured amongst many international magazines as one of the top 10 most colorful cities in the world, Burano is the north-eastern suburb of Venice, Italy. Known for its handmade lace and the houses painted in striking different hues, this deserted alter-ego of Venice is said to be settled by the Romans in the 6th century. Burano is the perfect island city to visit on foot, taking a romantic walk down the prettiest fishing town of Italy.
Don’t be surprised if you enjoy your own me-time wandering the peaceful alleys of Burano alongside the setting sun in the evening, when the streetlights cast a warm glow opposite the colorful houses, creating a splendid atmosphere for you to remember forever!
1. Church of San Martino, Burano
Established more than a thousand years ago is the church of St. Martin, located on the main square, of the island of Burano. The interior of which is to be seen in Baroque style, having three aisles that end with a chapel. These aisles are divided then by neoclassical columns, supporting round arches, and Corinthian capitals.
The church also retains a famous painting by Giambattista Tiepolo (Crucifixion, 1727) considered by many as a true masterpiece.
2. Leaning Tower of Burano
In case you were only aware of the Leaning Tower of Pisa as the only leaning tower across the globe; there are 9 more in Italy itself!
Also known as the leaning Bell Tower of Burano, constructed between 1703 and 1714 the 6.2 meters wide and 53 meters high tower is located in close vicinity to the church of San Martino. Although the tilt the structure has was spotted by many during its construction itself, it gets that incline mostly due to the marshy conditions of the island.
Sometimes our own imperfections are those that give us a memorable story!
3. Lace Museum
Home to the original handmade lace artworks; this lace museum of Burano, also known as the Museo del Merletto showcases rare and precious craft that offer an overview of the history of Burano laces, right from its origins to the present day. This 19th-century Venetian house is a stand-out piece of architecture when compared with other old buildings of the island; and certainly is a not-to-be-missed destination when in Burano.
4. Galuppi Square
Burano is not that big, but surely is full of unique corners to visit, and quite a few places to discover. Such is the city center of Burano, the ‘Galuppi Square’. Named after the then famous opera composer, Baldassare Galuppi; the heart of this square is a statue of Galuppi himself holding a diary full of musical notations, sculpted by Remigio Barbaro.
5. Chapel of Santa Barbara
Located right alongside the Church of San Martino, is the Chapel of Santa Barbara, named after St. Barbara, one of the important saints for both Catholic and Orthodox churches. Although being a chapel, it’s just as big as a house and also quite simple; yet it doesn’t fail to charm you by any means. It also has a small bell tower to the left of the building.
6. Calle Galuppi, Burano
Calle Galuppi is the main street of Burano, where you can find pretty much everything you are looking for! Lined with shops and a few bakeries painted with beautiful pastel colors, numerous fish-restaurants that will serve you the fresh sea-food catch by the local fishermen, and the obvious outlets selling lace and handicrafts. ‘Calle Galuppi’ is a true focal point of the island’s day-to-day life, where people meet and exchange news, have a word or two; their voices and laughter become part of Burano’s charming and colorful landscape!
7. Tre Ponti, Burano
Dotted with colorful buildings and narrow canals is the island of Burano, connected by bridges. One of the most beautiful views of these colored houses comes from ‘Tre Ponti’, a wooden bridge that collectively connects three canals, and hence the name ‘Tre Ponti’. A photography enthusiast can’t afford to miss this opportunity of capturing the multi-colored houses, remaining suspended over the water.
8. Casa Burano
The first and only loading hotel on the island, Casa Burano is nowhere like a usual hotel. Based on an innovative concept of hospitality, the “Albergo Diffuso”, meaning “diffused hotel”; consists of 13 rooms and suites, spread over 5 traditional houses, once inhabited by lace makers and fishermen, scattered in some of the most enchanting places of Burano island. To stay here means, to live right amongst the locals as one of them and not like a tourist.
Casa Burano is a perfect example of narrative design, where each room has been thoughtfully restored with the help of local materials and furnishing that reflect the real soul of the surrounding environment.
9. Al Gatto Nero da Ruggero
To understand the real vibe and culture of a place, we must not miss out on the cuisines it has to offer. Fishing being the most important income source of Burano, fish dishes of the island are very popular as well. Founded in 1965 by Chef Ruggero Bovo, ‘Al Gatto Nero da Ruggero’ is a family-owned and-run restaurant. If you wish to taste the real flavors of Burano, this place is something you can’t afford to miss!
10. Bepi’s House
No house in Burano is color shy! But there is one that stands out amongst all of those. Decorated with geometric forms such as circles, squares, and triangles, dyed in yellow, orange, red, blue, and all the colors you can imagine; is the house of Bepi Sua. Bepi’s house now appears in many postcards and is also known worldwide, as a result of the paintings of geometric shapes done by Bepi himself, who used to walk out of the door every afternoon with his paintbrushes and start painting.
This way, his house had a different look every evening. A new life and a new backdrop, for all the tourists’ photos and memories.
11. Water Supply Tower
In an island full of exotic colors, this old brick water storage tower breathes slightly differently. Previously used by the people of Burano, this vintage water supply tower might not be much of an architectural marvel, but certainly stands out quite a bit!
12. San Francesco del Deserto monastery.
Founded in 1221 by St. Francis of Assisi, this place is a paradise of solitude. Sited just a few minutes away from the city center of Burano via a boat ride. A large wooden cross and a cobblestone road leading to the entrance of this monastery, where you will be greeted by a monk accompanying you during your visit.
A once in a lifetime experience, this place is a spiritual wonderland!
13. Pescaria Vecia (the old fish market)
Burano being a fisherman’s village it has to have a fish market; and Pescaria Vecia, as is called by the locals, is another wonderful insight into the island’s history. Looking for breathtaking sunsets over the bay of Venice, Pescaria Vecia is the most loved place by photographers and couples.
14. New Arte Fuga
New Arte Fuga is a small glass factory-cum-shop, which offers exclusively original Murano glass objects. This type of glass is renowned worldwide due to its vivid colors and crystalline purity. Also, this tradition of creating glass sculptures dates back to centuries ago, and no item is similar to the other. All you get is a unique, authentic Murano glass.
15. The Sacred Statue
The sculpture called the ‘Souaci Gesú’ by Buranese artist Remigio Barber is the finest thing you will get to see in Burano.
Facing the waterfront, the sacred statue portrays a woman expressing genuine desperation. All the Buranese men being true watermen, we may suppose the sculpture reflects grief and despair for a loved one lost at the Sea.
Such is the love story of Burano; with its people, with the sea, and utmost with its colors. “Have a lovely life, you-all”.