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Fondaco dei Turchi

Santa Croce 1730

Closed Mondays

Line 1 San Stae stop on the Vaporetti

After trade was opened up between Venice and the Sublime Porte, Turkish merchants took over a palace beside the Grand Canal. It had been built in the 13th centuiry for a merchant from Pesaro, and revamped after a major fire in 1508 in Venetian Byzantine style. As the Fondaco dei Turki, it was the Ottoman enclave in the city, and was used as a warehouse and market as well as a residence for merchants, becoming a kind of Turkish ghetto. It was in use up until 1838, 41 years after Napolean had put an end to the Republic. Today, the four-storey building houses the Museo di Storia Naturale di Venezia (Natural History Museum of Venice), a museum about the wild life of the lagoon, worth visiting for the historic building it inhabits.

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Issue 66, December 2023 Turkey’s Centenary Issue
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