Burano – Lace Island

Burano Case Colorate

Burano (not Murano; that’s where the glass is from) is known for its laces (“merletti”) that are still hand-made by the women living on this tiny island.

In case you think about bringing a lace-fan/umbrella/… back home I recommend you to visit Burano as you have the chance to buy the real merletti there.

According to a legend, a fisherman – while he was fishing outside on the sea – resisted a siren who tried to entice him by her singing, staying true to his fiancée. The sirens’ queen was impressed by the young man’s faithfulness and – by hitting the side of his boat with her tail creating a wave of foam that transformed into a wedding veil – rewarded him with a gift.

Back home for his marriage, he gave the gift to his fiancée who was admired by all the ladies of the island who themselves tried to imitate the fine lace work in the hope to create an even more beautiful one. (cf. Burano Lace)

Burano Calle

When I arrived at the islands I was immediately overwhelmed by the colourful red-pink-blue-green-yellow houses “beaded” along the calli and canali. Like the Lego cities I was building in my childhood – only natural-size and with canals. The light too seems to absorb and reflect the houses colours. Like in the picture of this calle with its pink houses and the pink bikes. Accidentally, when I took the picture, two children – brother and sister – passed by with their dog: the boy dressed like a little gentleman in his elegant shirt and his sister – unfortunately you can’t see her as she’s walking in front of him – with her tiny lady-handbag. Two of the youngest Burano residents. It was Sunday, so I imagine that they have been to church.

We walked through Burano without a map – it’s so tiny you won’t get lost – having a look at different lace products. Actually, there’s not much to see (besides the shops and the clock-tower that is reminiscent of the tower of Pisa as it’s slightly inclined), but if you want to spend a sunny relaxing afternoon or morning on the island, it’s really worth it.

How to get to Burano

From Venice Piazzale Roma it takes you about 1.5 (up to 2) hours to get there as you have to change the Vaporetto: take the 4.1/5.1, get off at Fondam. Nove and take the nr. 12 (direction Punta Sabbioni).

Merletti Shops

There are different shops on the island selling merletti: Merletti dalla Olga, Dalla Lidia and La Perla in the main square and Martina Home Collection close to the Vaporetto stop.

Venezia - Burano: Detailed view of the handworked merletti

Venezia – Burano: Detailed view of the handworked merletti

Immagine, that it takes up to 2/3 months to produce a 15cmx15cm piece of merletto … incredible! 😮


This post is also available in: German