Burano – A Visit to the Colorful Island of Venice, Italy

The first glimpse of Burano from our ferry was a candy-colored cluster of buildings rising from the emerald calm waters. As we cruised closer the houses awash in a vivid splash of colors became evident. Burano is an island in the Venetian Lagoon north of Venice in Italy. Burano along with Murano an island famous for glass making and Torcello the oldest lagoon island are amongst the lagoon islands much frequented by the tourists looking for a day excursion from the city of Venice.

Burano Colorful Island Venice Italy

Burano is famed as one of the most colorful cities in the world. Our recent visit to the colorful fairytale village of Popeye in Malta had left us spellbound and we were all agog to behold yet another postcard perfect prismatic village this time in Italy.

After spending some wonderful time in Murano we were all set to explore the hues and colors of Burano. Our visit started ashore with a statue ‘Waiting for Peace’ sculpted by Burano artist Remigio Barbaro that sat amidst the lush green lawn.

Burano Colorful Island Venice Italy

On the left, the colorful facades of the houses started unfurling dramatically behind a brilliantly painted restaurant. As we walked further into the island the colors of rainbow burst from every nook of the island. The colors of the walls, windows, and the doors made for an eye-popping spectrum of colors.

Burano Colorful Island Venice Italy

Burano Colorful Island Venice Italy

The colorful windows and balconies bedecked with gorgeous spring blooms are sure to uplift your spirits and cheer up the mood.

Burano Colorful Island Venice Italy

Burano Colorful Island Venice Italy

The colorful houses

Fishing has been a major activity on the island since early times. It is believed that these fishermen had their homes painted in bright colors to make it easy for them to spot their house from the sea. The coloring also aided in demarking the properties. Even to this day, the residents of Burano need every color approved by the government before proceeding to paint their house.

Burano Colorful Island Venice Italy

Burano lace-making art

Burano is also popular for its traditional needle lace-making art. The island has been thriving since the 16th century when women on the island began weaving fine and intricate designs with lace. Different kind of stitches in the lace work is done by different women who specialized in the particular step of design which works even to this day. And for the same reason, each handmade lace piece takes weeks to months for completion. Lucky ones might spot some elderly women on the sidewalks weaving the original Burano laces and might spare some time to offer a demo.

Burano Colorful Island Venice Italy

The village has a very calm and cheery atmosphere. We sauntered around taking pictures of the chock-a-block of houses threaded by the canals and the fishing boats moored in the canals.

Burano Colorful Island Venice Italy

Burano Colorful Island Venice Italy

Burano Colorful Island Venice Italy

To Get to Burano

Burano can be reached from Venice by hopping onto a Vaporetto line 12 that runs from Venice’s San Zaccaria stop near St. Mark’s with stops at Fondamente Nuove, Murano, and Burano. Few of them also make a stop at Torcello one of the oldest lagoon islands, not very far from Burano. Venice to Burano takes around 45 minutes by boat and Murano to Burano takes another 45 minutes. So visiting these lagoon islands can make for an amazing day trip from Venice.

Burano Colorful Island Venice Italy

Galuppi Square is the main square of Burano dominated by a monument in the memory of Baldassare Galuppi a notable Italian composer of his time also sculpted by Remigio Barbaro.

The most important landmark of Burano is the 16th century Church of San Martino with a leaning campanile also located in Galuppi Square. The campanile dominates the Burano skyline and is visible from almost anywhere in Burano.

There is also a small lace museum called Museo del Merletto where one can walk through the history and astounding art of lace making in Burano.

Burano Colorful Island Venice Italy

Burano Colorful Island Venice Italy

Burano Colorful Island Venice Italy

We could not resist ourselves from buying some lovely lacey souvenirs. The baby lace umbrellas turned out to be Chhavi’s favorite as she carried it all around the streets of Burano.

Burano Colorful Island Venice Italy

Burano Colorful Island Venice Italy

There are numerous lace boutiques along the streets of Burano where one can buy some lovely souvenirs though it is highly recommended to buy from an authentic shop. One can also find Venetian masks in an array of colors and wonderful glass works from the island of Murano.

Burano Colorful Island Venice Italy

Around the main square and most of the streets of Burano have some decent restaurants and pizzerias where you can stop by to have lunch. We already had our lunch in Murano and hence savored on some couple of yummy ice creams scoops.

Burano Colorful Island Venice Italy

The weather suddenly turned cloudy and breezy and even started to drizzle. We had to run for cover when the rains started to pour out heavily.

Burano Colorful Island Venice Italy

Soon the rain stopped and in no time a bright sun peeped out of a clear sunny sky. The rain had washed the walls and brightened its hues like a palette of colors. The spectacular band of colors of the Burano houses makes for a fabulous photo-op where one can keep snapping pictures all day.

Burano Colorful Island Venice Italy

Burano Colorful Island Venice Italy

Burano Colorful Island Venice Italy

Burano Colorful Island Venice Italy

When in Burano one can also take a detour and visit the serene island of Mazzorbo linked to Burano by a bridge. Mazzorbo has vineyards and orchard farms which has hardly much visitors are great to ramble around. Or can also visit the nearby island of Torcello which is almost abandoned and has some ruins of ancient buildings and an old church.

And when in Venice indulging in some local festival is definitely a must. Check out tips For having the best experience at Carnival in Venice.

A visit to Burano has crossed-out another item from our bucket list. Is Burano yet on your bucket list?

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16 Comment

  1. Souls on Tour says: Reply

    Great Post! I really enjoyed it! I live right near Venice and let me tell you that you celebrated, with your carefull and detailed description, the beautiful Island of Burano that I love. Great Job guys!

  2. Burano is really a very pretty, colorful town and I have often wondered why they painted their houses in those different. vibrant hues. Then I read the reason somewhere…it helped homeowners recognize their homes in the mist. Seems like a logical explanation.

  3. This reminds me of two other places that I have visited. The district of Bo-Kaap in Cape Town and the district of La Boca in Buenos Aires. Both places also have a lot of colorful houses. I have previously never heard about Burano, but it does look like a nice place to visit. Allways fun with something different from the norm. 🙂

  4. Ahh I went to Burano last summer and fell in love with the colorful houses! You did an amazing job capturing the essence of the island, both in your photos and words. You definitely make me want to go back again, it’s such a unique location!

  5. Venice is just so beautiful that I can spend hours looking at it’s pictures. The colourful and vibrant houses, the boat rides and Burano is a feast for the eyes. Especially Burano looks like a fairytale town with its picture perfect houses. In fact Burano for me is prettier in many ways than Venice.

  6. neha says: Reply

    Such a cute village with a burst of colors. I always wish the whole world were this colorful and pristine. Your writeup is making me feel that on my upcoming trip to Europe, perhaps I have not kept enough time for Venice. I should spend more time here and explore all these hidden gems of places

  7. It’s so cool how colourful all the buildings are on Burano Island. The village really is unique looking with all the boats. We would love to check this out as Venice is on our bucket list.

  8. I didn’t know that Burano is such a beautiful destination! Those vibrant colorful houses are a real treat to eyes. The statue of ‘Waiting for Peace’ looks quite intriguing. Is there any story behind that sculptor?

  9. Dane says: Reply

    I feel like I have seen sooooo many photos of Burano but I don’t actually ever remember seeing so many colours in the buildings. It looks incredible! They are everywhere! It is such a beautiful part of the world, I need to get there asap!

  10. I love how they have coloured the buildings differently instead of all going for the same thing. Overall, this adds to the sheer visual appeal of the place. With those tiny canals and tiny boats, t looks like a miniature Venice.

  11. Burano- A hidden gem was always known to me as a place for famous glass work and now these colorful row houses. They are adding charm to the whole environment and are increasing my lust to visit this place too when visiting Venice. Those boats and canals to look beautiful.

  12. Burano is certainly one colorful town reminds me of the second oldest town of Finland called Purvoo. I simply loved the colorful small houses. It certainly looks like a painting to me.

  13. A few days back I was watching a youtube video on Italy and I was so floored by this little town and here I am reading about the place. Such a lovely town and lovely buildings are so postcards perfect.

  14. Joanna says: Reply

    It’s very interesting to know that people have to ask permission before painting their houses. I love how colorful and bright the entire town is. I have only visited Venice and I can see the contrast between it and Burano – same structure of the cities but different colors. It’s great that it’s so easy to reach Burano with the vaporetto.

  15. Indrani says: Reply

    I missed both Murano and Burano. My only aim if ever I revisit Venice will be to see these 2 towns. Mesmerizing pics, so colorful and full of energy.

  16. I remember visiting all the three islands Murano, Burano and Torcello when we were in venice. Burano is so colorful and we had a nice time walking among the colorful house. We also did end up buying a lace tablecloth from here for our mother.

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