St. Mark's Square is the main public square of Venice. Located in sestiere of San Marco, St Mark's Square is known in Italian as Piazza San Marco, or simply called "The Piazza", as all other open spaces in Venice are called campi. The one exception is the Piazzetta San Marco, the contiguous open space connecting Piazza San Marco to the lagoon waterfront.
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Most visitors to Venice start by arriving at the waterfront, then make their way through the Piazetta San Marco to reach Piazza San Marco. On their way, they past a pair of columns, called the Columns of San Marco and San Teodoro. The column to St. Mark is topped by the statue of a winged lion, the symbol of Venice, while the column of St. Teodoro is topped by the statue of St Teodoro, the patron saint of Venice. They mark your entrance into Venice.
Passing the column, you can see the magnificent Sansovino Library on your left (west) and the Doge's Palace on your right (east). Further on you arrive at St Mark's Square, with the main feature being St. Mark's Basilica. To your left is St Mark's Campanile, the bell tower of the basilica.
The three sides of St Mark's Square are lined with arcades housing cafés allowing Al Fresco dining. Directly straight ahead is St Mark's Clock Tower (Torre dell'Orologio) above an archway. The archway leads down to the Mercerie, the main shopping streets of Venice.
The clocktower is within the same row as an arcade known as Procuratie Vecchie. It forms the northern face of St Mark's Square. Across the square, on the southern side is the Procuratie Nuove. Rooms here as well as in the Sansovino Library house the Archaeological Museum of Venice.
Between the Procuratie Vecchie and Procuratie Nuove, lining the western face of St Mark's Square, is the Napoleonic Wing (Ala Napoleonica) housing the Correr Museum.
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