Four hundred bridges cross the labyrinth of canals that form the 120 islands of Venice, situated in a saltwater lagoon between the mouths of the Po and Piave rivers in northeast Italy. All traffic in the city moves by boat. Venice is connected to the mainland, 4 kilometers (2.5 miles) away, by ferries and a causeway for road and rail traffic. The Grand Canal winds through the city for about 3 kilometers (about 2 miles), dividing it into two nearly equal sections. According to tradition, Venice was founded in 452, when the inhabitants of Aquileia, Padua, and several other northern Italian cities took refuge on the islands of the lagoon from the Teutonic tribes invading Italy at that time. The simulated natural color ASTER image, acquired December 9, 2001, covers an area of 39 x 35 km located at 45.4 degrees north latitude and 12.3 degrees east longitude.
IMAGE AND TEXT CREDIT: NASA/METI/AIST/Japan Space Systems, and U.S./Japan ASTER Science Team