Bordering both San Marco and Cannaregio, and spreading right across the city to the housing estates of Sant’Elena in the east, Castello is the largest of the sestieri. In terms of its tourist appeal, centre stage is occupied by the huge Santi Giovanni e Paolo. Within a few minutes’ walk of here are two other fascinating churches, Santa Maria Formosa and San Zaccaria, as well as the beguiling Carpaccio paintings in the Scuola di San Giorgio degli Schiavoni.

Much of the eastern section of the Castello sestiere is given over to the Arsenale, once the industrial hub of the city and now a large naval base. Beyond it lies a predominantly residential quarter that has little to offer of cultural significance, except when the Biennale art and architecture shows are on, though its open spaces – the Giardini Garibaldi, Giardini Pubblici and Parco della Rimembranza – offer a little green relief.

Travel offers; book through Rough Guides

Italy features

The latest articles, galleries, quizzes and videos.

Where to find the best beaches in Italy

Where to find the best beaches in Italy

From secluded coves to lively seafronts, there are plenty of places to sun worship in Italy. But with an increasing number of hotels charging for access to the …

20 Jul 2017 • Rough Guides Editors insert_drive_file Article
Video: the 1 minute guide to Italy

Video: the 1 minute guide to Italy

Italy has long been one of Europe's most popular destinations. From the magnificent remnants of ancient Rome to the coolest in contemporary culture, secret beac…

08 Jun 2017 • Colt St. George videocam Video
Why Turin should be your next foodie break

Why Turin should be your next foodie break

Not so long ago, Turin (Torino) – Italy’s great northern powerhouse – was largely ignored by tourists, unfairly dismissed as little more than a giant Fiat…

26 May 2017 • Edward Aves insert_drive_file Article
View more featureschevron_right

Join over 60,000 subscribers and get travel tips, competitions and more every month

Join over 60,000 subscribers and get travel tips, competitions and more every month