Palazzo Ducale - the Doge's Palace - besides St. Mark's Basilica, is the most recognizable landmark in Venice. Just off Piazza San Marco, the Palace occupies a commanding position on the Grand Canal - facing out to the sea.
Venice was once ruled by powerful merchant families. From these families they would choose a Doge who would be the ruler of the City for life. To symbolize this power, they had to built the most impressive palace for the Doge who would live and rule from the building. And it is of no doubt that the Palazzo Ducale is one of the most beautiful and impressive buildings in Venice. The architecture is in Gothic style, with a colonade on the ground floor and an open loggia on the first floor. This combination make the building appear very light and delicate, visually defying the weight of the stone used for its construction.
The views from the promenade in front of the Palazzo are spectacular.