If we exclude the artificial island of Tronchetto, created in the mid-twentieth century and of which it is now part, Santa Croce is the smallest sestiere in Venice.

Outlined by the Grand Canal to the north, the district borders the San Polo district to the east and south-east, the Dorsoduro sestiere to the south and the lagoon to the west (Tronchetto island).

The name derives from the ancient church of Santa Croce, which is believed to have been founded in 568 and was already a parish in 774, later demolished by the French by Napoleon Bonaparte in the early 19th century. In ancient times, Santa Croce, together with the San Polo district, was made up of ponds and salt pans, in an area called "Luprio".

After the construction of the cross-lagoon car bridge in 1933, Santa Croce had to undergo the fact that it was the sestiere of connection with the mainland, despite having a dense plot of historic houses and commercial activities. Many areas have been transformed to become the city's car terminal; Piazzale Roma was built, the Tronchetto island, the Maritime Station. It is the only district that allows you to get to Venice by car.

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