24 – Museo Provinciale di Torcello

24 – Museo Provinciale di Torcello, recounts the history of the island of Torcello and its relations with Venice and the hinterland. It is located, in what was the two palaces of the Archives and of the Council.

Reaching its maximum development in the 10th century, Torcello, was before Rialto and Venice; the leading city of the lagoon and a flourishing place dedicated to commerce.

Founded at the end of 19th century, the Provincial Museum of Torcello, is divided into two different sections: the archaeological and the medieval and modern section.

Close by, are the wonderful Basilica of Santa Maria Assunta and its bell-tower and the Church of Santa Fosca.


Museo Provinciale di TorcelloMuseo Provinciale di Torcello









  • Archaeological and Venetian History Museum
  • Located next to Basilica of Santa Maria Assunta and the Church of Santa Fosca
  • Cost: €3 (adults), €1.50 (reduced)
  • Suggested duration: 1 hour
  • Vaporetto stops: Venice Fondamenta Nuovo (Line 12) to Murano – Burano – Torcello. Alternatively take Line 14 from San Zaccaria (close to St Mark’s Square) to Burano and change there to Line 9 for Torcello. 



Museo Provinciale di TorcelloThe Torcello Museum tells the story of an island that dates back to the 1st century AD.

It was a landing point and commercial exchange in the lagoon; between the sea and the hinterland. It was essentially the first port of call, for the Roman city of Altino, on the mainland. There, it linked to the main ancient roads connecting the east and north of Europe; the via Annia and the via Claudia Augusta.

Inhabited and equipped with port and commercial structures, inserted in the imperial Roman economic system; Torcello developed further over the centuries of the barbarian invasions. It offered the fleeing population of the mainland, a safe place to reside and trade.

Reaching its maximum development in the 10th century, Torcello was before Rialto and Venice, the main city of the lagoon; a flourishing place dedicated to commerce.


24 – Museo Provinciale di Torcello –  HISTORY

  • In 1870, Luigi Torelli, the prefect of Venice, purchased the Palazzo del Consiglio; to house a centre of archaeological artefacts found in Torcello, its adjacent islands and the nearby mainland.
  • In 1872, after Torelli had given the building to the Province of Venice; the Museum was founded, assigning the direction to Nicolò Battaglini.
  • In 1887, Cesare Augusto Levi took over, continuing the collection from the area and added other items; which he gathered during his travels, especially in Rome.
  • In that same year, he bought the Palazzo dell’Archivio, restored it and moved the archaeological collection there; naming it the “Museo dell’Estuario” and donating it to the provincial authorities.
  • On May 14 1889, the “Museo Provinciale di Torcello” was inaugurated.
  • In 1909, Levi was succeeded by Luigi Conton, who discovered various necropolis in Adria; from where he probably brought some of his findings to Torcello.
  • Between 1928 and 1930, the collections were rearranged under the management of Adolfo Callegari, the director until 1948. In his period, inventories, cataloguing and restoration were undertaken; including the publication in 1930, of the catalogue “Il museo di Torcello”.
  • In 1949, the direction was assigned to Giulia Fogolari, who, with the assistance of Guido Zattera; supervised the museum until 1997.
  •  n 1974, after a radical restoration of the Palazzo del Consiglio and reorganisation of the exhibited pieces; the medieval and modern sections were opened.
  • In the following years, the Palazzo dell’Archivio was restored and the present archaeological section was inaugurated in the summer of 1990, with a new layout.
  • From 2005 to 2006, the Palazzo del Consiglio was restored and safety regulations updated.

Today the Metropolitan City of Venice – in addition to the restoration of the two buildings has taken care of the cataloging and scientific study of the museum heritage in collaboration with the Ministry of Cultural Heritage, the Ca ‘Foscari University and the Region of Veneto.


Museo Provinciale di Torcello



The Museum houses a collection of works reflecting the history of the Venetian lagoon from private collections, archaeological finds and artefacts purchased by collectors, as well as handicrafts discovered in Torcello, the adjacent islands and the neighbouring mainland.

The museum is divided into two main sections:



  • The Archaeological Section: which is housed in the Palazzo dell’Archivio, contains archaeological finds coming from the Lagoon and relics from other areas; dating from the Palaeolithic era to the late-Roman period.
  • The Medieval and Modern Section: which is housed in the Palazzo del Consiglio, contains objects and documents from the first centuries of the Christian Era, until the 19th century presenting the history of the island of Torcello and its relations with the area of Altino, the Byzantine culture and the city of Venice.


ABOVE: Aerial view of Torcello. Waterbus stop at top left, with canal and various restaurants, running towards the historic centre with Cathedral of St Mary Assunta and Bell-tower.

Official Website: Museo Provinciale di Torcello

Winter hours: 1 Nov – 28 Feb   10.00-17.00  (last admission 16.30).

Summer hours: 1 March – 31 Oct   10.30-17.30   Closed on Mondays and national holidays.

Tickets: Full ticket cost: € 3.00  Reduced: € 1.50 (for groups over 10 people, children from 6 to 12 years).

*Please check for any price changes or existing health restrictions in place.


To widen your experience and enjoyment before visiting, please see my comprehensive and illustrated posts, linked below:

The island of Torcello  

The Venetian Lagoon and its Ecosystem 

Islands of the Lagoon   

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24 – Museo Provinciale di Torcello (not linked)

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24 – Museo Provinciale di Torcello    24 – Museo Provinciale di Torcello    24 – Museo Provinciale di Torcello    24 – Museo Provinciale di Torcello

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