Life Video

By Federico Cornetto


A photographer has filmed ‘historical’ images of a semi-deserted Venice with only a handful of people walking the streets amid COVID-19 scare.

On February 29, dentist and hobbyist photographer Paride Zappavigna, 58, filmed some astounding footage of the half-empty streets of the popular destination city, as fears over coronavirus drew tourists away from its attractions.

Paride said he lived most of his life in Venice and wanted to document a ‘historical moment that had no precedents’.

He filmed the silent squares, streets and canals, populated mostly local people, pigeons, cats and the occasional face mask-wearing visitor.

Paride said: “For years, Venice has been devoured by mass tourism, with over 30 million tourists visiting the city every year.

“Because of that, the city’s administration started to enforce measures to limit the arrivals due to coronavirus and also the floods earlier in December, these measures have now become useless.

“The city has gone back to the Venetians, who are few, and has become a surreal space never seen before.”

Paride uploaded this video on social media, where it quickly went viral gaining over 300,000 views.

Paride said: “I just made this video for my friends, but I tried my best to document such a beautiful moment, with the city surrounded by silence.

“At this time, Venice is wonderfully deserted.”