Morosini Fountain (liontaria)
Situated by 25th of August Street just across the Basilica of St. Marco, the imposing fountain of Morosini (popularly known as the “Lions”) is the ‘belly-button’ of the city and common meeting place for locals and visitors. The fountain was commissioned in 1628 by Francesco Morosini, the Venetian Governor of Crete, to deal with the water shortage of the city. Through a complex network of pipes, the mouths of the four lions gushed water transferred from the mountain of Yuchtas. Apart from the lions (symbol of Venice) the fountain is adorned by mythological representations and sea creatures (such as dolphins). Initially there was a statue of god Poseidon in the center of the fountain which is now missing. The most dominant theory says it was probably destroyed by an earthquake. From the year of its construction to our days the monument and the square that surrounds it underwent numerous interventions and stood witness of great historical moments. Today the four lions stand witnesses of the busy city life, as the square is full of people 24 hours a day! As the crossroad of the main market, sightseeing routes, and shopping streets, the ‘lions’ square’ today is surrounded by shops, cafeterias, souvlaki stores and restaurants. This is where you will eat bougatsa (cream filled pastry) and gyros pita at any time of the day or night.