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TrevisoVeneto, Italy

Soak up the peaceful atmosphere as you wander among the twisting waterways and maze of arcaded streets in this pretty northern Italian town.

A calmer alternative to Venice, canal-covered Treviso is well known for its excellent shopping and dining scenes. Stroll along charming streets and cross over the bridges of the medieval town, listening for the strains of accordion music from street performers. Discover an assortment of historic churches and a palazzo dating to the 13th century.

Explore Piazza dei Signori, a café-lined square in the town’s commercial heart. Look for the historic town hall, Palazzo dei Trecento, identifiable by its brick façade and the battlements adorning the exterior. From the square, it’s just a short walk to the tourist centre where you can pick up information on upcoming events, including music concerts and cultural festivals.

Admire the Duomo, an imposing Roman Catholic cathedral with a rich history. The original church was founded in the 12th century, although it has been altered and remodelled several times since then. Among the highlights here are the underground crypts and artworks by Italian painters Pordenone and Titian.

The city is home to the famous clothing empire Benetton, and a large Benetton store sits behind the Palazzo dei Trecento on Piazza Indipendenza. Other notable clothing brands that started in Treviso are Diadora, Sisley, Stefanel and Lotto Sport Italia. For more shopping, head to the luxury stores on Via Calmaggiore.

Treviso is home to many enchanting bars and restaurants. Sip a glass of prosecco, a sparkling Italian white wine. Prosecco grapes are grown in the vineyards surrounding Treviso. Sample the region’s specialty dishes, including tiramisu, a classic Italian dessert which some claim originated here.

With excellent designer shopping, fine Italian cuisine and beautiful historic sites, Treviso is a great place for a weekend break in Northern Italy. The city is about 40 kilometres (25 miles) north of Venice.