Hidden away in one of the busiest parts of the city, the ancient Chiostro di Sant' Apollonia is an island of peace and tranquillity in a sea of chaos. Although the Romanesque cloister lies only a stone's throw from Piazza San Marco, the hordes never penetrate its space.
The cloister, once part of a Benedictine Abbey, dates back to the 12th century, which makes it the oldest chiostro in Venice. The brick paving is a rare example of a style that was once common throughout Venice. In the garth the bricks are laid out in a herringbone pattern, while in the alleys the bricks form a basket-weave pattern.