Once an Austrian woman told me: “Austrians do not have anything in common with Germans. They are much more like the Italians.” Watching Austrian people move on the Alte Donau, I have to agree. I`ve never seen before any Gondolas or self-made floats, like the ones shown above, in German waters.
Proving their more-or-less Italian identity, Austrians use the most popular Venetian boats – the Gondolas: The oarsman stands facing forward, while manoevring the boat with a single oar. As various manoevres require different positions of the oar, the organic shaped Forcola (connecting boat and oar) was developped in the 18th century for providing several positions of the oar.
Visiting Venice you can get around Salvatore Pastor`s workshop “Le Forcole”, Fondamenta Soranzo, Boat Stop: La Salute (near Guggenheim Museum) to see the crafted forcole being made.