Is it possible to have a major trade city built on the edges of a lagoon?

For a city I'm designing it is situated on a lagoon but if there is a small strait/canal so that ships can move in and out of the lagoon does it still qualify as a lagoon?

I ask not only for geographic understanding but also because the name of the city means lagoon.

  • 1
    $\begingroup$ For examples in fantasy, see: Braavos, Camorr $\endgroup$
    – Aurast
    Mar 7, 2015 at 4:40
  • $\begingroup$ In terms of the geography a lagoon is only a lagoon, as opposed to the more general estuary or a fjord or a barred coast if it does have a single point where the ocean has access and there is a general circulation of seawater, at least with each tide but often continuously. $\endgroup$
    – Ash
    Aug 4, 2017 at 15:20

2 Answers 2


A good example would be the city of Venice, which is built on the Venetian Lagoon.

This is, in fact, where the name lagoon comes from.

Historically, from the 9th to the 12th century, the city was a hub of trade between Western Europe and the Byzantine Empire and the Islamic world.

So clearly it's possible to have a major trade city on a lagoon, the name itself comes from a real world example.

  • $\begingroup$ I actually wasnt aware Venice was on a Lagoon. I assumed it was an archipelago in the middle of the Adriatic. Thanks! $\endgroup$
    – WeekzGod
    Mar 6, 2015 at 22:25
  • $\begingroup$ Besides this, and Lagos mentioned below, Kaliningrad and Szczeczin on the Baltic are also notable examples. $\endgroup$ Mar 7, 2015 at 9:20

Lagos, Nigeria It is situated on a lagoon and its Yoruba name, Eko, means lake or lagoon.

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    $\begingroup$ You might add to your answer that Lagos has been a typical trade city from the 15th century, as a hub fore, amongst other things, palm oil trade and, when colonized, trans-Atlantic slave trade. $\endgroup$
    – leo
    Mar 7, 2015 at 8:54
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    $\begingroup$ @SerbanTanasa I believe it's a simple answer for a simple question. No need to elaborate. $\endgroup$
    – Vincent
    Mar 7, 2015 at 18:18

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