Visiting Venice | Everything You Need To Know

visiting venice

Thinking about visiting Venice?

Who doesn’t?

It’s one of the most romantic cities in the world.

I’m sure you’ve thought about sailing down the canal in a gondola while the gondolier serenades you.

Or trying some delicious food and wine right on the water during a sunset.

If you’re planning on going to Venice in the future…

You’re at the right place!

This post is going to talk about:

  • Getting Around Venice
  • Top Things To Do In Venice
  • Where To Stay When Visiting Venice
  • Best Time Of Year To Visit Venice

If all of that sounds good to you..

Then let’s get started!

 

Getting Around Venice

Since Venice is basically underwater…

They do not use cars for transportation.

You’ll get around town by water taxis and gondolas. The most popular route is taking the water taxi up and down the Grand Canal.

You could always walk if you feel like it.

But we don’t recommend it. We got terribly lost the first time we visited Venice.

Pro Tip: Don’t wander down all of the small backstreets!

 

Flying Into The Airport?

Do you plan on flying into the Marco Polo Airport? The Marco Polo Airport is the international airport located right outside of Venice. After you land, it only takes about 20 minutes to get to the city center by bus or taxi.

 

What Currency Does Venice Use?

Venice currently uses the Euro as its form of currency. Make sure you know the exchange rate before you visit.

 

Top Things To Do In Venice

The Grand Canal

Visiting Venice Grand Canal
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The Grand Canal is the “main street” of Venice. It consists of two miles of water and it is the busiest canal in Venice. The canal splits the floating city into two main parts.

Many travelers use the public water buses to navigate through the canal and see the city. It’s the best way to get around town and it offers some of the best sightseeing too! Take a ride to see all the historic buildings, bridges, and churches.

 

Gondola Rides

Visiting Venice Gondola Rides
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Can you really consider it a trip to Venice if you don’t take a gondola ride?

It’s definitely a bucket-list item for most people.

Keep in mind, gondola rides in Venice are expensive. You should not factor it into your stay if you are on a budget.

These rides last about 40 minutes and added services like singing increase the cost.

Check out some prices here to get some ideas.

Many tourists think gondola rides are completely worth the price. Gliding through the water and seeing the sights is one of a kind experience.

We’re not trying to discourage you, we just want you to know it’s a pricey experience.

If you’re interested in a gondola ride, your hotel staff can help arrange the right kind of gondola ride and assist with arranging the price of your ride.

 

Doge Palace

Visiting Venice Doge Palace
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Doge Palace located along the lagoon in Venice appears to be floating on water with the reflection from the water.

It has three floors with government chambers, and prisons connected by the Bridge of Sighs. You’ll also find paintings and collectibles, ornate furniture, and hidden passageways!

Take one of the specialized tours, eat at the museum cafe, or stop at the bookstore.

Go here for more information on hours of operation and ticket prices.

 

Saint Mark’s Basilica

Visiting Venice St Marks Basilica
Alexey Fyodorov / Shutterstock.com

Saint Mark’s Basilica is probably the most popular building in Venice. The building has many different styles of architecture. The four bronze horses guard the entrance and inside it has exquisite mosaics with different images. Mosaics actually cover about 8,800 sq. ft. inside the basilica!

The basilica is open daily and tours are free.

 

St. Mark’s Square

Visiting Venice St Marks Square
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St. Mark’s Square is the largest and most famous square in Venice. It’s where all of the action happens!

It is near many historical buildings like Doge Palace and St. Mark Basilica.

The square has many restaurants and vendors selling goods for shopping. Go during the early morning or late evening to avoid the crowds.

 

Rialto Bridge

Visiting Venice Rialto Bridge
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Rialto Bridge is a tall bridge that serves as a landmark of Venice and a great spot to take pictures.

The bridge’s height ( at 24 feet ) allows the passage of large ships and boats through the Grand Canal. It has three walkways for residents of Venice and tourists.

One walkway leads to rows of small shops that sell crafts and jewelry. Make sure you stop by and check them out! It has several steps and may be hard for those pushing a stroller or in wheelchairs.

 

San Marco Campanile

Visiting Venice San Marco Campanile
Inu / Shutterstock.com

San Marco Campanile is a historic bell tower built in the 20th century. It is actually the 2nd bell tower because the first one collapsed and it was rebuilt in 1912.

This popular attraction is 99 meters high and offers the best views in town. We recommend climbing to the top of the tower by the stairs or taking the elevator. It’s worth the small fee.

Going up the tower gives you a wonderful view of Venice. You’ll have amazing pictures to rub in your friends’ faces.

 

Basilica di Santa Maria Gloriosa dei Frari

Basilica di Santa Maria Gloriosa dei Frari is a 14th-century church with gothic architecture. It’s decorated outside in minimalist style due to the way the order lived at the time.

The church is open daily for tours so visitors can experience this beautiful church.

Inside it has unique religious artwork and monuments. You can also stop by to see the statue of St. John and the choir of the church.

 

Where to Stay When Visiting Venice

San Marco

San Marco is one of the most crowded tourist spots and one of the most expensive areas to stay. All of the main attractions are within walking distance from the area.

Some of the attraction in this area include St Mark’s Basilica and the Rialto Bridge. This area also has many retail shops and restaurants to choose from.

This is not an area for any travelers trying to stick to a budget.

Castello

Castello is a residential part of Venice. It’s built around the largest shipyards and churches in Venice.

The hotels are inexpensive in this area and it has easy access to the ferries.

Cannaregio

Cannaregio is a neighborhood near the Jewish Quarter and Train Station. It’s located away from the busy tourist spots but still has a great nightlife. This is another option if you want to save money on hotels.

The shops have handcrafted goods and there are diverse restaurants.  It’s one of most quaint neighborhoods to stay in.

One of the most famous attractions is the art gallery called Accademia and the Peggy Guggenheim Collection.

Saint Croce

Saint Croce is another option that has less expensive hotels located away from the busy tourist areas.

It has some interesting historical buildings churches and a museum of natural history.

San Palo

San Palo is one of the most popular neighborhoods to stay in. Located in the center of Venice, it has the Rialto Bridge and a few historic churches nearby. You’ll find some of the best restaurants and markets here.

If you’re bringing kids with you, this is one of the quiet neighborhoods.

Best Time of Year to Visit Venice

A good time to visit Venice is during the Fall when temperatures are cool and there are fewer tourists. The hotel rates are lower and there are fewer crowds to contend with.

During May is another time to come for the same reasons.

Summer is the peak season in Venice. The temperatures are hot and the tourist crowds are in full force. Expect long lines and bumping into people as they walk by.

These months will also bring higher hotel rates and booked hotels near the most popular areas.

 

We Want To Hear From You

Have you ever visited Venice?

How was it? Everything you thought it would be?

Tell us about your experience in the Comment Section!

Need other tips for traveling to Europe? Check out this post here!

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