The city of Venice is full of numerous wonders, but many people choose to travel there to see the plethora of canals that wind throughout the area. Those canals are the perfect way to see most of the city, as they offer different views that cannot be seen from the side of the street or even the top of the buildings. Although, visitors who wander along the streets and over the bridges all say that they enjoy every inch of this spectacular destination no matter what they are doing.
This affordable, yet luxurious, hotel is within walking distance of St. Mark’s Square, the Rialto Bridge, the Malibran Theater, and numerous boutiques. Guests love that many of the rooms look out over the Bridge of Sighs, as it offers spectacular views at any hour of the day. The rooms and suites all have décor from the 18th century, yet guests will have all the comforts of home during their stay. Breakfast is free for guests at the two breakfast rooms, although it is possible for everyone to pay a small fee to have it delivered to their room.
This is the only hotel within the city of Venice that overlooks the Piazza San Marco, so every guest will have a unique view from their room. Every one of the fifty-one rooms are filled with antique furniture, elegant and luxurious bathrooms, and the most recent technology that is available. Everyone will love spending time in the Lounge Bar, as they serve delicious snacks and the tradition Venetian aperitif.
Trattoria alla Rampa
Breakfast and lunch are the only two meals that are served in this authentic Venetian restaurant at the end of Via Garibaldi, but visitors will need to wait for the one o’clock seating to begin their lunchtime dining. The locals fill the seats for the noontime lunch rush, where there is a special that includes pasta, a main course, wine, and coffee. The second seating for tourists offers an a la carte menu that includes delicacies like spaghetti alle vongole, zuppa di pesce, and risi a bisi.
Trattoria dalla Marisa
Affordable prices have been part of the charm of this restaurant since they served their first meal in 1965. The best seats in the house are the ones that are closest to the Canale di Cannaregio, but it can be difficult to find an empty table there during the lunchtime rush. At lunch, a cheap meal is comprised of pasta, the dish of the day, vegetables, coffee, and wine. The prices rise quite a bit for dinner, when the focal point of the meal includes seafood.
Pasticceria Bar Puppa
There is a new owner of this restaurant, but he worked hard under the original owner for years before being promoted. He serves many of the local favorites, but he has also put his own twist on many of the dishes. Many diners love his puppa burger, which includes a mixture of beef and wurstel, and topped with courgette, grilled aubergines, tomato, carrots, onion, and a fried egg.
Things to Do
The Grand Canal is considered the main street of this city, despite the fact that it is all water. This canal is two miles in length and many people will choose to travel along it via a gondola or a waterbus. The waterbus is the much cheaper option, but it is definitely not as romantic. Any mode of transportation along the Grand Canal is going to be extremely crowded during the day, which is why evening rides are often recommended.
This used to be the only bridge that people could use to cross over the Grand Canal, however, that is no longer the case today. Out of the four bridges, this is still the most popular, due to the intricate details from the Istrian stone that was used. The views from the top of this bridge are phenomenal, which is why many people will choose to cross this one over any of the others.
Bridge of Sighs
This bridge connects Doge’s Palace to the dungeons and hundreds of years ago it was used for prison transports. The prisoners would exit the courtroom after their sentencing, cross this bridge, and enter the prison, where they would spend the rest of their life. The name of the bridge is said to have come from the sighs that the prisoners made as they looked around the city for what would be their last time. There is some good news about this bridge though and that is the legend that states that two lovers who kiss while floating underneath it on a gondola will find eternal bliss.
St. Mark’s Basilica
This historical church can be found inside St. Mark’s Piazza and many different styles of architecture were used during the construction. Visitors will want to pay close attention to the four bronze horses outside the entrance, the numerous mosaics, the statue of St. Mark, and the lion with wings, which happens to be the city’s emblem.
This gallery can be found on the Grand Canal, directly across from the Ponte dell’Accademia. Inside the gallery, which used to be a convent, visitors will find works of art from before the 19th century. One of the favorite pieces of art seems to be the Vitruvian Man by Leonardo da Vinci, but visitors will also appreciate works of art by Bellini, Titian, Veronese, and Canaletto.
The streets and canals of Venice can be a little overwhelming after a while, which is why some visitors will want to take the time to venture over to the peaceful area of Lido. Lido is a small island that was created between the city of Venice and the Adriatic Sea. While many people choose to spend time relaxing on the sand and in the water when they are there, a few will also choose to wander around as they shop and dine in some of the best restaurants in the area.
This island is well-known for its glass blowing demonstrations, and while many people will feel like it is a tourist trap, it is still a great place to visit. There are plenty of glass blowing shops on the island, so it is possible for everyone to find one that is less touristy than many of the others. Everyone is encouraged to watch as the glass is blown, as it can be as entertaining as it is educational. While on Murano, visitors might also want to stop at the Campo Santo Stefano, the Palazzo da Mula, and the Basilica dei Santa Maria.
Anyone that loves food will enjoy watching how the locals purchase their items for meals for the day or the week. This market is full of fresh fish, vegetables, and fruits, and it is all constantly being snatched up by regular homeowners as well as those who work in the local restaurants. A word of advice to those who are visiting the area includes the fact that the food needs to be paid for and then the vendor will bag it up for the buyer. No one should ever pick up the food before they pay for it.
This palace can also be found within St. Mark’s Square and it is one of the most famous buildings in the city. The outside of the palace is stunning with its diamond pattern and arched design, and the beauty is only enhanced on the inside. It is in there where everyone can appreciate the intricate details, as well as the original furniture and artwork. It is recommended that everyone takes a tour of the palace, so that they can fully understand all the unique elements and features.
San Marco Campanile
This is the tallest building in the city at just over ninety-eight meters high, but it is a reconstruction of the original building that collapsed back in 1902. The original tower had been constructed during the 9th century and back then it was utilized as a watchtower. Since the new building was constructed, it has been damaged by fire, lightning, and even earthquakes. The campanile has a simple red brick design, but the arches and stonework add intricate details. The best feature is the golden statue of the angel Gabriel.
Teatro la Fenice
This infamous opera house has had quite the history since three big fires have threatened to destroy this building after it opened in 1792. The inside of the theater has been renovated, but the plush seats and gold interiors still give it an Old-World feel. Visitors can take an audio tour of the theater, but most people will want to see a performance there as well. Performances include not only the opera, but dance and musical too, so everyone will find something that they enjoy.
Correr Civic Museum
Anyone who wants to learn more about the history of Venice will want to stop into the Correr Civic Museum, because it is full of art and artifacts from the past and the quarters of the royals. A ticket to this museum is included in the admission fee to all the other St. Mark’s Square Museums.
The Jewish people in Venice were not treated very well in the past, especially during 1516 when they were forced to move to this section of the city. This was where the first ghetto in the world was located and those who did live there were only allowed to leave during the day. At night, they were corralled inside their homes, locked up, and guarded until the following morning. There is a walking tour available of this neighborhood, which is perfect for those who want to learn more about the history. Past visitors recommend entering the synagogues and the Jewish museum before stopping at a few of the stores and grabbing a bite to eat at one of the local restaurants.
Do’s and Don’ts
- Do choose a historic hotel whenever possible
- Do be aware of belongings at all times, as pickpockets are everywhere
- Do wear appropriate clothing for impromptu church visits
- Don’t eat or drink anything while visiting St. Mark’s Square
- Do greet shopkeepers upon arriving at a store
- Don’t feed the birds, especially when in St. Mark’s Square
- Don’t roller skate, skate board, or ride a bike within the city
- Don’t purchase a fake purse or any other fake merchandise, as anyone who does can and will be fined
- Do wander further from the main streets to avoid the crowds
- Do order the pasta and seafood at restaurants and stay away from the pizza since wood burning ovens are banned in this city
- Do wear comfortable shoes as everyone walks everywhere through the city
- Do keep to the right when walking and stay out of the way of those who are trying to reach their destination quickly
Money Saving Tips
- Purchase the Venezia Unica Pass for discounts at the best museums, tours, and attractions
- Ask for and drink tap water when in restaurants to avoid being charged for bottled water
- Purchase a bottle of wine to enjoy while exploring the city or sitting down for a picnic lunch
- Purchasing items for a picnic lunch is much cheaper than getting a meal at a local restaurant
- Purchase discount bus tickets to make public transportation cheaper
- Visit the city during the winter months for the best value, as things are cheaper and the crowds of people are fewer
- Purchase the Chorus Pass to gain free access to eighteen of the churches within the city
- Purchase the Tourist Travel Card to take advantage of unlimited access to the public transportation system
- Choose a waterbus over a gondola to tour the canals
- Drink espressos instead of coffee to save a bundle
- Choose to walk to many destinations, as it will save money and allows everyone to discover hidden treasures
- Utilize the free walking tours to learn about the city
Venice is such a fascinating city and travelers can spend days exploring the streets, the attractions, and the canals. Thankfully, everyone has quite a few options available when it comes to saving money in this beautiful city and they don’t need to sacrifice anything to enjoy it all.