The city of Venice, Italy boasts a rich culture, unique sites, and the tastiest food! If you haven’t made a stop to this famous destination, you need to do it soon. Browse this blog to uncover essential information about the best things to do and breathtaking attractions that this gorgeous city has to offer.
Venice has a magical touch that sparks the imagination of the locals and international tourists alike. If you’re ready to have your breath taken away, book yourself at any of the best hostels in Venice, and prepare for an experience of a lifetime!
From coffees at Italian cafes dotted around the city to Gondola rides and museums that will take your breath away, discover the history, architecture, and culture of this iconic city.
Why should you visit Venice?
There are so many wonderful things to do in Venice. If you've never been to Venice, you're missing out on one of the most unique and beautiful cities in the world.
Nestled among a network of canals and connected by a series of bridges, Venice is like nowhere else on earth. And while it may be best known for its romantic atmosphere, there's much more to this city than meets the eye.
Here are just a few reasons why you should add Venice to your travel itinerary.
To begin with, Venice is home to some of the most incredible architecture in the world. From the opulent Doge's Palace to the sleek lines of the Ponte Rialto, every inch of this city seems to have been painstakingly designed.
And while you could easily spend days admiring the architecture, there are also plenty of opportunities to get involved in the Venetian way of life. Whether you're taking a gondola ride through the canals or sampling some local cuisine, Venice is sure to offer an unforgettable experience.
Is Venice expensive to visit?
That depends on how you want to experience the city.
If you want to go the traditional route and take a gondola ride through the canals, that will cost you a pretty penny, but it is also an experience you won’t easily forget!
However, there are plenty of things to do in Venice that won’t cost a fortune. You can explore the city on foot or by taking a water bus, which is a relatively inexpensive transport option.
There are also many free museums and art galleries to enjoy, so you can experience the culture of Venice without breaking the bank.
How to get to Venice?
If you're in Europe there are many ways to get to Venice. Are you staying in a close-by city? You can grab bus or train tickets through Omio and compare what days and times are the best to travel to see the canal city.
Alternatively, you can fly directly into the international airpot: Venice Airport Marco Polo (VCE). Find the best flight options on Skyscanner, where you'll be able to find the cheapest option among various low-cost airlines.
10 Exciting Things to Do in Venice, Italy
10. Grand Canal by Gondola with Commentary
Venice is a city like no other. Its winding canals and hidden courtyards are a world away from the hustle and bustle of big city life.
There’s no better way to explore Venice than by gondola. As you glide down the Grand Canal, you’ll be mesmerized by the opulent palaces and ancient churches that line the waterway. And your gondolier will provide a commentary on the sights as you float past.
A gondola ride is one of the most classic things to do in Venice. Cheesy, but in the best way! It also allows you a glimpse into Venetian life as you cruise through the narrow canals that crisscross the city.
At the end of your journey, you’ll have experienced Venice in a truly unique way.
9. Cross the Rialto Bridge
If you find yourself in Venice, do as the Venetians do and cross the Rialto Bridge. The bridge spans the width of the Grand Canal, offering pedestrians a stunning view of the canal below.
A trip across the bridge is also a great way to get a sense of the history of Venice. The first Rialto Bridge was built in 1181 and has been an important crossing point ever since.
Today, the Rialto Bridge is one of Venice's most popular things to do in Venice, so take advantage of it during your visit.
8. Punta Sabbioni: Roundtrip Boat to Venice
A boat trip to see Punta Sabbioni is one of the best things to do in Venice if you have plenty of time and would like to see a bit more of the region.
Punta Sabbioni is a small town located on the northeastern coast of Italy in the Veneto region. The town is situated at the end of a long, narrow peninsula, and as a result, it has a beautiful natural harbor. The harbor is protected from the Adriatic Sea by a large breakwater, and it’s home to several small fishing boats and yachts.
Punta Sabbioni is also known for its sandy beaches, which are popular with locals and tourists.
The town is easy to reach from Venice by boat and many visitors choose to take a roundtrip boat ride from Venice to Punta Sabbioni. The ride takes approximately 45 minutes each way and offers some stunning views of the Venetian Lagoon.
Once you arrive in Punta Sabbioni, there are plenty of things to do. You can relax on the beach, swim in the crystal-clear waters of the harbor, or explore the town's quaint streets and shops.
There are also many restaurants and cafes where you can enjoy some traditional Italian cuisine.
Whether you're looking for a day trip or a longer vacation outside of Venice, Punta Sabbioni is worth a visit.
7. Explore the Doge’s Palace and Bridge of Sighs
This grand palazzo was the home of the Venetian doges, the powerful rulers of the Republic of Venice.
Today, it houses a museum with an impressive art collection, as well as a number of important historical artifacts.
The Bridge of Sighs is another must-see attraction in Venice. This bridge connects the Doge’s Palace to a prison, and it’s said that prisoners would sigh in despair as they caught their last glimpse of freedom before being incarcerated.
If you want to see these two attractions, they’re easy to find and to see alone. However, there are also numerous guided tours that you can take to learn even more about these cultural spots!
6. Visit the La Fenice Opera House
Looking for a cultural kick? Then the opera house should be at the top of your list of things to do in Venice!
The La Fenice Opera House is located in the heart of Venice. The building itself is quite impressive, and it features a beautiful neo-Baroque design.
The interior of the opera house is just as stunning, and you'll want to take some time to explore it even if you’re not there for a specific show. Want to be part of a group? Join a tour so that you get the most details about this beautiful building!
If you're lucky, you might even catch a performance while you're here.
5. Admire Authentic Venice in the Dorsoduro District
This is one of the more relaxing things to do in Venice. The narrow streets of Dorsoduro are lined with lively cafes and shops and the canals offer a peaceful respite from the hustle and bustle of Venice's more crowded areas.
The neighborhood of Dorsoduro is home to many important historical landmarks, including the Ca'Foscari University and the Palazzo Ducale. But it's also a great place to simply wander around and soak up Venetian culture.
4. Gaze Upon the Golden Mosaics of St. Mark’s Basilica
There are many reasons to visit St. Mark’s Basilica in Venice, but one of the most compelling is seeing the stunning golden mosaics adorn the interior walls.
These mosaics were created by some of the most skilled artisans of the time and depicted religious scenes from both the Old and New Testaments. The mosaics are a sight to behold and provide a glimpse into Venice’s rich history and culture.
In addition to the mosaics, the basilica also houses several other works of art, including paintings, sculptures, and stained-glass windows.
Given all that it has to offer, it’s no wonder that St. Mark’s Basilica is one of the most popular things to do in Venice. If you’re looking to skip the long tourist lines, you can join a tour that specifically gets you to the front more quickly!
3. Take a Day Trip to Venice’s Outlying Islands
Looking for a fun day trip from Venice? Then look no further than the city’s outlying islands!
Just a short boat ride from the main island, these small islands offer a taste of Venetian life away from the tourist crowds.
You’ll be able to jump on public transportation boats to get to these islands pretty easily. But, if you’re scared of getting lost, there are numerous paid tours you can join that will guide you through exploring all of these other islands.
Here are some of the best Venice islands to add to your itinerary:
First on your list should be Murano, famous for its glass-blowing tradition. Browse the shops for beautiful handmade glassware, or take a tour of one of the island’s glass factories to see how Murano’s artisans create their masterpieces.
Next up is Burano, an island known for its colorful houses and lace-making tradition. Stroll along the canals and admire the pretty buildings, then pick up some handmade lace as a souvenir. Don’t forget to try one of Burano’s delicious seafood dishes while you’re there!
Last but not least, there is the island of Torcello. This is an island with a long history dating back to Roman times. Visit the centuries-old Cathedral of Santa Maria Assunta, or enjoy the peaceful scenery and views across the lagoon.
2. Admire Venetian Paintings in Gallerie dell’Accademia
The Gallerie dell’Academia is the most prominent gallery in all of Venice and is highly recommended for art enthusiasts.
The Venetian paintings on display here are some of the finest in the world, housing works by iconic artists such as Leonardo Davinci. The gallery itself is a beautiful setting in which to view the stunning art and drink in the atmosphere of creativity.
1. St. Mark’s Square - Piazza de San Marco
St. Mark’s Square is known as Piazza de San Marco in Italian. This is the main square of Venice and arguably one of the most beautiful city squares in the world.
The square is dominated by the imposing Basilica di San Marco and the Palazzo Ducale, which was once the home of the Doge, the ruler of Venice.
There are also several other interesting buildings around the square, including the Campanile, the bell tower of St. Mark’s Basilica and the Torre dell’ Orologio. The Torre dell' Orologio is a clock tower built in 1496, yet another lasting reminder of Venice’s incredible history.
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