The city on water is one of the most iconic and unique in the world. With its classic architecture, narrow streets and grand canal, it truly is a beautiful city. The best way to lose yourself in Venezia’s charm is to enjoy some of the things on this list while in the city.
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1. Float around in a Gondola
No trip to Venice would be complete without a cruise down one of the city’s picturesque waterways in an iconic gondola. Float down gorgeous waterways and underneath bridges and admire all the secret passageways that you could only possibly see from inside a gondola.
2. Admire St Mark’s Basilica
St Mark’s Basilica is the most famous of the many churches of Venice and one of the finest examples of Byzantine architecture in the world. There are many fascinating details to enjoy on the exterior, thanks to its incorporation of a wide variety of artworks from antiquity to the Middle Ages.
3. Ride a vaporetto down the Grand Canal
Board a public water bus—known as a vaporetto—and ride it the length of the canal, under the Rialto Bridge, by the colourful and crumbling façades of grand palazzos like the Ca’ d’Oro and the Ca’ Rezzonico, all the way down past the dome of Santa Maria della Salute, before disembarking at St. Mark’s Square.
4. Cross the Rialto Bridge
The true heart of Venice, built between 1588 and 1591, the bridge connects the districts of San Polo and San Marco across the Grand Canal and is an unmissable site when paying a visit to Venice.
5. Spend an evening in Piazza San Marco
Take a seat at Caffé Florian, Ristorante Gran Caffé Quadri, or Caffé Lavena, order a cocktail, lean back and relax as you are serenaded with sentimental waltzes and lively folk dances. Then, walk around the sparkling Piazza as it comes to life with the colours of the street seller’s products and evening goers.
6. Browse the Rialto Market
The open-air Rialto Market is a feast for the senses, as local farmers and fisherman unload trays of fresh squid, cuttlefish, crabs and clams, as well as baskets of whatever produce is in season, from cherries and grapes to peas and asparagus.
7. Try on a Venetian mask
Venetian masks are a centuries-old tradition of Venice and although the masks are typically worn during the Carnival season, they add to Venice’s colour and tourist’s delight all year round.
8. Visit Doge’s Palace
The Palace is the most representative symbol of Venice’s culture, which, together with the Basilica of San Marco at the back and the Piazzetta in the forefront, forms one of the most famous sceneries in the world. The imposing building has the one feature typical of Venetian architecture: lightness. Despite its considerable size, the multi-coloured façade decorations and the splendid perforation of the Gothic loggias, like stone lace, give us an elegant structure that isn’t heavy in appearance.
9. Shop for Murano glass
The art, craft, and tradition of Murano glass is as gorgeous as the city of Venice itself. Boutiques sell a dizzying array of whimsical sculptures and ornate chandeliers that make for absolutely stunning keepsakes.
10. Simply get lost in Venice
In a city built of islands, where there are 150 canals and 400 bridges, it can be genuinely difficult to find things in Venice, so why not just ditch the map and go exploring the city instead? You’ll find an abundance of quieter, less touristy areas, and supremely unique speciality shops.
By Jacinta Frazzetto