Venice Travel Guide

Where To Go

St. Mark’s Square

St Mark’s Square (Italian: Piazza San Marco) is the most famous square in Venice. The square extends to the right of the Doge’s Palace towards the water with its Piazzetta. The square is surrounded by the St Mark’s Basilica, St Mark’s Campanile, St Mark’s Clocktower and the Doge’s Palace. The architecture of the buildings around the square is typically Venetian.

Public Transportation:

  • Fermata San Marco
  • San Marco – San Zaccaria “F” – Vaporetto/ferry 1, 5.1, 14, MC, N

Doge’s Palace

The off St Mark’s Square Palace was the place of residence for the doge and the Venetian government for over 800 years. The building was built in a Venetian Gothic style. Since 1923 the palace has been a museum open to the public and tells the story of Venice’s rich culture and history. A tour of the Doge’s Palace can take a while so be sure to plan enough time for your visit.

Opening times:

  • 09:00 – 18.00 (last admission 17.00)

Admission:

  • Age 6 – 29/65+: 15€
  • Age 30 – 65: 27€

Public Transportation:

  • Fermata San Marco
  • San Marco – San Zaccaria “F” – Vaporetto/ferry 1, 5.1, 14, MC, N

Bridge of Sighs

The bridge of sighs crosses the 8-meter-wide Rio di Palazzo and connects the Doge’s Palace to the new prison in Venice. Construction of the bridge began in 1600 and ended in 1602/03. The bridge gets its name from the stories of prisoners crossing the bridge on their way to jail and sighing at their last sight of freedom through the window on the bridge. A very famous inmate was held in this Venetian prison and is also the only one to have ever escaped this jail, Giacomo Casanova.

Admission:

  • With a tour ticket for the Doge’s Palace

Public transportation:

  • Fermata San Marco
  • San Marco – San Zaccaria “F” – Vaporetto/ferry 1, 5.1, 14, MC, N

St. Mark’s Basilica

Beside the Doge’s Palace and on St Mark’s Square you can visit St Mark’s Basilica. The St Mark’s Basilica is the most famous of the city’s churches. It is a roman catholic church and the construction of the basilica that stands today started in the 11th century. This basilica is a gleaming example of the stunning Italo-Byzantine architecture. Be sure to dress appropriately if you plan on entering the basilica, as it is a place of worship.

 

Opening times:

  • Monday – Saturday: 9.30 – 17.00
  • Sunday and public holidays the times can vary

Public Transportation:

  • Fermata San Marco
  • San Marco – San Zaccaria “F” – Vaporetto/ferry 1, 5.1, 14, MC

St. Mark’s Campanile

A campanile is a bell tower and this bell tower is the tallest tower in Venice. The tower was completed in the 12th century and functioned as Venice’s landmark for sailors and sea men. If necessary, a fire was light in the tower at night and the campanile functioned as a lighthouse. The tower has been damaged many times in the past due to earthquakes and fires but today stands strong as a beautiful landmark in this wonderful city.

Public Transportation:

  • Fermata San Marco
  • San Marco – San Zaccaria “F” – Vaporetto/ferry 1, 5.1, 14, MC, N

Rialto Bridge

The Rialto bridge is the oldest of the four Canal Grande crossing bridges and one of Venice’s most famous constructions. Construction of the bridge began in 1588. The bridge has been open to the public since 20th March 1591 and offers a great view of the Canal Grande.

Teatro La Fenice

Venice is the home of the Teatro la Fenice which is Italian for theatre of the phoenix. The name of the theatre comes from its history. The theatre burnt down in the fire of 1773 but was then reopened on 16th May 1792 with its new name and then burnt down once again in 1996 and reopened in 2003. The building is beautifully decorated and a very nice performance location.

Opening times:

  • 10am – 5pm (may vary due to events)
Web Map

Basilica di Santa Maria della Salute

The basilica di Santa Maria della Salute is a beautiful baroque church located near the Punta della Dogana. The architecture is stunning and the art inside the building is lovely. Entry to the church is free and the view of Venice from just outside the church is a wonderful sight.

Opening times:

  • 00 – 12.00
  • 00 – 17.30

Admission:

  • Church: Free
  • Sacristy: 4€ (reduced 2€)

Public transportation:

  • Salute – Vaporetto 1

Murano

The island of Murano is known for its glass blowers and the glass artwork and products they produce. Visitors to the island can watch the glass blowers hard at work in a lot of the shops and enjoy the fascinating work they do there. There is also the opportunity to visit the glass museum and shop for products such as scarves, vases and jewelry made of Murano glass.

Public Transportation:

  • Venier – Vaporetto 3, 4.1, 4.2
Web

Canal Grande

The Canal Grande is the largest canal in Venice and is the main route for the Vaporettos and water taxis. The canal is about 4 km long and 30 to 40 meters wide. It starts at the Piazzale Roma and winds its way through the entire city center through to the Punta della Dogana.

Map

St. Mark’s Clocktower

The St Mark’s clock tower is a beautiful clock tower off the Piazza San Marco. This clock tower is one of the most famous architectural landmarks in Venice and the arch below it leads into the main shopping street of the city, the old Merceria. The clock’s astronomical features are beautifully designed and a very prominent feature.

Public Transportation:

  • Fermata San Marco
  • San Marco – San Zaccaria “F” – Vaporetto/ferry 1, 5.1, 14, MC, N
Map

Gondola Rides

The most typical and well-known way to explore Venice is a gondola ride. Until the 19th century, gondolas were the primary form of transportation for goods and products as well as people in this northern Italian city. Most of the gondoliers speak English and will tell you stories about the city or the sights you pass during the tour.

Ayo Recommendations

Alongside our Ayo information and travel guide here are some additional Ayo recommendations for your visit to Venice.

The Ayo recommended time to visit Venice is in April and May or September to November or if you’re interested in a more unique visit, have a look when the Venetian carnival is on the year of your visit.

It is also Ayo recommended to walk around Venice to get around. When walking around you can explore the city to its fullest. Due to the winding and maze-like nature of the paths throughout the city, Google Maps is not very accurate, and it is quite easy to get lost. It is Ayo recommended to look for signs on the side of the buildings or ask for a map and directions at a hotel reception before heading off.

If you decide to take a Vaporetto trip, there are tickets available directly at the stops. For parking during your Venice stay, it is Ayo recommended to either use the Tronchetto or Mestre garages, as they offer the best value for money.

There is precisely one beach area in Venice and that’s the Lido di Venezia. The beach is not a typical Venetian feature but if you really want that element included in your holiday then the Lido is the place to be. A wonderful part of this Northern Italian city is the are called Il Ghetto.

The pigeons shouldn’t be fed. This is not a punishable act, but it is not appreciated by the locals. Much like eating a packed lunch in public. This should definitely be avoided. An Ayo recommended place to eat is the area around the Rialto bridge. Another great bridge to see in Venice is the bridge of sighs and the Ayo recommended photo spot is the Ponte della Paglia.

Last but certainly not least, we Ayo recommend requesting a gondola ride along the smaller canals and not the Canal Grande.

How To Get Around

Car

The main part and center of Venice is a no car zone. There are a few different parking garages in and around Venice where you can leave your car during your stay. The closer you get to the airport and further away from the city center, the cheaper parking will be.

 

Water taxi

Water taxi trips are not particularly cheap but very time saving. You can book water taxis in advance to make sure you reach your destination on time and be sure to ask about the price before boarding.

 

Vaporetto

Vaporettos are the equivalent of a bus on water. They are one of the cheaper transportation options if you plan on using them more than once. For a map of the Vaporetto line and exact ticketing information, click here

 

Train

There are two main train stations in Venice: Mestre on the mainland and the central station Santa Lucia near the city center on the Canal Grande. Mestre and the city center are connected via a long bridge so there are busses that can take you from the train station to the Piazzale Roma.

Venice Gallery