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  • Veronika Georgieva

What to visit in Venice

Updated: Jun 2, 2023


One of the top destinations on any traveler's list is Venice. The city is located in the northeast of Italy and is known as the regional capital of the Veneto. Venice differentiates itself from the rest of the culturally and historically significant cities in Italy. It is built on more than a hundred islands, and the main means of transportation are boats and famous gondolas, which people use to travel the city's numerous canals. However, you can still take a car or a train to get to the city. In the past, Venice was known as an important maritime trade center with the name La Dominante. Nowadays, the city is recognized by names such as City of Canals, City of Bridges, and "The Sinking City," which come from its location.



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What not to miss?



St. Mark's Basilica



St. Mark's Basilica, also known as the Basilica di San Marco, is one of the most famous and iconic landmarks in Venice, Italy. This is an incredible example of Byzantine architecture, and it is located in the Piazza San Marco. The construction of the basilica began in the 9th century and continued over the following centuries, with many additions and renovations being made. The interior of the basilica is impressive, featuring a stunning collection of Byzantine mosaics, gold leaf decorations, and intricate stone carvings. One of the most notable features of St. Mark's Basilica is its famous Pala d'Oro, a magnificent altarpiece made of gold and precious stones. It is one of the most valuable treasures in the basilica. Visitors can also climb to the top of the basilica's bell tower and enjoy the stunning views of Venice and the surrounding lagoon. It is a steep climb, but the views are definitely worth it.

St. Mark's Basilica is a must-see attraction when you visit Venice. Keep in mind that St. Mark's Basilica is open daily for visitors, but there may be restrictions on access during religious services or special events. It is recommended to check the official website before visiting.




Piazza San Marco



Piazza San Marco, also known as St. Mark's Square, is the main public square in Venice, Italy. This square is located in the heart of the city. The square is named after St. Mark's Basilica, which is located at the end of the square. Piazza San Marco is one of the most remarkable tourist destinations and is very often crowded with visitors. Many famous landmarks are located there, including the Doge's Palace, the Campanile (bell tower), and the Procuratie Vecchie and Nuove, two monumental buildings that house cafes, restaurants, and shops. The architecture of the buildings in the Piazza San Marco is a mix of Byzantine, Gothic, and Renaissance styles, reflecting the long and complex history of Venice.

Many cultural events are hosted there as well, including the famous Carnival of Venice. There are no doubts that you can have a great time on the square, enjoying a coffee or a meal at one of the many cafes and restaurants that line it while listening to live music or admiring the beautiful architecture and scenery.

No matter the fact that the Piazza San Marco can be crowded most of the time, it is a must-see destination for anyone visiting Venice. It is a beautiful and historic square that offers a glimpse into the city's rich cultural heritage.




Doge's Palace



Another fascinating landmark is Doge's Palace, also known as Palazzo Ducale. It is a landmark Gothic-style palace located in Venice, Italy. In the past, it was once the residence of the Doge of Venice, the highest elected official of the Republic of Venice, and it also served as the seat of government and justice. The palace was first built in the 9th century, and in the following centuries it was continuously expanded. Its architecture reflects the unique blend of Gothic and Byzantine styles that characterized the city of Venice.

However, Doge's Palace is famous for its beautiful exterior, with its pink and white marble façade. One of the most notable features of the palace is the Great Council Chamber, which was once the center of political power in Venice. Visitors can also explore the palace's dungeons, where prisoners were once held and tortured, and cross the iconic Bridge of Sighs, which connected the palace to the nearby prison. The bridge gets its name from the sighs of the prisoners who crossed it, knowing that they were leaving the light and beauty of Venice behind. Today, Doge's Palace is open to the public as a museum, offering visitors to dive into the rich history and culture of Venice.




What else to visit?



Grand Canal



The Grand Canal is the main waterway in Venice, Italy. It is shaped like an "S" and stretches for approximately 3.8 kilometers (2.4 miles) through the heart of the city. It is an important part of Venice's history and culture and is one of the city's most popular attractions. Many landmarks are lined along the Grand Canal, including the Rialto Bridge, the Accademia Bridge, and the Church of Santa Maria della Salute. Moreover, there are some palaces and buildings that were built during the Renaissance and Baroque periods. However, the Grand Canal is also used as a transportation hub in Venice. The canal navigates water buses, water taxis, and gondolas through the city. Also, some of the festivals that are taking place in Venice use the canal. Part of these events are the famous Regata Storica boat race and the Festa del Redentore, which features a spectacular fireworks display. Overall, the Grand Canal is a fascinating and beautiful part of Venice and a must-see for anyone visiting the city.




The Rialto Bridge



Another remarkable attraction is the Rialto Bridge. It spans the Grand Canal and connects the San Marco and San Polo districts. In the 12th century, the bridge was built as a wooden structure; however, it was replaced by a stone bridge in 1591–91, designed by architect Antonio da Ponte. The Rialto Bridge is one of the busiest and most popular tourist destinations in Venice. It is surrounded by a bustling market area with many shops and restaurants, making it a lively hub of activity. You can climb the stairs to the top of the bridge to take in the stunning views of the city and the canal. So far, the bridge has undergone several restorations to maintain its structural integrity and preserve its beauty. In recent times, it has also become a symbol of Venetian culture and history and is often featured in art, literature, and films.




The Scuola Grande di San Rocco



The Scuola Grande di San Rocco is a historic building located in Venice. It was built in the early 16th century as a place of worship and a charitable institution for the poor and sick people. The building is named after Saint Roch, the patron saint of plague victims. The Scuola Grande di San Rocco is famous because of its impressive collection of artwork, which includes many works by the Venetian painter Tintoretto. One of the most notable rooms in the building is the Sala dell'Albergo, which features Tintoretto's masterwork, "The Crucifixion." This painting is considered one of the most important works of the Venetian Renaissance. The Scuola Grande di San Rocco is open to visitors and is a popular tourist attraction in Venice. It serves as a reminder of the important role that charitable organizations have played in the development of the city. It is a must-see landmark, and you should not miss a chance to visit and enjoy the incredible collections that are presented there.




The Peggy Guggenheim Collection



Of course, we cannot miss this magnificent landmark, which is attracting many tourists. The Peggy Guggenheim Collection is a modern art museum located in Venice, Italy. The museum was opened in 1980, after Guggenheim's death, and has since become one of the most important institutions of its kind in Italy. The museum is housed in the Palazzo Venier dei Leoni, the former home of Peggy Guggenheim, an American art collector and patron. More than 200 works of art by well-known modern painters, including Pablo Picasso, Jackson Pollock, Salvador Dali, and Joan Miro, are included in the collection. The museum's holdings also include works by not so well-known artists, and the collection provides a comprehensive overview of the development of modern art from the early 20th century to the mid-1900s. The museum is open to visitors and is a must-visit destination for people who enjoy and are interested in modern and contemporary art.




How to travel there?



The Santa Lucia Train Station, located on the city's northwest outskirts, is the best place to take a train to get to Venice. At Piazzale Roma, there is also a bus terminal and parking facilities close by. There is also a tiny airport in Venice called Marco Polo Venice Airport, and from there you can enter Venice by bus or boat. Another possible way to go to Venice is by plane. One of the busiest airports in Italy is Marco Polo International Airport, which serves Venice. The "Queen of the Adriatic" can also be reached from the Treviso Airport, which is about an hour's drive north of Venice. It is possible to go by car as well, however, you have to know that only a small part of the island is accessible to motor vehicles.




When to travel there?



Because of proximity to the coast, Venice often experiences warm weather, yet it can rain for practically the entire year. Humid summers and rainy, foggy winters are both possible. To avoid crowds, spring and fall are the best seasons to visit. If you want to spend a lot of time exploring without getting too much sun, springtime is the best time to go there. Every year, on around 60 days, Venice is inundated by high water from late October to early January. Check the Venice weather forecast frequently, and always have an umbrella!




Average costs



If you are still wondering what budget to prepare for your trip to Venice, here you can find some useful information. You should plan to spend around €71 ($76) per day on your vacation in Venice. In regards to the food, you have to spend around €20 ($21) on meals for one day. According to the transportation costs for one day, you should be ready to pay around €9.38 ($10) on local transportation. Also, the average hotel price in Venice for a couple is €74 ($79). So, a trip to Venice for two people for one week will cost, on average, €992 ($1,063). If you are going on a solo trip, you have to know that one week usually costs around €496 for one person. A trip for two weeks for two people costs €1,983 in Venice.




Where to eat?



Osteria Campo Santa Marina



This restaurant started as a place for sandwiches and now it turns into one of the most creative dining experiences. The place offers cosy and warmly lit atmosphere. You can enjoy the variety of traditional dishes, which has been presented in the form of art.




La Zucca



This restaurant is located along the canal and has one of the most romantic settings. Vegetables are playing a crucial role in the menu; however, you can enjoy the rest of the dishes they offer, such as rabbit with chestnuts. Be prepared that you will have to make a reservation in advance because this place is preferred by many locals and tourists.




Events


Venice Carnaval



This is one of the most fascinating events in Venice. If you have the chance to visit Venice during the Carnaval, then you should not miss this chance. St. Mark's Square is the focal point of several events, including the eagerly awaited "Flight of the Angel", colorful parades on the water, and regatta boat races. Hotels can assist in making arrangements for event tickets, costume rentals, and photo shoots. Be ready for an unforgettable experience.





Venice International Film Festival



This is the oldest and one of the most important film festivals in the world. The festival has influenced and promoted the business for more than 75 years, drawing A-list actors like Robert Redford, Jennifer Lawrence, and Matt Damon. It takes place for 11 days in late summer and is one of the most magnificent events of the year.



Vogalonga



This event takes place more than forty years during the spring. Vogalonga has raised awareness about the adverse impacts of motor traffic on the Venetian lagoon. Be prepared that during this event, the city is extremely crowded.



We've reached the end of the article about Venice. This city has a historic atmosphere, and we believe you will love it as much as we did! In the meantime, you can read other articles on our blog. How about planning a trip to Eger or Szeged? Remember to follow us@thewalkingparrot to be continuously updated on the new releases. We will be back soon with a new article!

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