Last Updated on 22/08/2022
Venice is a dream city, a carnival city … A dying city, a tourist feast during the plague … Venice is beautiful and unusual, but it is so difficult to see it for real if you have only a few hours of time.
Therefore, my advice is – be sure to come for a full day, better with an overnight stay and better without the burden in the form of small children, suitcases, group.
Ideally alone, this is a city of loneliness among the crowd.
One photographer recently published a book with photographs of a decaying Venice, a city that its residents don’t need. But you don’t have to be a photographer and go to some abandoned places to see it, just look around carefully, it can be seen even in the center.
Why this is so – probably only the Venetians themselves know. I can assume that the product is consumed in this form, so there is no point in doing anything at all. Or they think that Venice is already a palliative patient who is dying soon.
And Venice is in this state long time and perfectly got along with it, so it hardly needs our compassion. As one of my German teacher, born Italian, said about Italy: “There is a pile of rubbish here, ruins there, but how beautiful!”
As one say, forewarned is forearmed.
It is impossible to describe Venice like other cities (“look here and such, and then go to this church”). The palaces are very similar to each other, the squares are similar to one another, the signs are not easy to find, and there are also such signs as in the photo.
See the map in the part 3 – Around city, Grand Canal and regatte.
If you set yourself the goal of reaching a certain point in the absence of time, you risk not seeing the city. I remember that I had an attempt to find some special courtyard described in the guidebook. It was not even possible to determine whether this is the right area and how to get to the water. And the attempt to go to the church of Santa Maria dei Frari ended in a complete loss of direction. Therefore, we will leave the description of the palaces to the guidebooks.
lllustrated guide, like Bonechi’s book “Venice. Art and History”, helps you to understand, what you have seen, if you compare your photos and illustrations.
Important for everyone for first visit
Venice is big city, where it is easy to get lost. Therefore:
- Plan the whole day (better a couple of days).
- Plan not too much, no museum for first 1-day visit (only Doge’s Palace and San Marco cathedral have sense). Walk simply through the city, take trip along Grand Canal.
Don’t forget to take food and water, because the prices are extortionate. Don’t eat near San Marco.
Take your time walking around the city, take a gondola (just not in the most crowded place with tourists) – the city looks completely different from the gondola, go to San Marco yourself and go upstairs or go upstairs to the bell tower. Step aside from the mass of tourists, drink a coffee far from centre – Venice has lovely cafes away from tourists not at the price of a gold bar.
If you are with group and you don’t have much time
Part with group on San Marco, or better off by the bus, taking from guide the time of departure and the address of the hotel.
A tour of the Grand Canal promised by a guide may look like a closed boat from which you will not see anything at all.
You can do without an organized excursion by purchasing illustrated guide. Excursions take up time, which is precious in Venice – it is very difficult to navigate here, there are a lot of people, there are many canals, and bridges are not everywhere.
Therefore, if you have only half a day in the city, give up all the extras, including the Doge’s Palace, although it is not bad, and just walk around the city and go yourself along the Grand Canal.
If you are with small children
Our second visit to Venice was no better than the first. If the first time the whole impression was killed by running around with the group, then the second time the stroller was the killer. It was an endless fitness called “Take the baby out of the stroller, carry the stroller across the bridge, carry the baby, put it back in, convincing him that he needs it.”
Therefore, no strollers. In addition, you must be fully equiped with water and food and know in advance good off-center restaurant, if you cannot get by with sandwiches.
For young children, it is also relevant: favorite Venetian animals – dogs, pigeons, tourists and drug addicts – leave a lot of waste, syringes, urin and excrements in all corners and especially under bridges. Unfortunately, it turns out that children, who are already too heavy to carry, but from whom you cannot take your eyes off, are not suitable for Venice at all.
Honestly, it’s better to choose another city for your family trip and wait until the kids become smart and hardy teenagers.
There are more than enough excursion destinations around. Map of attractions around Venice.
How to get to Venice
Bus (for example from Lido di Jesolo) bis Piazzale Roma.
Train (for example from Padua) – near Piazzale Roma.
From airport – bus 35 to Piazzale Roma. Or vaporetto direct to San Marco and some other stops
Car – big parking lot at Tronchetto (22 euros for 24 hours)
From Piazzale Roma and Tronchetto – vaporetto 1 und 2 respectively to San Marco.
From Punta Sabbioni (bus 5 from Lido di Jesolo) – vaporetto to San Marco.
This information is more likely for those who are not in Venice for the first time or for one day.
Museo Correr is located in the square of San Marco. The museum was founded in 1830 by the Venetian patrician Teodoro Correr. Historical objects, flags, coins, maps, personal belongings of the Doges, weapons, sculptures (for example, Daedalus and Icarus Canova), paintings by Venetian artists are exhibited here. (link)
In 2008, the Palazzo Grimani was opened to the public. The palazzo contains the archaeological collection of Giovanni Grimani from the 16th century, one of the best of this time. Of particular interest are also the interiors made by Mannerism masters. (link)
How to get – walk from San Marco or Rialto
Along the Grand Canal in the order from Academy bridge
The Peggy Guggenheim Museum is a collection of contemporary European and American art, one of the museums representing the Guggenheim collection. Located in the 18th century Palazzo Venier, between the Accademia Bridge and Maria Salute. You can see American modernists, expressionists, cubists, surrealists, Dali, Picasso and Pollock. (link)
Gallerie dell’Accademia – collection of Venetian painting of the 13-18 centuries. Located at the Academy Bridge. The Academy was founded by the Venetian Senate as a school of painting, sculpture and architecture, similar to similar schools in Rome, Milan and Bologna. Contains a collection of works of art from the Byzantine era, the 14th century Gothic, Bellini, Carpaccio, Giorgione, Veronese, Tintoretto, Titiana, Tiepolo, Canaletto, Guardi, Bellotto. (link)
Museum of the 18th century Venice at the Palazzo Ca Rezzonico (Museo del Settecento venezianо Ca’Rezzonico). Vaporetto stop Ca’Rezzonico (link)
Collection exhibited in a 15th century palace Ca’ d’Oro presents paintings of the Venetian school, works of Tuscan and Flemish artists, bronze statues. A ceramics collection is exhibited in the neighboring mansion. (link)
Located near the Rialto Bridge, stop Ca ‘d’Oro
The Museum of Oriental Art is housed in a palace owned by the Pesaro family. The collection of Japanese art is especially extensive. Tthere are also departments of Chinese and Indonesian art. (link) In the same palace there is a gallery of contemporary art (Chagall, Klimt, etc.). (link)
Stop San Stae
Apartments in a Gothic palazzo (significantly rebuilt in the 17th century), costumes from different eras are also exhibited. (link)
Stop San Stae