You are currently viewing Romantic Venice: Tips, sights & favorite places

Romantic Venice: Tips, sights & favorite places

  • Post author:
  • Post category:Italy

Ciao Venezia, you most romantic of all cities in Italy! We have to admit: Venice and we – it was more like love at second sight. Venice is not only romantic, but one thing above all in the high season: full! And touristy!

But who is surprised – Venice simply has to be seen. The flair of the lagoon city can hardly be described in words. Water wherever you look, artistic Venetian facades, postcard motifs on every corner and gigantic sights (above all, of course, St. Mark’s Basilica). Venice is an amazing city!

So that you can plan and prepare your trip perfectly, we have put together a detailed Venice travel guide with all our tips for the best sights. Of course, as always, there are a few great culinary recommendations as well as our hotel tip.

1. Venice tips at a glance: First information & FAQs Exciting facts about Venice at a glance Venice is a Lagoon City and was built on more than 140 Islands built over about 175 bridges are connected to each other. Through Venice flow therefore countless canals – some are very narrow, some in turn (like the famous Canal Grande in particular) quite wide. There are no cars in Venice. So really none, zero! Venice is connected to the mainland via a bridge, but immediately afterwards it says: Please park your car. One moves in Venice exclusively on foot or with the Vaporetto (= water bus).All the water poses great dangers: Acqua alta, i.e. “high water”, is the name of the winter natural event that regularly floods parts of Venice. In any case, the consequences of climate change and the resulting rise in sea levels are devastating for Venice. Science assumes that it is only a matter of time before Venice will sink. Is Venice overcrowded? YES, Venice is beyond a doubt hopelessly overcrowded. There is nothing to shake. Hardly any other city in Europe has suffered from mass tourism as much as Venice in the past decade.

The monstrous cruise giants who until 2021 were still allowed to moor at St. Mark’s Square. Thousands of people stream into the historic old town at the same time and spend almost no money – the exact opposite of sustainable tourism.

The good news: The pandemic has put a damper on this questionable development. Although Venice remains incredibly popular, we have the city in December 1024 experienced pleasantly calm.

A few tips to experience Venice as relaxed as possible:

Avoid the high season at all costs. This includes not only the summer months, but also other public holidays such as Easter. Venice is also bursting at the seams during carnival. We clearly recommend the low season – especially the winter. Also do without the weekend. During the week there is much less going on in Venice. In order to see popular sights such as St. Mark’s Square as empty as possible, we also recommend that you do not travel to Venice just as a day tourist. In the early hours of the morning, at sunrise, you can enjoy Venice without the crowds. How many days should I plan for Venice? Venice is comparatively manageable – both in terms of area and in terms of the abundance of important sights. It is rather the special flair of Venice that makes the city so special.

If you stay two nights, you can see the most important sights in Venice explore easily. If you also want to visit one or the other museum from the inside or go on an excursion (e.g. to Burano), we recommend three to four nights.

2. The top sights in Venice St. Mark’s Square (Piazza San Marco) Around the most famous square in Venice you come don’t mess around during your vacation. The dimensions of St. Mark’s Square are gigantic: it is 175 meters long and 82 meters wide. You only realize how incredibly spacious the Piazza San Marco is when you stand in front of it.

Most of the most important buildings in Venice are on or located around St. Mark’s Square. These include the following sights:

Markusdom (= Basilica Di San Marco), the central cathedral of VeniceMarkusturm (= Campanile di San Marco), i.e. the free-standing bell tower of the cathedralDoge’s Palace (= Palazzo Ducale)Clock Tower (= Torre dell’Orologio) By the way, St. Mark’s Square is open to the water. The morning hours here in particular are simply magical. And so as a tip: At sunrise it is also possible to capture St. Mark’s Square without crowds.

St. Mark’s Basilica The central building on St. Mark’s Square and undoubtedly The most important church in Venice is St. Mark’s Basilica. It is a true architectural masterpiece from the outside and inside, and will immediately amaze you.

First of all, the five huge domes and the artistically decorated facade catch the eye. The architecture was influenced by Byzantine style. In any case, we can promise that we have never seen a comparable church.

You can of course also visit the inside of St. Mark’s Basilica (which we would also highly recommend). Access to the interior of the church is free, for all additional sights in the cathedral, however, an extra entrance fee is due.

Our tip: Especially in the high season there is usually a long queue in front of the cathedral. There was no mention of this during our visit in December, but it is best to be there early or alternatively in the late afternoon. Also make sure you dress appropriately, ie covered shoulders, no shorts or skirts that are too short.

Sights in St. Mark’s Basilica Campanile: The massive, free-standing bell tower of St. Mark’s Basilica. We will tell you more about this in the chapter on the most beautiful viewpoints in Venice.Museo di San Marco: The cathedral museum, which shows several art treasures of the cathedral. You can also get to the cathedral terrace via the cathedral museum.Pala d’Oro: The valuable altarpiece made of gold and precious stones, which is probably more of interest to art connoisseurs.Tesoro di San Marco: The cathedral treasure. We decided (in addition to a visit to the bell tower) to visit the Museo di San Marco, i.e. decided by the cathedral museum and for good reason. We really wanted to enjoy the view from the cathedral terrace to St. Mark’s Square and the Doge’s Palace. During your tour you will also get an impressive bird’s-eye view of the nave of the cathedral.

Opening times & further information: Basilica di San Marco (official website)

Doge’s Palace (Palazzo Ducale) Right next to St. Mark’s Basilica, the next top sight in Venice is waiting for you: the Doge’s Palace. This massive, pastel-colored building is a masterpiece of Gothic architecture and simply impressive to look at.

The Doge’s Palace was once the seat of the Doge (i.e. the head of state of the Republic of Venice) and therefore the power center of Venice, so to speak. The building is correspondingly pompous – from the outside as well as the inside.

If you have enough time, you should also visit the rooms of the Doge’s Palace. On a tour of the mighty state rooms, you can really immerse yourself in Venetian history.

Our tip: The Doge’s Palace is one of the most important sights in Venice and therefore magically attracts visitors. In high season, we recommend booking your ticket in advance.

Tickets, opening hours & more info: Doge’s Palace (official website)

Bridge of Sighs (Ponte dei Sospiri) An inconspicuous sight awaits you right next to the Doge’s Palace: the Bridge of Sighs. This eleven meter long limestone covered bridge connects the Doge’s Palace with the former prison (Prigioni Nuove), spanning the picturesque Rio di Canal Palazzo.

The unusual name of the bridge is no coincidence: according to legend, the prisoners gave a last sigh while looking in on the way to prison the Venetian Lagoon by itself.

You have the best view of the Bridge of Sighs from the Ponte della Paglia. The photo spot can hardly be missed, because it is located directly on the water on the lively promenade.

Rialto Bridge (Ponte di Rialto) on the Grand Canal We present: The most famous bridge in Venice and one of the most important monuments of the city. The beautiful Rialto Bridge spans the Canal Grande – the most important canal in Venice, which meanders through the old town in the form of an S-curve.

To walk across the Rialto Bridge is a must when visiting Venice. The iconic view of the Grand Canal awaits you from above.

The Rialto Bridge is always busy. In the high season there is a dense crowd on the bridge , which unfortunately loses a little of its special charm. If you want to capture the Rialto Bridge deserted, you can try your luck early in the morning.

Ponte dell’ Accademia Hello Venice postcard motif! The Ponte dell’Accademia in the south of Venice is not nearly as famous as the Rialto Bridge, but gives you one of the most famous photo motifs in Venice. From the Ponte dell’Accademia you can enjoy a fantastic view of the Grand Canal and the imposing church of Santa Maria della Salute in the background.

Since the bridge was on the way to our hotel, we were there at different times – especially in the morning and evening hours you can take great photos here.

The bridge itself is quite unusual with its striking construction made of wood and steel , but it is definitely not one of the most impressive sights in Venice. The highlight here is clearly the view.

3. More sights in Venice for more time Gondola ride through Venice Not a classic sight, but one of the great highlights for many is a gondola ride through Venice. The singing gondoliers belong to Venice like the Eiffel Tower to Paris. Sailing through the canals of Venice in a historic gondola is definitely an experience that will be remembered.

The problem is that a gondola ride is comparatively expensive. For a private gondola ride (for up to 6 people) you need to travel with approximately 100 until 140 Euro (per gondola, not per person). The journey takes about half an hour. Higher prices are often charged at sunset.

It is cheaper to share a gondola with other people. In a certain way, the charm suffers as a result. You can book the gondola ride on almost every corner in Venice.

Our conclusion: We really enjoyed our private gondola ride, but we wouldn’t necessarily say that you can’t leave Venice without taking the gondola to have driven.

Dorsoduro District Venice consists of six districts. Most of the sights are in the San Marco district. But if you have a little more time, we definitely recommend going off the beaten track. Here we can highly recommend the Dorsoduro district.

Dorsoduro is Venice’s university district. You will notice that Dorsoduro is popular with young people at the latest when you go to the Campo Santa Margherita for an aperitivo. Countless bars and restaurants are located on this spacious square, which are particularly busy in the evening hours.

If you want to experience authentic Venice, is certainly correct in Dorsoduro. Here you can take a leisurely stroll along the canals and enjoy the Venetian flair in peace and quiet. A few more specific tips for Dorsoduro:

For aperitivo in the Osteria Al Squero: Here you can enjoy Venetian tapas (“Cicchetti”) with a view of the canal and an old gondola shipyard. Sweets from the bakery Enjoy Dal Nono Colussi: In this tiny, authentic “pasticceria” for over 60 Baked Venetian specialties for years. The view from the Marvel at the Ponte dell’Accademia: This bridge spans the Grand Canal and connects Dorsoduro with the San Marco district.

Libreria Acqua Alta “The most beautiful book shop in the world” can be read on the sign in front of the entrance. Not exactly modest, but one thing is certain: this bookshop is definitely one of the most unusual sights in Venice.

The charm is very idiosyncratic and original: Stuffed to the last corner, an old gondola as a bookshelf, several cats and, of course, not forgetting the small book terrace at the back of the store, which has become one of the most popular Instagram photo spots Venice has blossomed.

The Libreria Acqua Alta is no longer an insider tip. Even in December there was more going on here than expected. Personally, we think the hype surrounding this bookstore is a little exaggerated, but if you have enough time, you should definitely stop by.

Church of Santa Maria della Salute The baroque church of Santa Maria della Salute characterizes the cityscape of Venice. In addition to being one of the most important churches, it is definitely one of the most photogenic sights in Venice.

The church can be seen from many points in the city, including the Ponte dell’Accademia, St. Mark’s Square and, of course, from the top of St. Mark’s Tower. If you have enough time, we also recommend visiting the church up close.

The church is located in the Dorsoduro district, right on the waterfront – more precisely, at the entrance to the Canal Grande . It can be visited free of charge , but the interior of the church is much less magnificent than St. Mark’s Basilica.

4. Venice from above: Fantastic vantage points Rooftop terrace of the shopping center T Fondaco dei Tedeschi A little insider tip under The most beautiful vantage points in Venice is the roof terrace of the popular shopping center T Fondaco dei Tedeschi. Located directly above the Rialto Bridge, it gives you a fantastic 175 degree view over Venice.

The great thing about it: Access is completely free of charge, you only need to reserve the desired timeslot. We decided to visit just before sunset and would highly recommend it.

Reservation & more info: Rooftop Terrace T Fondaco dei Tedeschi (official website)

Campanile di San Marco The freestanding bell tower of St. Mark’s Basilica is the tallest building in Venice. At the top of the scarce 100 meter high St. Mark’s Tower is probably the most famous and certainly the most spectacular vantage point in the city .

The viewing platform gives you a dizzying view down towards St. Mark’s Square – what a perspective, wow! You can see in all directions from up here.

A plus point: The safety net is pleasantly large-meshed, so that you can take pictures without any problems. Unlike in comparable towers, you can reach the viewing platform quite comfortably by elevator.

Tickets: Available on site
Opening times & further information: Basilica di San Marco (official website)

Spiral staircase of Palazzo Contarini del Bovolo Less spectacular, but also worth seeing is the viewpoint on the top floor of the Palazzo Contarini del Bovolo. This Gothic tucked away palace is quite an eye-catcher with its striking facade.

You can take a look at the palace from the outside for free. If you want to climb the iconic, stone spiral staircase , you have to buy an admission ticket. Once at the top, a wonderful view over the rooftops of Venice awaits you.

The only downside: We personally find the entrance fee of 7 euros per person a bit too high for what is on offer. (The entrance fee also includes a small art exhibition that is not worth mentioning. The highlight is clearly the stairs and the view.) Nevertheless, we liked it very much.

Opening times & further information: Palazzo Contarini del Bovolo (official website)

5. Eating & drinking: Culinary tips for Venice The bad news first: The culinary Offer in Venice is unfortunately very, very touristy. You notice that at the latest when you stand at St. Mark’s Square and feel like having a coffee. 6,25 euros (!) for an espresso – without us! You definitely have to do a little searching to find great places to eat in Venice.

Before we provide you with a few culinary recommendations, we will briefly reveal a few important tips for your trip to Venice:

If you sit down at a table in a restaurant in Venice and are served there, a so-called “Coperto”, so cover charged. Often it is only 1 or 2 euros per person, but sometimes the prices are definitely excessive. A service fee is often added to the Coperto. As in the rest of Italy, the aperitivo holy. People meet in the early evening before dinner in the city’s wine bars (“Bàcari”) and ring in the end of the day. So-called cicchetti are served with drinks, which are small appetizers, similar to tapas in Spain. We strongly recommend a reservation in the evening – especially in high season. Recommendations for restaurants & cafes in Venice Farini: Perfect for a very good pizza to go! This bakery chain has several locations in Venice – including near the Rialto Bridge on the way to St. Mark’s Square. We can also recommend the Farini for a quick coffee. The pistachio croissant is delicious!

La Tecia Vegana: This tip goes out especially to all those who eat vegan. This (very) remote restaurant serves really good Italian cuisine – exclusively organic and vegan. So if you’ve had enough of pizza and pasta, this is the place for you. Make a reservation so that you don’t walk to the restaurant in vain!

Osteria Al Squero: This authentic osteria is a little insider tip in the Dorsoduro district. She serves so-called cicchetti, which are small appetizers (usually rolls with different toppings). The best way to do this is with an Aperol Spritz. The osteria is right on a canal, so you can enjoy the bites outside with a view of the water.

Dal Nono Colussi: In this tiny ” Pasticceria” have been for over 60 years baked sweet delicacies according to family recipes. Among other things, you can buy “fugassa veneziana” here – a specialty of Venice that is reminiscent of panettone. Just a tip if you are looking for a special culinary souvenir.

Restaurants on Campo Santa Margherita: On this spacious square in the Dorsoduro district, many bars and pubs can be found off the usual tourist paths. We went to the Bakarò restaurant and found it surprisingly good (despite the small vegetarian selection).

Best ice cream in Venice: As in the rest of Italy, there is there are also countless excellent ice cream parlors in Venice. Among the most popular are Gelato di Natura and Gelatoteca Suso.

6. Practical tips on arrival & transport Arrival: How do I get to Venice? By car Venice is in the north Italy, more precisely on the east coast in the Veneto region. Those who travel from Austria or southern Germany often come by car. From Vienna or Munich you are about six hours away.

Tolls are compulsory on Italian motorways . You pay the fee for this conveniently at the counter: you take a ticket when you drive up and pay the amount when you leave in cash or by credit card.

Venice is a lagoon city and is connected to the mainland by a bridge. However: After that you have to park your car and change to a so-called vaporetto (water bus)! Venice is a car-free city. It is absolutely impossible to drive there by car. (Even the post office uses the waterway here.)

There are several parking garages that come into question. We ourselves opted for the quite modern car park Tronchetto and have absolutely nothing negative to say about it. Just a few minutes’ walk from the car park you can change to the vaporetto and take it straight to the old town. The price is 22 Euro for one day (24 Hours).

By plane You can also come to Venice by plane. There are two airports: The central airport of Venezia-Tessera (“Marco Polo”) and the approximately 24 Treviso Airport, which is located kilometers north of Venice and is primarily served by low-cost airlines.

Here you can find cheap Search flights: Skyscanner

From Marco Polo Airport you can take the bus to Piazzale Roma, the bus station just outside the old town of Venice. From there you can either walk or take the vaporetto to the hotel.

You can reserve your bus ticket in advance here: Express bus from Venice Airport to the city

By train Last but not least, there are also good train connections to Venice from some cities. For example, the night train runs between Vienna and Venice, which takes about 9 hours.

The train station (Venice Santa Lucia) is relatively close to the city center. Depending on where your hotel is located, you can either walk from the train station or use the vaporetto.

Local Transport: Getting from A to B in Venice On foot Those who like to move will love Venice. Because we can promise one thing: you will cover many kilometers on foot in Venice. The most important means of transportation in Venice are clearly your own legs.

But don’t worry: Venice is not that big. The main tourist attractions are located in the San Marco district, just a stone’s throw away from each other. Nevertheless comfortable shoes should definitely be in your luggage – your feet will thank you.

Vaporetto For longer distances you can use the Vaporetto, the water bus. The vaporetti are, so to speak, the public transport network in Venice. Several lines run at regular intervals. With the vaporetto you can reach, for example, the parking garages on the outskirts or the neighboring islands of Murano and Burano.

Vaporetto tickets are comparatively expensive. A single ride costs 7,25 Euro. There are also day tickets (20 Euro) or multi-day tickets. You can buy your ticket from the machines or on board.

Our tip: You can now easily research the best way from A to B using the Google Maps app. Vaporetto connections are also displayed – very practical! By the way: Vaporetti are not to be confused with the (tourist) gondolas, which are primarily intended for panoramic tours.

Here you can find the network map: Vaporetto Venice (official website)

7. Tip: Excursion to Burano As great as Venice is – if it’s your time allows, then we strongly recommend that you take a trip to one of the other lagoon cities around Venice. In addition to Murano (home of the world-famous glass art), the island of Burano with its colorful house facades magically attracts visitors from all over the world.

Burano is tiny: You walked the island easily within an hour. (Or rather islands – because Burano actually consists of four islands that are connected by bridges.)

Be that as it may: There are no noteworthy sights (apart from the leaning church tower ). In the foreground is definitely the very special charm of the lagoon city. The colourful, densely packed houses shine in competition. In any case, you can look forward to plenty of photo opportunities.

We’ll tell you even more tips in the detailed blog article: Excursion to Burano

8th. Our hotel tip for Venice Are you still looking for a extraordinary Hotel for your Venice vacation? Then we have a very special tip for you: Il Palazzo Experimental.

The Art Deco style runs like a red thread through the whole house. Anyone who likes design hotels of this kind will love it here. This hotel will definitely be remembered.

If your budget allows, we strongly recommend that you book a canal view room . There is simply no better way to start the day than with a coffee (coffee maker in the room!) watching the hustle and bustle on the water.

Speaking of water: The hotel is located directly on the water, more precisely on the promenade in the district of Dorsoduro. Unlike the touristy San Marco district, Dorsoduro is a bit cozier and more “local”. We liked it very much.

To get to St. Mark’s Square (ie the area of ​​Venice where the most important sights are located) you walk about 20 Minutes on foot. That’s not a stone’s throw away, of course, but there’s so much to discover in Venice anyway that we the footpath didn’t bother us at all. Another plus point: Only 150 meters from the hotel is the San Basilio vaporetto station.

Our conclusion: An absolute feel-good hotel! The design is something special, the location is great, the wide view of the water is fantastic. The only downer is the rather high price level. In the low season you can always get a good deal. We would choose this hotel again in a heartbeat!

You can book the hotel here: Il Palazzo Experimental

9. Map: All sights & tips for Venice at a glance For better orientation you can find in this map all important sights and highlights in Venice a glance.

How do you get the most out of the card? Our tip: If you click on the rectangle at the top right, you can open the map in the Google Maps app on your smartphone. This way you can navigate comfortably from A to B on the spot in Venice.

Transparency: Affiliate Links This blog article contains our personal recommendations in the form of so-called affiliate links. If you book or buy something through the links, we will receive a small commission. For you, this does not change the price at all. A thousand thanks from both of us!

We are curious: Have you already been to Venice? Are you one of the fans or do you not really warm to the city? What other attractions can you recommend? We look forward to your additional tips in the comments.