10 Things to do in Venice – Get Lost

Venice, Italy is a city that captivates visitors with its unique charm and breathtaking beauty. As the capital of the Veneto Region, Venice is a collection of 117 small islands connected by picturesque bridges and canals. This city is not only rich in history and culture but also offers a wide range of activities and attractions that will make your visit truly unforgettable. In this comprehensive guide, we will explore the best things to do in Venice, providing you with insider tips and recommendations to optimize your travel experience.

1. St. Mark’s Basilica: A Marvel of Byzantine Architecture


Located in the heart of Venice, St. Mark’s Basilica is an architectural masterpiece that dates back to 1092. This stunning basilica is a perfect example of Italian Byzantine architecture and is renowned for its intricate details, ornate sculptures, and breathtaking frescoes.

Exploring the Basilica

As you approach St. Mark’s Basilica, you’ll be greeted by its magnificent facade adorned with intricate mosaics depicting biblical scenes. Step inside, and you’ll be immersed in a world of awe-inspiring beauty. The interior of the basilica is adorned with stunning frescoes, intricate marble floors, and Byzantine artworks that will leave you mesmerized. Be sure to look up and marvel at the golden mosaics that cover the domed ceiling, depicting scenes from the life of Christ.

Insider Tip: Skip-the-Line Access

To make the most of your visit to St. Mark’s Basilica, consider booking a skip-the-line tour. This will allow you to bypass the long queues and gain direct access to this magnificent landmark. By optimizing your time, you can fully immerse yourself in the beauty and history of this iconic basilica.

2. The Grand Canal: Venice’s Main Waterway


No visit to Venice would be complete without a journey along the Grand Canal. This iconic waterway winds its way through the heart of the city, offering breathtaking views of Venice’s grand palaces, historic buildings, and bustling activity.

Exploring the Grand Canal

One of the best ways to experience the Grand Canal is by taking a vaporetto, a public water bus that allows you to navigate the canal and explore its various stops. As you glide along the water, you’ll pass by iconic landmarks such as the Rialto Bridge and the stunning Ca’ d’Oro palace. Take in the sights, listen to the gentle lapping of the water, and immerse yourself in the unique atmosphere of Venice.

Insider Tip: Private Gondola Ride

For a more intimate and romantic experience, consider taking a private gondola ride along the Grand Canal. Drift through the narrow canals, passing under charming bridges, and enjoy the serenade of your gondolier. This is a truly magical way to explore the hidden corners and lesser-known parts of Venice.

3. Doge’s Palace: A Glimpse into Venice’s Rich History


The Doge’s Palace, located adjacent to St. Mark’s Basilica, is an architectural masterpiece that served as the residence of the Doge, the supreme authority of the former Venetian Republic. This historic palace is a testament to the grandeur and power of Venice during its golden age.

Exploring the Palace

Step inside the Doge’s Palace and embark on a journey through time. Marvel at the opulent interiors, adorned with intricate frescoes, magnificent artworks, and ornate decorations. Explore the grand halls, the Doge’s apartments, and the infamous Bridge of Sighs, which connected the palace to the prison. Learn about the fascinating history and political intrigues that shaped Venice’s past.

Insider Tip: Skip-the-Line Access

To make the most of your visit to the Doge’s Palace, consider booking a skip-the-line tour. By bypassing the long queues, you can optimize your time and delve deeper into the history and beauty of this iconic landmark.

4. Rialto Bridge: Venice’s Iconic Landmark


The Rialto Bridge is one of Venice’s most recognizable landmarks and a must-visit attraction. This historic bridge spans the Grand Canal, connecting the districts of San Marco and San Polo. It is not only an architectural marvel but also a bustling hub of activity.

Exploring the Bridge

As you walk across the Rialto Bridge, take in the panoramic views of the Grand Canal and the vibrant market that sprawls along its banks. Explore the shops and stalls on the bridge, offering a wide range of goods, from local delicacies to exquisite handcrafted souvenirs. Immerse yourself in the lively atmosphere and experience the vibrant energy that permeates this iconic Venetian landmark.

Insider Tip: Sunset Views

For a truly magical experience, visit the Rialto Bridge during sunset. As the golden hour casts its warm glow over the city, you’ll be treated to breathtaking views and a romantic ambiance. Capture the beauty of Venice as the sun sets over the Grand Canal and creates a picturesque backdrop for your memories.

5. Gallerie dell’Accademia: A Haven for Art Enthusiasts


The Gallerie dell’Accademia is a world-renowned art museum located on the south bank of the Grand Canal. It houses an extensive collection of Venetian art from the 14th to the 18th century, including works by famous artists such as Bellini, Titian, and Tintoretto.

Exploring the Museum

Step into the Gallerie dell’Accademia and immerse yourself in the rich artistic heritage of Venice. Admire the masterpieces on display, from religious paintings and portraits to breathtaking landscapes and sculptures. Take your time to appreciate the intricate details and the skillful craftsmanship that went into creating these timeless works of art.

Insider Tip: Guided Tour

To enhance your visit to the Gallerie dell’Accademia, consider joining a guided tour. An expert guide will provide you with insightful commentary, helping you gain a deeper understanding and appreciation for the art and history of Venice. With their expertise, you can optimize your time and make the most of your visit to this remarkable museum.

6. Explore the Charming Neighborhood of Cannaregio


Cannaregio is one of the largest and most authentic neighborhoods in Venice. It is located in the northern part of the city and offers a glimpse into the daily life of Venetians. With its charming canals, picturesque squares, and hidden alleyways, Cannaregio is a treasure trove waiting to be discovered.

Exploring Cannaregio

Take a leisurely stroll through the narrow streets of Cannaregio and soak in the local atmosphere. Explore the lively Strada Nuova, the neighborhood’s main thoroughfare, lined with shops, cafes, and restaurants. Visit the historic Jewish Ghetto, the first of its kind in Europe, and learn about its rich cultural heritage. Don’t forget to indulge in the local cuisine, savoring traditional Venetian dishes and delightful cicchetti, small bites that are perfect for sharing.

Insider Tip: Off-the-Beaten-Path Gems

In Cannaregio, venture off the beaten path and discover hidden gems that are often overlooked by tourists. Explore the quieter canals and squares, where you can escape the crowds and experience the authentic charm of Venice. As you wander, embrace the slower pace of life and appreciate the beauty and tranquility that can be found in every corner of this enchanting neighborhood.

7. Discover the Island of Murano: A Haven for Glass Artistry


Just a short vaporetto ride from Venice lies the island of Murano, renowned for its centuries-old tradition of glassmaking. This small island is home to talented artisans who have perfected the art of creating intricate glassware, from delicate chandeliers to vibrant sculptures.

Exploring Murano

Visit the various glass factories and workshops on the island, where you can witness the mesmerizing process of glassblowing firsthand. Marvel at the skill and precision of the artisans as they transform molten glass into exquisite works of art. Don’t forget to browse the local shops and galleries, where you can purchase unique glass pieces to bring a touch of Murano’s artistry back home with you.

Insider Tip: Glassmaking Demonstrations

To truly immerse yourself in the world of Murano glass, consider attending a glassmaking demonstration. Many factories offer these experiences, allowing you to see the artistry up close and gain a deeper appreciation for this centuries-old craft. By optimizing your visit to Murano, you can witness the magic of glassmaking and support the local artisans who continue to keep this tradition alive.

8. Experience the Venice Biennale: A Celebration of Contemporary Art


The Venice Biennale is one of the most prestigious art exhibitions in the world, showcasing the best of contemporary art from around the globe. Held every two years, this international event attracts artists, curators, and art enthusiasts who come together to celebrate creativity and innovation.

Exploring the Biennale

Plan your visit to Venice during the Venice Biennale to immerse yourself in the vibrant world of contemporary art. Explore the various pavilions and exhibitions scattered throughout the city, from the Giardini to the Arsenale. Marvel at the thought-provoking installations, avant-garde sculptures, and captivating performances that push the boundaries of artistic expression. With each edition of the Biennale offering a unique theme and a fresh perspective, you can optimize your experience by delving into the cutting-edge world of contemporary art.

Insider Tip: Off-Season Visits

To avoid the crowds and fully appreciate the Venice Biennale, consider visiting during the off-season months. By optimizing your timing, you can navigate the exhibitions with ease and have a more intimate encounter with the artworks. Enjoy the freedom to explore at your own pace and engage with the art on a deeper level, making your visit to the Biennale a truly unforgettable experience.

9. Indulge in Venetian Cuisine: A Gastronomic Delight


Venice is not only a feast for the eyes but also a gastronomic paradise. The city’s cuisine is a reflection of its maritime heritage and unique geographical location. From fresh seafood delicacies to traditional Venetian dishes, the culinary offerings in Venice are sure to tantalize your taste buds.

Exploring Venetian Cuisine

Savor the flavors of Venetian cuisine by indulging in local specialties. Start your culinary journey with a plate of cicchetti, bite-sized snacks that are perfect for sharing. Sample the famous Venetian seafood risotto, prepared with the finest local ingredients. Don’t miss the opportunity to try sarde in saor, a traditional dish of marinated sardines that showcases the delicate balance of sweet and sour flavors. Pair your meal with a glass of Prosecco, the sparkling wine synonymous with the Veneto region.

Insider Tip: Osterias and Bacaros

To truly experience the essence of Venetian cuisine, venture beyond the touristy areas and seek out authentic osterias and bacaros. These local taverns and wine bars offer a more intimate and immersive dining experience, where you can mingle with the locals and savor traditional dishes prepared with love and care. By optimizing your dining choices, you can discover hidden culinary gems and create unforgettable gastronomic memories in Venice.

10. Enjoy a Spritz by the Canals: A Venetian Tradition


No visit to Venice would be complete without enjoying a refreshing spritz by the canals. This iconic Venetian cocktail has become a symbol of the city’s vibrant lifestyle and is the perfect way to relax and soak in the Venetian atmosphere.

Exploring Venetian Spritz

Join the locals in a time-honored tradition by sipping a spritz at one of the many charming bars and cafes that line the canals. Watch the gondolas glide by as you savor the bittersweet flavors of the spritz. Optimize your experience by choosing a prime spot with a view of the bustling canals, allowing you to fully immerse yourself in the lively ambiance of Venice.

Insider Tip: Aperitivo Hour

Make the most of your spritz experience by visiting during aperitivo hour, a cherished Italian tradition. Many bars offer complimentary appetizers with your drink, allowing you to sample a variety of delicious bites while enjoying your spritz. By optimizing your timing, you can indulge in a leisurely aperitivo, soaking up the atmosphere and savoring the flavors of Venice.


Venice, Italy is a destination that offers a wealth of experiences for every traveler. From marveling at architectural wonders to immersing yourself in the vibrant art scene, exploring charming neighborhoods to indulging in exquisite cuisine, Venice has something to offer for everyone. By optimizing your travel experience and delving deeper into the wonders of this unique city, you can create memories that will last a lifetime. So pack your bags, embrace the magic of Venice, and embark on a journey that will leave you with a newfound appreciation for this extraordinary destination.

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