Walking through Venice is like a dream come true. The Wonderful Island never ceases to amaze anyone coming to its shores. A city filled with tourists from all around the world who have come to immerse themselves in a trip of a lifetime.

We spent four amazing days in this incredible city and in this article we aim to share our top recommendations for your next trip to Venice.


Venice, the enchanting city of canals, effortlessly weaves a tapestry of history, culture, and timeless beauty. Nestled in the heart of the Venetian Lagoon in northeastern Italy, Venice stands as a testament to human ingenuity and resilience.

Founded more than a millennium ago on a network of 118 islands, the city has risen above the challenges of its aquatic surroundings to become a symbol of architectural marvel and artistic brilliance.

Renowned for its meandering waterways, iconic gondolas, and the absence of vehicular traffic, Venice invites travelers into a world where every corner tells a story and every canal serves as a pathway to discovery.

The allure of Venice lies not only in its physical beauty but also in its rich history. Once a maritime powerhouse, the city-state of Venice flourished during the Middle Ages and the Renaissance, leaving behind a legacy of grandeur that is still visible today.

The opulent St. Mark’s Square, or Piazza San Marco, serves as the centerpiece of this historic city, surrounded by architectural masterpieces like the Basilica di San Marco and the imposing Doge’s Palace.

Yet, Venice is more than just a static museum; it’s a living, breathing city where traditions and modernity coexist. The cityscape, with its pastel-colored buildings reflected in the tranquil waters, provides a picturesque backdrop for everyday life.

While the city has faced challenges, including the impacts of high tides and the constant threat of erosion, the indomitable spirit of Venice prevails, attracting millions of visitors each year.

Venice has also introduced in 2024 a €5 entry tax for tourists not staying overnight in Venice, which is scheduled to take effect no earlier than 2025. A trial period for the tax payment system is set for a duration of twenty days in 2024.

The actual enforcement of the forthcoming tax is contingent upon the analysis of the trial conducted in 2024.

Throughout the testing phase in 2024, the access fee will be set at €5 per day for entry into Venice between 8:30 and 16:00. The designated days for the 2024 trial are as follows:

  • May 11, 12, 18, 19, 19, 25, and 26;
  • June 8, 9, 15, 16, 16, 22, 22, 22, 22, 22, 23, 29, and 30;
  • July 6, 7, 13, and 14.

You can pay the Venice Access Fee tax on the official portal here.

Travel to and Around Venice

Venice’s accessibility is as unique as the city itself, offering diverse transportation options that set the stage for a memorable journey. For air travelers, the primary gateway is the Marco Polo Airport (Aeroporto di Venezia Marco Polo), located on the mainland.

We’ve often seen well priced flights from London. If you are looking for suitable flight options, make sure to check out this article with top tips on how to find cheap flights.

Upon arrival, a seamless transition to the heart of Venice can be achieved by utilising various transportation methods, including water taxis or the Alilaguna water bus service, which offers a scenic and leisurely approach to the city.

For those arriving by train, the Santa Lucia train station serves as Venice’s main railway hub, strategically positioned on the edge of the historic city. Travelers arriving by high-speed train from other major Italian cities or European destinations are greeted with a mesmerizing view of the Grand Canal as they step off the platform.

On this occasion we travelled by train from Milan to Venice as part of our summer 2023 Interrail trip.

From the train station, navigating Venice’s labyrinthine streets is an adventure in itself. It’s advisable to familiarise yourself with the vaporetto system, Venice’s water bus network, which provides a convenient and picturesque means of transportation through the city’s canals.

Getting Around Venice

The main mode of public transportation within the city is the vaporetto, a water bus that plies the Grand Canal and other major waterways. You can purchase single or multi-day passes for unlimited rides, allowing you to explore Venice at your own pace.

Additionally, gondola rides, though more of a tourist attraction than a practical means of transportation, offer a romantic and iconic experience, providing a different perspective of the city from its serene waterways.

Whether wandering through the narrow calle (streets) and crossing arched bridges or gliding along the Grand Canal on a vaporetto, every mode of transport in Venice contributes to the city’s immersive and enchanting atmosphere.

Having said this, we did try to walk and our sincere experience is that although the city isn’t fairly large and distances to attractions are short, the way the bird would fly as they say, navigating the streets of Venice can take you quite a while.

This is because there are no main arteries or straight streets, only little passage ways connected by bridges. We suggest you strongly consider a vaporetto pass.

Where to Stay in Venice

In general, there are plenty of hotels and short term accommodation options, however, we would recommend staying somewhere close to good transport links e.g. near a vaporetto pier or in the city centre. During our stay in Venice we stood in an Airbnb accommodation.

A few points to mention regarding short term accommodation in Venice such as Airbnb. There are plenty of options of this kind and for a longer stay they do seem to be the better value however, they can be tricky.

What we found is that many places practice different check in prices depending on what time you arrive. We are talking here of €50 penalties if you check in after 7pm and similar other practices. So make sure you read the listing description so you don’t get caught out.

If you prefer to stay in a hotel, we would recommend booking your accommodation through an aggregator such as or Agoda to get the best rates. Use the widget below to find the best accommodation in Venice for your specific dates.

Best Time to Visit Venice

Choosing the right time to visit Venice can significantly enhance your experience, allowing you to savour the city’s unique ambiance without the hindrance of large crowds or weather-related inconveniences.

While Venice is a year-round destination, certain seasons offer distinct advantages for different preferences.

Spring (March to May): Spring emerges as a delightful time to explore Venice. Blooming flowers add bursts of colour to the cityscape, and outdoor attractions come to life. This season allows visitors to enjoy Venice’s charm without the peak tourist crowds, providing a more intimate experience. Be sure to catch the Venice Carnival, usually held in late winter or early spring, for a spectacular display of masks, costumes, and festivities.

Summer (June to August): Summer brings warm temperatures and longer days to Venice, making it an ideal time for outdoor exploration. However, it is also the peak tourist season, and the city can become crowded, particularly around popular landmarks and attractions. Despite the higher number of visitors, summer offers enchanting evenings with pleasant weather, perfect for strolls along the canals or al fresco dining in the charming squares.

Autumn (September to November): Fall is another excellent time to visit Venice, as the summer crowds begin to disperse, and the city returns to a more tranquil state. The changing colors of the foliage add a romantic touch to the city, creating a picturesque backdrop for your explorations. Fall is also a season of cultural events and exhibitions, offering a blend of outdoor and indoor activities for visitors.

Winter (December to February): Venice in winter unveils a different kind of charm. While the weather can be cooler, ranging from 0 to 10 degrees Celsius (32 to 50 degrees Fahrenheit), the city takes on a quiet and magical atmosphere. Just be prepared for occasional acqua alta (high water) events, which may cause some flooding in low-lying areas. Be sure to catch the Venice Carnival, usually held in late winter or early spring, for a spectacular display of masks, costumes, and festivities.

Ultimately, the best time to visit Venice depends on your preferences and priorities. We went during August and we can definitely say the city is packed with tourists. It didn’t bother us but it did mean we had to wait our turn on a few occasions to get that good photo-shot.

Things to do in Venice

Venice, is a city that seamlessly blends the old and the new, offering a rich tapestry of history, art, and culture. Whether you’re captivated by the grandeur of St. Mark’s Square, enchanted by a gondola ride along the Grand Canal, or exploring the hidden gems of Murano and Burano, Venice promises an unforgettable journey through its timeless wonders.

To help you explore the city, we recommend the Venice Museum Pass with included entrance to the Doge’s Palace, San Marco Civic Museums

Venice, is a treasure trove of cultural riches and captivating experiences, offering a myriad of attractions that cater to diverse interests. From iconic landmarks to charming neighborhoods, here’s a guide to the must-see and do activities in this enchanting city.

1. Go with a Vaporetto on the Grand Canal

For visitors to Venice, Italy, the vaporetto emerges as an indispensable and iconic mode of transportation, offering a unique and picturesque journey through the city’s labyrinthine canals, most notably the renowned Grand Canal. We bought this Venice Waterbus and Mainland Bus Pass for the duration of our stay.

The vaporetto, essentially a water bus, is not only a practical means of getting around but also an experience that captures the essence of Venetian life.

It can seem intimidating at first but we found that Google Maps has the times and routes listed and can be quite useful. However, not all piers are listed correctly so we suggest you definitely get a map to use it in conjunction. You can see the official maps here.

To make the most of the vaporetto experience, consider boarding early in the morning or later in the evening when the sunlight casts a golden hue on the canal, enhancing the visual spectacle.

Don’t forget to have your camera ready to capture the stunning vistas, and be sure to secure a good vantage point on the boat to fully appreciate the beauty that unfolds along the Grand Canal.

2. See the Basilica di Santa Maria della Salute

The Basilica di Santa Maria della Salute remains a cherished gem among the many churches in Venice, Italy, inviting both pilgrims and art enthusiasts alike to marvel at its architectural splendor and bask in the spiritual tranquility it exudes.

This iconic church not only serves as a place of worship but also stands as a vantage point, offering breathtaking views of the Venetian skyline.

3. Explore one of Venice’s Oldest Cathedrals at Basilica Santa Maria Gloriosa dei Frari

Nestled in the heart of the San Polo district, the Basilica di Santa Maria Gloriosa dei Frari, commonly known as the Frari Church, stands as a testament to Venetian Gothic architecture and houses an impressive collection of masterpieces by renowned artists.

Constructed in the 14th century, this grand basilica remains one of the most significant religious and artistic landmarks in Venice.

The nave of the basilica is adorned with striking artworks, including Titian’s monumental masterpiece, the “Assumption of the Virgin,” which is positioned above the high altar.

When stepping in it made us feel we were more in an art museum that in a church. With its serene ambiance and captivating artistry, the Frari Church offers a resplendent journey through the tapestry of Venetian history and creativity.

4. See the Gates of the Venetian Arsenal

The Venetian Arsenal, known as the “Arsenale di Venezia” in Italian, stands as a historic testament to Venice’s maritime power and innovative engineering.

Established in the 12th century, this naval shipyard became a symbol of the Republic of Venice’s dominance in the Mediterranean and beyond. Located in the Castello district, the Arsenal is not only an essential part of Venetian history but also an architectural marvel that reflects the city’s prowess in naval technology.

The Arsenal’s vast complex consists of docks, warehouses, and workshops that once buzzed with activity, producing and maintaining the Venetian fleet.

The shipyard’s strategic importance allowed Venice to maintain a formidable navy, ensuring the republic’s maritime supremacy during its heyday. The Arsenal played a crucial role in shaping naval architecture and shipbuilding techniques, contributing to the evolution of maritime technology in the Mediterranean.

The entrance to the Venetian Arsenal is marked by the imposing “Porta Magna,” an iconic gateway adorned with statues and naval symbols. You can’t enter the compound itself as it still is an active military area but on some days there can be special expos where entrance is permitted.

5. Take a Photo on the Ponte dell’Accademia

The Ponte dell’Accademia, gracefully arching over the Grand Canal, is a quintessential symbol of Venice’s charm and architectural beauty. This iconic bridge, connecting the districts of San Marco and Dorsoduro, offers not only a practical crossing but also a splendid vantage point to admire the breathtaking views of the city’s waterways.

Built in the 19th century as a temporary wooden structure for the Accademia Art Gallery’s exhibition, the Ponte dell’Accademia was later reconstructed in 1932 using more durable materials. The result is a graceful arched bridge made of wood and steel, seamlessly blending with the surrounding historic architecture.

6. Pay your Respects at the Church of San Giorgio Maggiore

Situated on the island of San Giorgio Maggiore, just a short vaporetto ride across the Grand Canal from St. Mark’s Square, the Church of San Giorgio Maggiore is a beacon of architectural splendor that graces the Venetian skyline.

This Renaissance masterpiece, designed by Andrea Palladio in the 16th century, stands as a testament to both artistic brilliance and spiritual devotion.

The façade of the Church of San Giorgio Maggiore is a harmonious blend of classical proportions and exquisite detailing, reflecting Palladio’s mastery of symmetry and balance. The church’s prominent campanile (bell tower) rises majestically, offering visitors a breathtaking panoramic view of Venice from its observation deck.

Inside, the church is adorned with a collection of significant artworks, including Tintoretto’s masterpiece, “The Last Supper,” which decorates the high altar. The airy and luminous interior, characterized by Palladian principles of design, creates a serene ambiance, inviting contemplation and reflection.

7. Explore the Wonderful Doge’s Palace

Constructed over several centuries, with its oldest sections dating back to the 14th century, the Doge’s Palace reflects the wealth, influence, and grandeur of the Venetian rulers.

The exterior is adorned with delicate tracery, Gothic arches, and captivating sculptures, showcasing the intricate craftsmanship of the city’s artisans.

Inside the Doge’s Palace, visitors step into a world of opulence and political significance. The magnificent chambers, adorned with masterpieces by artists such as Tintoretto, Veronese, and Titian, testify to the rich artistic patronage of the Venetian Republic.

The Sala del Maggior Consiglio, one of the largest public rooms in Europe, is a breathtaking space adorned with Tintoretto’s enormous painting, “Paradise.”

The Doge’s Palace also reveals the intricate workings of the Venetian government, housing administrative offices, courtrooms, and the notorious prison cells known as the “Piombi.”

8. Check out the Bridge of Sighs

The Bridge of Sighs owes its name to the belief that prisoners would sigh as they caught their last glimpse of Venice through the small windows before being led to captivity.

Architect Antonio Contino designed the bridge with delicate white limestone tracery and small windows adorned with stone bars. Its enclosed passageway, which offers only glimpses of the outside world, adds to the sense of melancholy associated with the bridge.

We found that it can be a bit tricky to get that great shot through the bridge’s windows however, being patient will get you there ultimately.

This poetic interpretation has added a layer of romanticism to the bridge’s history, further intensified by its elegant design.

9. Learn about Italian and Venetian History at National Archeological Museum

With its carefully curated displays, the Museo Archeologico Nazionale di Venezia invites visitors to delve into the ancient roots of Venice, shedding light on the city’s connections with the Mediterranean world.

Visitors to the museum can explore exhibits showcasing artifacts from the prehistoric era to the Roman period, offering insights into the diverse cultures that have shaped the Venetian lagoon.

From ancient ceramics and sculptures to intricate mosaics and archaeological finds, the museum’s collection provides a glimpse into the rich archaeological heritage of Venice and its surrounding regions.

One of the highlights is the collection of antiquities from the Egyptian and Assyrian-Babylonian civilizations, contributing to the museum’s status as a hub for understanding the broader cultural exchanges that Venice engaged in over the centuries.

The Venice Archaeological museum is included in the Venice Museum Pass.

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10. Check out the Biblioteca Nazionale Marciana

The Marciana Library’s holdings are not limited to books; it also boasts an impressive collection of over 13,000 manuscripts, including illuminated manuscripts dating back to the Middle Ages. Additionally, the library’s map collection is a testament to the maritime and exploratory prowess of Venice.

In essence, the Biblioteca Nazionale Marciana is more than a repository of books; it is a cultural sanctuary that preserves the intellectual legacy of Venice.

Its historical significance, architectural beauty, and the wealth of knowledge it houses make it a must-visit destination for those seeking to delve into the intellectual heritage of this remarkable city.

Your visit to the National Library in Venice is included in the Venice Museum Pass.

11. Immerse Yourself in Venetian décor at Museo Correr

Founded by Teodoro Correr, a Venetian aristocrat and art collector, the museum’s extensive collection spans from the Venetian Republic to the 19th century.

You can see a diverse array of artifacts, paintings, sculptures, and historical objects that provide a comprehensive narrative of Venice’s evolution.

The Napoleonic Wing itself is a testament to the changing political landscape of Venice, as it served as the royal residence during the short-lived reign of Napoleon in the early 19th century. The rooms, adorned with lavish decorations and period furniture, provide a glimpse into the lifestyle of the imperial court.

Beyond its historical treasures, Museo Correr also boasts a stunning location. Its windows open onto the iconic Piazza San Marco, offering visitors not only a cultural experience but also a visual feast of the architectural marvels that surround this famed square.

The Correr Museum is included in the Venice Museum Pass.

12. Visit the Outstanding St. Mark’s Basilica

Step into the heart of Venice’s cultural and religious heritage with a visit to the awe-inspiring St. Mark’s Basilica. This iconic landmark, located in the bustling St. Mark’s Square, is a testament to centuries of Venetian history, artistry, and spiritual devotion.

As you approach the basilica’s magnificent façade, adorned with intricate mosaics and marble columns, you’ll be struck by its grandeur and beauty.

Many of the columns, reliefs, and sculptures were spoils stripped from the churches, palaces, and public monuments of Constantinople as a result of the Venetian participation in the Fourth Crusade.

Among the plundered artefacts brought back to Venice were the four ancient bronze horses that were placed prominently over the entry. Nowadays, the original horses are kept inside the cathedral whilst the ones outside are a copy.

Inside St. Mark’s Basilica, prepare to be captivated by a breathtaking display of Byzantine art and architecture. Marvel at the shimmering gold mosaics that adorn the interior, depicting scenes from the life of Christ, the Virgin Mary, and the saints. In a way, this basilica reminded us of Hagia Sophia in Istanbul.

Admire the intricate marble floors, intricately carved pillars, and majestic domes that soar overhead, creating a sense of reverence and wonder.

Take the time to explore the basilica’s various chapels, each adorned with priceless works of art and religious relics. Be sure to visit the Pala d’Oro, a stunning altarpiece adorned with thousands of precious gems, and the Treasury, home to a collection of sacred artifacts and relics.

13. Go up the St Mark’s Campanile

Built in the early 10th century, the Campanile underwent several transformations before acquiring its current form in the 16th century, designed by the renowned architect Giorgio Spavento.

Standing at a height of over 98 meters (323 feet), the tower is an exquisite example of Renaissance architecture, featuring elegant columns, arches, and a distinctive belfry with a golden angel weathervane crowning its summit.

Visitors to St. Mark’s Campanile can ascend to the top via a convenient elevator embarking on a journey that reveals breathtaking panoramic views of Venice and its landmarks.

The terrace at the pinnacle provides a 360-degree perspective, offering a bird’s-eye view of St. Mark’s Square, the Basilica di San Marco, and the picturesque Venetian rooftops.

We thought the view are simply stunning and offer an excellent overview of the city itself and the main island.

14. See the Clock Tower in St. Mark’s Square

Standing proudly on the northern edge of St. Mark’s Square in Venice, the St. Mark’s Clock Tower, or Torre dell’Orologio, is a splendid testament to the artistry and engineering of the Renaissance period.

This intricately designed clock tower not only serves as a functional timepiece but also holds historical and aesthetic significance in the heart of the city.

At the top of the tower, the astronomical clock, known as the Moors’ Clock (Orologio dei Mori), is a captivating masterpiece. The clock’s face displays the hours, phases of the moon, and the signs of the zodiac, all meticulously crafted to provide both practical timekeeping and a celestial display.

Two bronze figures, popularly known as the Moors or the Magi, strike the hours on a bell, adding a touch of theatricality to the passage of time. The clock tower definitely reminded us of the clocks in Prague and Strassbourg with their similar zodiac and celestial figurines.

15. See the Illustrious Rialto Bridge

Built in the late 16th century, the Rialto Bridge stands as a testament to Venetian engineering prowess and artistic ingenuity. Admire its sweeping curves, intricate stone reliefs, and arched porticoes, which have inspired artists, architects, and travelers alike throughout the ages.

As one of the oldest bridges spanning the Grand Canal, the Rialto Bridge holds a cherished place in the hearts of Venetians and visitors alike, embodying the city’s rich history and cultural heritage.

Crossing the Rialto Bridge offers a panoramic vista of Venice’s bustling waterfront, with gondolas gliding gracefully along the canal and historic palaces lining the water’s edge.

We think it’s important to beat the crowds and do make the extra effort to go early in the morning to catch those amazing shots of Venice and the Grand Canal.

16. Learn about Venetian Hi-Life at Mocenigo Palace-Museum

This historic palace, once the residence of the noble Mocenigo family, has been transformed into a museum and study center, offering a unique glimpse into the rich textile traditions and fashion heritage of Venice.

The museum’s collection includes a diverse array of textiles, garments, and accessories that span several centuries. Visitors can explore the evolution of fashion in Venice, admiring intricately embroidered fabrics, elegant period costumes, and accessories that reflect the city’s opulent history.

From lavishly furnished chambers to rooms dedicated to specific periods in fashion, the museum allows visitors to step back in time and envision the lifestyle of Venetian aristocracy. We actually thought that we learned more about the Venetian aristocracy from here than from any other previously mentioned museums.

The visit to the Mocenigo Palace is included in the Venice Museum Pass.

17. See the Europe’s First Jewish Ghetto

The creation of the Jewish Ghetto marked a pivotal moment in Venetian history, reflecting the city’s complex relationship with diversity and religious tolerance.

Despite the challenges and restrictions imposed on its residents, the Ghetto emerged as a center of Jewish life, culture, and scholarship, fostering a sense of solidarity and resilience that endures to this day.

Take a guided tour to uncover the hidden gems and fascinating stories that lie within the Ghetto’s labyrinthine streets. Visit historic synagogues adorned with exquisite decorations and intricate motifs, each bearing testimony to the rich cultural heritage of Venetian Jewry.

We found the ghetto to be interesting and the reality of it is that many Jewish residents still live there which is surprising to see that their culture has persevered through all these centuries.

18. Take a Boat Trip to Murano, Burano, and Torcello: A Venetian Archipelago Adventure

Embarking on a boat trip to Murano, Burano, and Torcello unveils a kaleidoscope of experiences, each island offering its unique charm and cultural richness. This Venetian archipelago excursion promises a delightful blend of artistic craftsmanship, vibrant landscapes, and historical wonders.

Murano: The Artistic Jewel of Glassmaking

Murano, renowned worldwide for its glassmaking traditions, beckons visitors with a mesmerizing display of craftsmanship. Explore the historic glass factories where skilled artisans meticulously shape molten glass into exquisite creations.

Murano is particularly famous for its Murano glass jewelry, an intricate art form that produces dazzling pieces ranging from delicate earrings to elaborate necklaces. Visitors can witness the glassblowing process, gaining insights into this centuries-old craft.

Afterward, explore the island’s charming streets, visit the Murano Glass Museum, and consider purchasing a unique glass souvenir to commemorate your visit.

Things to Do in Murano:

  1. Glassblowing Demonstrations: Attend a live glassblowing demonstration to witness the mesmerizing artistry of Murano glassmakers.
  2. Visit Murano Glass Museum: Delve into the history of Murano’s glassmaking tradition through a captivating collection of glass artifacts spanning different eras. This is included in the Venice Museum Pass.
  3. Shop for Murano Glass Jewelry: Explore local boutiques and artisan studios to find unique Murano glass jewelry pieces, from intricately designed pendants to elegant bracelets.

Burano: A Kaleidoscope of Colors

Known for its vibrant, pastel-hued buildings, Burano is a picturesque island where every street is a canvas of colorful charm. As you stroll along the canals lined with vibrantly painted houses, each hue telling a story, the atmosphere is nothing short of enchanting.

Burano is also celebrated for its lace-making heritage, and visitors can witness the delicate artistry involved in creating intricate lace patterns.

Things to Do in Burano:

  1. Admire Colorful Houses: Wander through the narrow streets and canals, admiring the rainbow of colors that adorn Burano’s houses.
  2. Visit the Lace Museum: Admire lace work at the museum or visit a lace workshop. This is included in the Venice Museum Pass.
  3. Indulge in Local Cuisine: Enjoy a meal at one of Burano’s charming trattorias, savoring fresh seafood and traditional Venetian dishes.

Torcello: Timeless Tranquility

Torcello, the most ancient of the Venetian islands, offers a serene escape from the bustle of Venice. The island is dotted with historical landmarks, including the Cathedral of Santa Maria Assunta with its striking mosaics.

Take a leisurely stroll through Torcello’s quiet paths, appreciating the timeless beauty of this less-visited gem.

Recommended Activity in Torcello:

  1. Explore Historical Sites: Visit the Cathedral of Santa Maria Assunta and the Church of Santa Fosca, immersing yourself in the rich history of Torcello.

The boat trip to Murano, Burano, and Torcello is a voyage through the diverse facets of Venetian culture, from the exquisite craftsmanship of Murano to the vibrant charm of Burano and the ancient tranquility of Torcello.

If you prefer to organise it yourself, the Venice Waterbus and Mainland Bus Pass includes the vaporetto journeys to all those islands.

Each island weaves its unique narrative, inviting travelers to discover the rich tapestry of the Venetian archipelago.

Other things to do in Venice

Here are a few more options for things to do whilst in Venice.

Top Restaurants in Venice

Venice, with its unique blend of history, culture, and intricate waterways, offers a culinary experience that is as rich and diverse as its storied past.

Venetian cuisine, deeply rooted in the city’s maritime heritage and the bounty of the lagoon, is a celebration of fresh, seasonal ingredients and traditional recipes passed down through generations.

Exploring the top restaurants in Venice allows visitors to immerse themselves in the delectable flavors that define Venetian gastronomy.

Venetian Culinary Highlights:

  1. Seafood Extravaganza: Given its proximity to the Adriatic Sea, Venice boasts an exceptional array of seafood. From delectable branzino (sea bass) to succulent squid ink risotto, the city’s best Venetian restaurants showcase the freshest catch prepared with a mastery that reflects generations of maritime influence.
  2. Cicchetti Culture: Embrace the Venetian tradition of cicchetti, small appetizers or snacks often enjoyed with a glass of local wine. From creamy bacalà mantecato (whipped salted cod) to delicate polpetti (small meatballs), these bite-sized delights offer a delightful introduction to the flavors of Venetian cuisine.
  3. Bigoli and Risotto: Venetians take their pasta seriously, and two dishes that shine in this culinary landscape are bigoli and risotto. Bigoli, a thick, whole-wheat spaghetti, is often paired with rich sauces like sarde in saor (sweet and sour sardines). Risotto, on the other hand, showcases the region’s exceptional rice varieties, with the popular risotto al nero di seppia (black ink risotto) being a true Venetian delicacy.
  4. Venetian Sweets: Indulge your sweet tooth with Venetian desserts that are as charming as the city itself. Tiramisu, a coffee-infused delight, originated in the Veneto region, and savoring a slice in Venice is a must. Other treats like fritole (small doughnuts) and zaeti (cornmeal cookies) offer a delightful conclusion to a Venetian feast.

As you explore the best Venetian restaurants in Venice, you’ll discover that each dish tells a story, weaving together the city’s maritime heritage, agricultural bounty, and culinary finesse.

Venetian cuisine is not just a meal; it’s a sensory journey that invites you to savor the essence of Venice on every plate. Below is a selection of restaurants we would recommend when visiting Venice:

Cantina do Spade

Traditional cicchetti, light bites & wine by the glass served in a cozy, wood-paneled bar. We decided to visit Cantina do Spade as being one of the better rated cicchetti bars.

It offers a good selection of finger foods, mostly cold. We suggest you also try the local wines as they are fairly reasonably priced and good. For an authentic experience try the “ombra” wine which is a home made (table) red wine which is light and refreshing.

Osteria da Pampo

Osteria da Pampo is a family-run tavern serving traditional meals from the Veneto & Liguria regions, plus local wines this place offers an excellent choice of foods. A bit off the tourist beaten path, this osteria has an excellent menu offering and good food all round.

We chose the seafood platter and we can truly testify that it was an amazing culinary experience. We paired it with some local white wine which complemented the dish perfectly.

Have an Affordable Coffee with a Priceless View at Museo Correr Cafe

We’ve all heard of the famously expensive cappuccino’s at the likes of Cafe Florian and others however, we propose an alternative option. When visiting the Correr Museum, we suggest you pay a short visit to the Museo Correr Cafe.

The cafe serves fairly good coffee and pastries but offers an amazing view of St. Mark’s Square, all for the modest cost of a cappuccino.

Check out Local Produce at Rialto Market

Another good way to explore the local gastronomic scene is to see the food market. The Rialto Market is a great place to check out what locals like to eat but also try a few nibbles for yourself.

Similar to the Barcelona Market, we encourage you to explore this food market uncovering various delicatesses.

Try out Some Great Seafood at Osteria Mocenigo

We found Osteria Mocenigo right next to one of the museums we visited. It offers excellent seafood platters but also typical Italian dishes.

Paul had the squid and veggie dish, all deep fried and delicious, whilst Hristina had the mixed seafood grill, a fairly good selection of different fishes.

The food felt fresh and overall the execution of the dishes was great all combined with a vary welcoming atmosphere.

Final Thoughts

Venice is a remarkable city. From its wonderful picturesque streets to its amazing churches this jewel is truly a testimony to the once impressive Venetian Republic.

A city and later a state built not on war but on trade which became a powerhouse of the whole world in all aspects. A city who’s citizens were true patrons of the arts and because of who’s generosity we so much enjoy today’s works by Tintoretto, Bellini and Titian just to name a few.

We truly think that it’s a duty each of us owes to ourselves to go and see this city of miracles at least once in our lifetimes.

Ready to book? Below are some recommendations to get your trip started:

  • Accommodation – would recommend booking your accommodation through an aggregator such as or Agoda to get the best rates. We also use TripAdvisor to read reviews.

  • Transport – consider for car renting or if you rely on public transport, you can use Omio for trains, coaches, ferries, airport transfers and even flights.

  • Activities – a great option is GetYourGuide, Klook or Viator for tours, excursions, experiences and tickets to many tourist attractions.

  • Travel money – we have Starling Bank accounts (UK residents only) with 0% fees on FX and a good Mastercard exchange rate. Revolut is another good option.

  • Internet abroad – with Airalo or Nomad you can access a wide range of eSIMs (digital SIM cards) available for different countries and regions.

  • Luggage storage – if you need to store your bags whilst exploring the destination, you can use Radical Storage to find your closest luggage storage and enjoy your journey until the very end.

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The Great Pyramid of Giza and camel ride

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