Venice, Italy is a magnificent city that is full of culture, religious history, and stunning architecture. The ancient buildings, 150 beautiful canals, and impressive structures make Venice a city that is unlike any other on Earth. It is the perfect place for a magical getaway that charms and enchants visitors who make trips to Venice.
The tricky part about visiting Venice is deciding on what to do. There are so many sites to see, street to explore, and churches to admire that the choices can be overwhelming. Therefore, it is essential to have a list of the top things to do in Venice to keep the adventures on track.
Why go to Venice? Here are the top 12 things to do in Venice.
- 1. Be Awed at St. Mark’s Square
- 2. Go Inside Mark’s Basilica
- 3. Enjoy Doge’s Palace
- 4. View the Grand Canal
- 5. Admire Ponte di Rialto
- 6. Visit the Oldest Building in Italy
- 7. Wine & Dine at Gritty Palace
- 8. Roam the Venetian Streets
- 9. Look Up to San Marco Campanile
- 10. Embark on a Food and Wine Tour
- 11. Ride in a Gondola
- 12. Go to a Carnevale Festival Shop
1. Be Awed at St. Mark’s Square
St. Mark’s square is the most famous and frequented piazza in Venice. This fame is because the square is home to various important buildings. These include St. Mark’s Basilica, Doge’s Palace, St. Mark’s Campanile, and Torre dell’ Orologio. All of these buildings are incredibly historic and spectacular to look at.
Many people come to this square to enter one of the buildings, while others come just to admire the architecture. Every inch of this square is ornately decorated and striking.
St. Mark’s Square is the perfect place to begin a day in Venice because the square holds so much beauty and offers the ideal way to start a day.
2. Go Inside Mark’s Basilica
St. Mark’s Basilica is one of the buildings located in St. Mark’s Square. It is the most sought-after tourist attraction in Venice and is consistently crowded. Everyone flocks here to admire the stunning architecture both on the exterior of the building and on the interior. This basilica was built in 1092 and is still one of the more beautiful works of architecture in the world.
The outside of St. Mark’s Basilica is full of hand-painted artwork, sculptures, and ornate details. Moreover, the inside is decorated on a whole other level. It is an artistic masterpiece that includes real marble, Renaissance paneling, and mosaics painted in gold that showcase the legends of the apostles.
This basilica is one of the most important religious buildings in Northern Italy. Spending some time to visit it and admire and appreciate this work of art and an essential piece of architecture should not be missed.
3. Enjoy Doge’s Palace
St. Mark’s square is home to another stunning building called Doge’s Palace. This building is an architectural masterpiece that is all white stone and walls that are diamond-patterned. The inside of the Palace is filled with original furniture, stunning artwork, and mind-blowing details. A tour of the interior is a must to fully understand and appreciate this amazing structure.
4. View the Grand Canal
Although there are hundreds of canals in Venice, there is one that stands out above the rest. This canal is called the Grand Canal. The Grand Canal is the largest and most beautiful in all of Venice and serves as the main waterway that divides the city into two parts. The canal is consistently full of water taxis, traditional gondolas, and other transportation boats.
The Grand Canal is lined on both sides with colorful buildings that date back to the 13th century. The combination of the striking canal and the pastel houses makes this a post-card perfect Venice attraction.
5. Admire Ponte di Rialto
The Ponte di Rialto (in English the Rialto Bridge) is one of the four bridges that cross the Grand Canal. However, this bridge is no ordinary bridge. It is the most iconic and impressive stone bridge in Venice. It is made entirely out of white stone, complete with stunning ornate details.
This bridge is an excellent place to take photos as well. From the top of the bridge, there are stunning views out over the Grand Canal and the surroundings of Venice. This attraction gets extremely busy, so heading here early in the morning is suggested.
6. Visit the Oldest Building in Italy
Torcello Cathedral is the oldest building in Italy. It is a historic basilica church that was constructed hundreds of years ago in 639 AD. This fantastic attraction within Venice has iconic decorations and an impressive lifespan.
7. Wine & Dine at Gritty Palace
Gritty Palace is one of the most luxurious hotels in Venice. This hotel has an upscale restaurant with an outdoor terrace presenting a magnificent view. The terrace is directly along the Grand Canal and offers the best view in the city of the beautiful Basilica di Santa Maria Della Salute. Getting a glass of red wine with a bite to eat here is one of the top things to do in Venice. The magical atmosphere, breathtaking views, and fantastic service are terrific.
8. Roam the Venetian Streets
Venice is a maze of winding streets, hidden canals, and cute alleyways. Exploring all these streets of Venice is the best way to see the city in its most authentic and fullest form. There is a new shop, a stunning view, or an old fountain around every corner just waiting to be discovered.
Venice is an incredibly popular tourist destination and can get very crowded during the day. The best time to explore Venice is early in the morning, between 7 AM and 11 AM. During these hours most tourists are sleeping, and the explorations are less crowded and more fun.
9. Look Up to San Marco Campanile
The tallest structure in Venice, standing over 320 feet tall, is San Marco Campanile. This structure can be found in St. Mark’s Square, along with all the other amazing buildings. However, the red brick exterior of this building is not what it is known for and lusted after. The enticing factor to San Marco is that visitors can go to the top of it. From the top, one can see panoramic views of the entire city of Venice. These views offer a stimulating and exciting way to see Venice from a new perspective and a viewpoint that cannot be found anywhere else in the city.
10. Embark on a Food and Wine Tour
Italian food is one of the best and most popular cuisines in the world. Italy is famous for its pasta, pizza, bread, and wine; therefore, a food and wine tour is a must. This tour is the best way to taste the flavors of Italy and experience this amazing culture through food. There are a plethora of excursions to choose from that offer the perfect opportunity to become immersed in Venetian cultures and traditions.
11. Ride in a Gondola
Traditional Gondolas are one of the main things people think of when they imagine Venice. Therefore, taking a ride in a gondola, while touristy, is a must-do activity while in Venice. The trips can last from 30 minutes to an hour and are 100% worth every penny.
These gondolas used to be the main form of transportation in Venice. With over 10,000 gondolas in the water at once, however, today there are only 500.
12. Go to a Carnevale Festival Shop
Carnival is a significant celebration in Venice that takes place every February. Over 3 million people come to Venice and dress in masks to parade around the city. This festival only takes place in February, but some stores sell the masks year rounds. The masks are very intense, and they are fascinating to take a look.
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Samantha Karen is the founder of the travel bog Sam Sees World. She is a millennial traveler on a mission to seek the new and unknown so she can document her experiences and inspire others to explore this wondrous world. Her objective is to provide valuable information on the best things to do, see, eat, and experience while traveling and getting some good Instagram photos along the way.
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