Venice: 15 Best Things to Do and Must-Try Gondola Rides


Venice: 15 Best Things to Do and Must-Try Gondola Rides


Welcome to Venice, the enchanting city of canals, gondolas, and captivating history. This floating masterpiece in northern Italy is a unique destination that offers an unforgettable experience for travelers. From stunning architecture to artistic treasures and mouthwatering cuisine, Venice has it all. In this article, we will explore the 15 best things to do in Venice, ensuring you make the most of your visit to this extraordinary city.

1. St. Mark's Basilica (Basilica di San Marco)

One of the most iconic landmarks in Venice is the St. Mark's Basilica. This stunning cathedral is a masterpiece of Byzantine architecture, adorned with breathtaking mosaics that depict religious scenes and historical events. Marvel at the grandeur of this basilica and ascend to the terrace for a mesmerizing view of the city.

2. Doge's Palace (Palazzo Ducale)

Adjacent to St. Mark's Basilica is the Doge's Palace, a magnificent Gothic-style building that once served as the residence of the Doge of Venice, the city's highest authority. Explore the opulent chambers, vast halls, and cross the Bridge of Sighs, all while delving into Venice's rich political and judicial history.

3. Rialto Bridge (Ponte di Rialto)

As the oldest and most famous bridge spanning the Grand Canal, the Rialto Bridge is an architectural marvel and a bustling hub of activity. Walk across the bridge and explore the surrounding market area, where you can find delightful souvenirs, fresh produce, and authentic Venetian crafts.

4. Grand Canal (Canal Grande)

Embark on a vaporetto (water bus) journey along the winding Grand Canal to witness the splendor of Venice's historic palaces and buildings. This waterway is the main thoroughfare of the city and offers a unique perspective of its architectural beauty.

5. Gondola Ride

A visit to Venice is incomplete without a romantic gondola ride. Glide through narrow canals and under picturesque bridges, as your gondolier serenades you with traditional Italian songs. It's a quintessential Venetian experience that will leave you with lasting memories.

6. Peggy Guggenheim Collection

Art enthusiasts shouldn't miss the opportunity to visit the Peggy Guggenheim Collection, a remarkable museum showcasing modern art masterpieces. The collection includes works from prominent artists like Picasso, Pollock, and DalĂ­, displayed in an awe-inspiring setting overlooking the Grand Canal.

7. Burano Island

Escape the bustle of Venice and take a short boat ride to the colorful island of Burano. Known for its vibrant houses and intricate lace-making tradition, Burano offers a serene and charming atmosphere that is perfect for a leisurely stroll and enjoying the local cuisine.

8. Teatro La Fenice

For a taste of Venetian culture, attend a performance at Teatro La Fenice, one of Italy's most renowned opera houses. Marvel at the stunning interior and immerse yourself in the melodious world of opera, ballet, or classical music.

9. Saint Mark's Campanile (Campanile di San Marco)

Climb to the top of Saint Mark's Campanile for a panoramic view of Venice's rooftops and landmarks. This iconic bell tower provides an excellent vantage point to capture breathtaking photographs of the city below.

10. Gallerie dell'Accademia

Art connoisseurs will be delighted by the extensive collection at the Gallerie dell'Accademia. Housed in a former convent, this museum exhibits a vast array of Venetian paintings from the 14th to the 18th century, featuring works by Titian, Veronese, and Tintoretto.

11. San Giorgio Maggiore

Take a short boat ride to the island of San Giorgio Maggiore and visit the eponymous church. Admire the impressive architecture, including the majestic dome and the breathtaking artwork that graces its interior.

12. Venetian Cuisine

Indulge in the delectable Venetian cuisine, which is a fusion of flavors influenced by the city's maritime history. Sample dishes like sarde in saor, risotto al nero di seppia, and delectable seafood offerings at traditional trattorias and osterias.

13. Ca' d'Oro

Also known as the Palazzo Santa Sofia, Ca' d'Oro is a splendid example of Venetian Gothic architecture. Now an art gallery, it houses a superb collection of sculptures and paintings, providing insight into the city's artistic heritage.

14. Santa Maria della Salute

This stunning Baroque church, Santa Maria della Salute, was built as a votive offering to the Virgin Mary for saving Venice from a devastating plague. Marvel at its impressive dome and the striking facade as you wander through its elegant interior.

15. Lido di Venezia

To unwind and enjoy the beach, head to Lido di Venezia, a nearby island that offers a relaxing escape from the city's hustle and bustle. Enjoy the sandy shores, sea breeze, and vibrant atmosphere, especially during the Venice Film Festival.


Venice is a city like no other, boasting a rich cultural heritage and breathtaking scenery that captivates every traveler. From exploring historic landmarks to savoring delightful cuisine and experiencing the magic of gondola rides, Venice offers an extraordinary experience. Embrace the enchantment of this city of canals, and you're guaranteed an unforgettable journey.


Q1: Is Venice a safe city to visit?

Venice is generally considered safe for tourists. However, like any popular destination, it's essential to remain vigilant and take necessary precautions against pickpocketing and petty theft.

Q2: When is the best time to visit Venice?

The best time to visit Venice is during the spring and fall months, between April and October. The weather is pleasant, and the city is less crowded compared to the peak summer season.

Q3: How do I get around in Venice?

Venice is a pedestrian-friendly city, and walking is the best way to explore its charming streets and bridges. Alternatively, you can use water buses (vaporetto) or water taxis to travel around the city's canals.

Q4: Do I need to book gondola rides in advance?

While you can often find gondola rides available throughout the city, it's advisable to book in advance, especially during peak tourist seasons, to avoid long wait times.

Q5: Are there any must-try Venetian dishes?

Yes, some must-try Venetian dishes include sarde in saor (sweet and sour sardines), risotto al nero di seppia (squid ink risotto), and fegato alla veneziana (Venetian-style liver and onions).

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