Hi! Welcome to Complete City Guides!
My name is Patrick, I'm originally from Sydney (Australia) but grew up in England (my second home) - and I love exploring cities (and writing about it!)
I work online in marketing, which gives me the opportunity to travel around the world full time.
So while I am away, I keep this blog updated with full travel info. I tend to stay in a city for a few months at a time, to really get to know it - then I write guides on it.
Venice is an amazing and quite unique city that everyone should visit at least once. It is one of the best cities to wander and get lost in its many back streets! Every corner looks beautiful, and despite it being full of tourists you can really feel how quiet the island of Venice really is.
There are good airport links, so after reading this post about Venice there should be nothing stopping you from booking some cheap plane tickets to Venice for next summer!
Never been to Venice? Well you should! Although there are several other Venice-like cities (a quick Google for 'cities similar to Venice' brings up lots of suggestions), no city can compare to Venice itself!
The island of Venice is worth paying the extra for and actually having your accommodation there. We did, and it was nice to be able to just walk back to our apartment every night.
There is a big main river that cuts the island in half - Grand Canal. This is where the main waterbus routes go up/down (although the water bus is quite expensive if you don't buy at least a 24 hour pass).
But of course the whole city is built on canals, and you won't be able to walk far without going over a bridge or along the side of a canal.
As well as the mainland (which we didn't explore), there are several nearby islands. The main ones are:
Both are worth a visit (do it in one day!)
There are two main airports in Venice:
There are good links, and you will have no problems getting to the island of Venice itself.
We were travelling via Ryanair, so arrived at the Treviso airport. You can either get a coach from outside the airport direct to the main Venice island (€12, ~90 minutes journey) or get a bus to the city center of Treviso (approx 10-15 min journey €2.50 per person if you buy it from the driver (cheaper if you use a ticket machine before hand), then get a train to Venice (approx 30 min journey).
If you want more details, we have a dedicated page about how to get from Treviso airport to Venice.
The main thing to do in my opinion is to just go and explore! There are tourist attractions and things to pay to enter, but you can have just as much fun walking around and people watching!
If there was any city on each that was made to be explored on foot, without a map*, then it is Venice! You can walk everywhere (Venice is small enough), and it can be fun to just pick random back streets. The main tourist sights are signposted, and there is always the big canal (or Lagoon) which you will eventually stumble upon, so it is hard to get too lost!
* but have a map for finding you way back to where you are staying!
This assumes you arrive on day 1, have 2 full days, then leave on day 4. For example, arrive on Monday afternoon, explore Venice a little on Monday evening, then have all of Tuesday & Wednesday in Venice, then fly home on the Thursday. This is, in my opinion, the perfect number of days to spend in Venice.
Assuming you arrive late one day (then have two full days after that), you should use the first evening to just wander around on foot, get some food and get a feel for the city.
It won't really matter where you walk or what direction - the first night in Venice means everything is unexplored for you!
Today is all about Venice! (Tomorrow will be about the nearby islands). The island is small, so it won't matter too much what order you decide to do things. But here is what you should be sure to not miss:
Ok, you explored most things that Venice has to offer on foot yesterday. The island is small, so what else is there to see?
For the second full day here I recommend you buy a 24 hour public transport pass. This will mean you can use the water busses as often as you like within a 24 hour period. The tickets cost (in early 2018) €20 for 24 hours. It isn't cheap but worth it! Trust me!
I feel that two full days is perfect in Venice. It isn't too big, and is so busy with tourists during the day that it would become a bit annoying with a longer stay!
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