Flights to Venice (VCE)

Flights to Venice’s palazzo-lined canals, romantic bridges, maze-like streets and, of course, singing gondoliers make your getaway truly magical.

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Flights to Venice

Venice is one of the most beautiful cities in the world. After your flights to Venice touch down and you catch a boat from Marco Polo Airport (it’s not a gimmick, but genuinely the easiest way to reach the city centre) it seems almost incredible that this city even exists.

And while Venice’s spires, domes and palaces might offer spectacular views from the water, once you’re on dry land the city doesn’t disappoint either. The churches and museums are packed with the remnants of when Venice was one of the richest trading posts in the world. Around every corner, you’ll find picture-postcard sights, secret squares and secluded alleyways – none of which are choked by cars. Losing yourself in a city will never be so much fun.

Indeed, wandering around without a map or itinerary is part of the experience. How else will you stumble upon Venice’s hidden gems and hole-in-the-wall joints? One of the best areas for a stroll is Cannaregio, a neighbourhood hugely popular with locals. It’s easy to spend hours in one of the canal-side cafes or cosy trattorias watching Venetian life go by. For one of the best views of the city, however, head off the mainland and across to the island where the Bell Tower of San Giorgio Maggiore stands. The vista of Venice and its waterways are spectacular.

It’s impossible not to hail a gondolier or splash out on a canal-side restaurant or hotel with views of the water. It’s absolutely worth it. You’ll never experience anything quite like Venice.

Tour the Grand Canal

The Grand Canal is incredible from a vaporetto (water taxi), and a water bus is a cheap but fantastic way to see some of the major sights. Cross the famous Rialto Bridge or go underneath it as everyone watches you glide past, and view the 15th century palace Ca' d'Oro and the Palazzo Venier dei Leoni from the water.

Grand Canal
+39 41 529 8711

Go on a gondola

If you don’t have a gondolier taking you along Venice’s famous canals, you’re missing out. To get the full effect, try hailing one from Bacino Orseolo, near St Mark’s Square. For a pared-down experience, there are also cheap gondola ferry rides that cross the Grand Canal.

Bacino Orseolo

Visit the Bridge of Sighs

Folklore says that if a couple pass under the Bridge of Sighs, their love will be eternal. The bridge over the Rio di Palazzo has become a symbol of romantic Venice, and one that’s well worth seeking out. Of course, it’s equally romantic to simply get lost among Venice’s charming narrow streets.

Bridge of Sighs
Piazza San Marco, 1
+39 41 271 5911

Visit St Mark's Basilica

A visit to St Mark’s Basilica is essential to understand Venice. It’s a symbol of the city’s status and is packed with precious objects and works of art brought to the city from around the world. Even from outside the building, it’s impossible not to be struck by the rich history.

St Mark's Basilica
San Marco 328
+39 41 270 8311

See the views from the Campanile

The tallest building in Venice, the Campanile is not quite as old as it looks – it collapsed in 1902 and had to be rebuilt. However, it now has the convenient addition of a lift, and the view from the top, looking out on the architectural marvel that is Venice, is quite incredible.

St Mark's Campanile
Piazza San Marco

Attend a festival

It’s rare to be in Venice and not find yourself in the middle of a cultural festival. The famous Venice Film Festival takes place at the end of August, the art and architecture biennales run for four months in alternate years, and during the third week of July, the city and lagoon are festooned with fireworks.

Various locations
Main office for La Biennale
Ca' Giustinian
San Marco 1364/A
+39 041 5218711

Ristorante Da Fiore (Italian)

Picture eating out in Venice, and your first image could be of enjoying simple Italian food as a gondolier quietly wends his way past the table. Both of these are possible at Michelin-starred restaurant Ristorante Da Fiore. If you can, book one of the two romantic canal-side tables.

San Polo 2002
+39 41 721 308

Quadri (Italian)

If it’s a romantic restaurant you’re after, it doesn’t get much better than this Michelin-starred eatery overlooking the Piazza San Marco. The menu from Chef Max Alajmo uses ingredients sourced from the Venice region. Try the hand-chopped raw Piedmontese beef with truffle sauce, anchovies, sea urchin and white truffle.

Piazza San Marco 121
+39 41 522 2105

Osteria Enoteca Ai Artisti (Italian)

It can only hold 20 diners, but the reason this restaurant is always packed is because of the quality of the food, not just its size. Unfussy home-style Italian cooking using only the freshest ingredients is the mantra, and if you can squeeze in, you’ll find one of the best value food experiences in the city.

Fondamenta della Toletta
Dorsoduro 1169A
+39 41 523 8944 (coming soon)

Osteria alle Testiere (Seafood)

Chef Bruno Gavagnin goes to the fish market, chooses the best catch of the day, and then cooks it for just 22 people per sitting every evening. This means that the attention to detail and service is remarkable, and that every day at Osteria alle Testiere is refreshingly different.

Calle del Mondo
Novo Castello 5801
+39 41 522 7220

Il Ridotto (Italian)

The Michelin inspectors called Il Ridotto “one of the most interesting restaurants in the city” when they awarded it a star, and Gianni Bonaccorsi’s establishment certainly lives up to that billing. With room for just 18, this is authentic Venetian cooking with a modern twist. The desserts are known for being some of the best in town.o

Sestiere Castello 4509
+39 41 520 8280

Club del Doge Restaurant (Italian)

For the wow factor, it doesn’t get much better than this elegant dining room in the Gritti Palace hotel. The beautifully conceived menu of Venetian classics from Chef Daniele Turco is best sampled on the terrace, with its views of the Grand Canal.

Campo Santa Maria del Giglio 2467
+39 41 794 611

The Gritti Palace

When the world’s cultural elite comes to Venice for the many biennales, this is where they try and book a room. A historical yet effortlessly modern hotel with a wonderful roof terrace, it boasts spectacular views over the Venetian lagoon.

Campo Santa Maria del Giglio
+39 41 794 611

Locanda Orseolo

An intimate, 12-room hotel right by St Mark’s Square that doesn’t break the bank might sound like an impossible dream, but Locanda Orseolo manages to bring plenty of Venetian luxury within a normal budget. It’s romantic, on the traditional side of comfortable and refreshingly friendly.

Corte Zorzi
San Marco 1083
+39 41 520 4827

Centurion Palace

Centurion Palace might look like a classic Venetian palazzo when you gaze at it from the Grand Canal, but inside it’s a plush, modern hotel with 50 stylish rooms. It’s a great base if you want to explore the Venice art scene, with the Guggenheim, Gallerie dell'Accademia and Punta della Dogana just a short walk away.

Dorsoduro 173
+39 41 34281

CA Maria Adele

This tranquil boutique hotel has just 12 rooms to choose from. Tucked away in the art quarter, it’s perfect if you’re looking for a romantic stay – it’s a favourite with honeymooning couples. You can choose where you want breakfast: in your room, on the terrace or in one of the reception rooms.

Dorsoduro 111
+39 41 520 3078

Aman Canal Grande

There’s opulence, and then there’s the Aman Canal Grande, famous for being the ‘seven-star’ hotel where Hollywood heartthrob George Clooney exchanged his wedding vows. Most of the 24 rooms overlook the Grand Canal, and features include ceiling reliefs from famous 18th century painters, mirrors, frescos and silk wall coverings.

Palazzo Papadopoli
Calle Tiepolo 1364
Sestiere San Polo
+39 41 270 7333

AD Place

This atmospheric boutique hotel is on a canal, right by La Fenice Opera House. Open the windows and you might hear the singing of gondoliers, or sit on the beautiful roof terrace and take in the view. The friendly staff have plenty of tips to help you get the most from your stay.

San Marco Fondamenta della Fenice 2557/A
+39 41 241 3234

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