Last Spring, I traveled to Venice for the first time and have been in awe and love ever since. As I sat down to plan another trip to relive my adventure, I realized that I had forgotten to do a full Venice travel diary. Well, that’s gonna change right now. Of course, to understand and explore the ‘about’ of a place I made a list of interesting facts about Venice that you must’ve seen! This blog is, however, dedicated to elaborating upon my travel experience and everything I recommend and not to do in the city.
Venice is a city in northeastern Italy and the capital of the Veneto region. Collectively in the shape of a fish, this 1500-year-old city is a collection of 117 unique islands divided by the grand canal and connected by some spectacular bridges. Located in the shallow Venetian Lagoon, the city has an abundance of art and architecture. Consequently, the lagoon and a part of the city are listed as a World Heritage Site.
Venice is accessible by boats and flights. I definitely recommend taking a flight; book at least three months in advance to get the cheapest deals and you’ll save more than you could think. I also recommend staying in one of the centrally located hostels in San Marco as everything is easily accessible from the area.
Venice is mostly walkable and you’ll love it even in the evenings after dark. Avoid secluded areas and befriend your GPS because the streets are more tricky than you may think with abrupt ends.
Best time to plan your Venice travel is from September to November when tourists desert the city. Although the temperatures — which range from the upper 30s to mid-70s — necessitate some warm weather wear, the lowered hotel rates and the barren canals make it worth it.
The city is known for flooding all year around but October through January are considered high water seasons in particular. Another thing to consider is the recurring festivals that the city hosts all year, especially in February, July, and around the seasonal holidays. You definitely don’t want to visit when the crowd is flooding the city.
The Venice Lagoon
A world heritage site and a very unique one at that, the Venice lagoon is 15 meters deep at its deepest point. Further, all water fountains that route its water give out water which is directly consumable. Surprisingly, you can even swim in the lagoon; shouldn’t but can.
The Venetian Canals
There are 177 canals in the city. The S-shaped canal, the biggest one, is called the ‘Grand Canal’ and divides the main island into two halves. Indeed all the front doors of the houses face the canals because they are the main mode of transportation.
Venice, Murano, and Burano:
There are over 450 palaces (palazzi) in Venice. All the buildings and palaces in the city are a mixture of Byzantine, Baroque and Gothic styles. Allegedly, the best view of the city can be seen from the top of the San Marco Bell Tower. This was originally made in the 12th Century and restored to its original size after it collapsed in 1902. The Murano and Burano Islands a wonder in themselves with renaissance architecture, colorful houses, native glass-works and more. Both can be accessed by regular ferries from the main island.
Museums and Art Galleries:
Obviously, there’re several renowned museums and art galleries in Venice, in fact, they’ll be the highlight of your ‘Venice Travel Diary’ if you’re a true art lover. Must visits are the Doge’s Palace and St. Mark’s Square Museums, Venice Accademia Galleries, Ca D’oro – Franchetti Gallery, and Leonardo da Vinci Museum. You may skip those if you don’t like booking tickets in advance, though! Despite the long lines and crowds, though, they’re totally worth it.
I recommend long walks in the city (inevitable) and maybe amusing yourself on a Gondola ride but it really is overrated, though. And you’ll see most of all Venice in their awesome boat busses, so get a pass!
Note: While Venice is beautiful and a must visit, I canceled my second trip because of a simple reason: Venice is drowning. And the biggest reason is Mass Tourism: read more here. So, if you can, avoid your second visit or even first if it doesn’t break your heart much.
So, that’s all in my Venice Travel Diary. For more of my travel in style adventures, keep reading ERTSY. Till then, stay aware & mindful! x