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What to visit in Venice

Venice

If you’re spending a holiday discovering the sights of the Veneto region, one of the must-see destinations is of course Venice! From Camping Village Garden Paradiso, you can easily reach the city by taking a ferry from Punta Sabbioni.

Founded some 1,500 years ago on the islands of the Venetian Lagoon, Venice developed in a way quite unlike any other Italian or European city. Through trade with the East, the Venetians were able to build one of the greatest economic powers of the Renaissance and filled their city with thousands of works of art, housed today in churchespalacesschools and galleries.

Churches

Among the monumental churches, the best-known and richest in spiritual history is the famous Basilica di San Marco (St Mark’s Basilica), which overlooks the square of the same name. The two majestic Gothic basilicas of Santa Maria Gloriosa dei Frari and Santi Giovanni e Paolo are also worth seeing – due to the quantity of works of art they contain, they are considered veritable “museum churches”.

Venice’s Renaissance churches include San Zaccaria, with its majestic interior covered with famous paintings, and Santa Maria dei Miracoli, a small but precious gem. By contrast, Santa Maria della Salute, reflected in the waters of the Grand Canal, is the ultimate expression of Venetian baroque style. Don’t miss the two churches of San Giorgio Maggiore and Santissimo Redentore, two neoclassical masterpieces created by the genius of Andrea Palladio.

Palaces

Among the public buildings in Venice, the Doge’s Palace, with its rich collections of art and history, the Ca’ d’Oro, a Gothic palace that you can admire from the Grand Canal, and the Renaissance Ca’ Vendramin Calergi, now home to the Municipal Casino, are well worth a visit.

Schools

The Scuola Grande di San Rocco, which once looked after the sick and plague victims, is now a museum that houses the most complete collection of works by Jacopo Tintoretto. The Scuola Grande di San Giovanni Evangelista and the Scuola Grande di San Marco, meanwhile, are of particular interest for their architecture.

If you have time, it’s also worth visiting the Scuola di San Giorgio degli Schiavoni, which features numerous paintings by Vittore Carpaccio.

Museums

On your trip to Venice, you can’t miss the National Archaeological Museum in St Mark’s Square: with its collection of Greek and Roman statues, Roman frescoes, Greek and Etruscan ceramics, Egyptian mummies, coins, small sculptures and other artefacts, it’s a must for history enthusiasts.

You can also visit the Correr Museum, which houses maps, coins, doges’ costumes, ceramics, carved ivories, weapons, uniforms and numerous Venetian paintings from the Renaissance to the 19th century. The Doge’s Palace, meanwhile, houses the Museo dell’Opera, whose purpose is to conserve the palace itself, with its valuable decorations and collections of paintings, sculptures, weapons and antiques.

Finally, the Museo del Settecento Veneziano (Museum of 18th-century Venice) in Ca’ Rezzonico houses splendid works by Pietro and Alessandro Longhi, Piazzetta, Gianbattista and Giandomenico Tiepolo, Rosalba Carriera, and Francesco and Gianantonio Guardi.

Galleries

The famous Gallerie dell’Accademia feature a rich collection of paintings by the Venetian school, from its origins to the 18th century. The Galleria Internazionale d’Arte Moderna (International Gallery of Modern Art) in Ca’ Pesaro, which offers an interesting overview of modern Venetian and Italian art from the 19th and early 20th centuries, is also well worth a visit.

Art lovers will also appreciate the Galleria Franchetti, located in the Ca’ d’Oro, which houses works by Mantegna, Bellini, Carpaccio and Titian, as well as sculptures, ceramics and bronzes.

Don’t miss the Peggy Guggenheim Collection: this gallery is located in Ca’ Venier dei Leoni and features one of the most important collections of contemporary works of art in Italy and the world. To end on a high note, pay a visit to the Pinacoteca Querini Stampalia in the Fondazione Querini Stampalia, where you can admire numerous Venetian paintings from the 15th to 18th centuries.

A day in Venice: here are some tips for you!

The atmosphere in Venice is, as everyone knows, truly unique: besides the palaces, churches and museums, there is so much more to experience and admire, even off the usual tourist routes. For example, we recommend a visit to a Venetian squero – traditional shipyards where rowing boats are built, including the iconic gondolas. Or a stroll to the ancient Tessitura Luigi Bevilacqua in Santa Croce – founded in 1875, it still produces world-famous fine fabrics.

Have you always dreamt of taking a gondola ride? Then do as the Venetians do: cross the Grand Canal aboard the gondola ferry, for just €2! Even though it’s a short crossing and these particular boats are designed to accommodate more people than traditional gondolas, it’s still an unforgettable experience.

Now, where should you stop for a well-deserved break? If you’re travelling with children, take them to enjoy a delicious ice cream at Nico alle Zattere – this historic ice-cream parlour will delight the grown-ups’ palates too! At apéritif time, try the Cantina Schiavi – an osteria and wine bar with a genuinely traditional ambience, where you can taste classic Venetian “cicheti” and drink good wine.

When is the best time to visit Venice?

Considered by many one of the most beautiful cities in the world, Venice is an evocative city all year round. However, if you want to enjoy its beauty to the full, we recommend visiting it in the spring months (April, May and June) or autumn (September and October). During these periods, the temperatures are perfect. It is neither too hot nor too cold, which will make your walks along the narrow alleys (calli) and bridges really pleasant. You will also have less chance of experiencing floods and won't have to suffer the crowds of tourists that typically flood the city.

We also suggest you take into account the calendar of events that take place every year in Venice. In addition to the Carnival, there are many recurring festivals, based on Venetian tradition and culture. Mark the main events in your calendar so you will be fully prepared!

6 fascinating facts about Venice

  • When was Venice founded?

Tradition has it that Venice was founded on 25 March 421 CE, when three consuls from Padua laid the first stone of the city. However, many scholars believe that it is only a legend and that it is not possible to establish a precise date, since the formation of the city was the result of a gradual migratory influx of people.

  • When was the Venice Carnival revived?

With the fall of the Republic of Venice and the French occupation under Napoleon, the Venetian Carnival was banned in 1797. The secular tradition was revived in 1979 and since then the celebrations have been held between February and March, usually for two weeks ending on Shrove Tuesday.

  • When is the Festa del Redentore celebrated?

The Festa del Redentore is held on the third Saturday and Sunday of July. The festival commemorates the end of the plague of 1577, which killed about 50,000 Venetians.

  • When is La festa della Madonna della Salute held?

The Madonna della Salute is celebrated in Venice on 21 November every year during the plague of 1630 that decimated the population of the city.

  • When will the Venice Film Festival and Biennale take place?

The exact dates for the Venice Film Festival and the Biennale vary each year. Usually, the Biennale starts in the spring and ends in the autumn, while the Film Festival takes place between the end of August and the beginning of September.

  • How long has there been a fee for entering Venice?

Since 16 January 16, 2023, you have to pay to enter Venice. If you book at least four days in advance, the ticket will cost €3 (otherwise it is €10). Residents, commuters, students, and disabled persons and their carers are exempt.

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