One of the most romantic, beautiful cities in the world is Venice. From the picturesque canals and Venetian squares to the meandering streets filled with shops, cafes and restaurants, this old-world city is a must-see and should make everyone’s bucket list for top vacation destinations.
- St. Mark’s Square: This popular tourist spot had its beginnings in the 800-1100 period and is the main public square of Venice and also recognized as one of the most beautiful town centers in the world. Pre-Renaissance and Renaissance buildings flank the square including Doges Palace and St. Mark’s Basilica. Within the square, you’ll find numerous shops and cafes to enjoy people watching.
- Doge’s Palace: This stunning building was once the residence of the Doge of Venice and showcases a Gothic style. For many centuries, the palace hosted many government activities including judicial and legislative. A tour through many of the rooms leaves visitors in awe at the level of opulence each chamber has been decorated.
- Bridge of Sighs: One of the most fascinating tours is the Bridge of Sighs and the adjoining prison. Made famous from Casanova’s escape, walking across the Bridge of Sighs into the prison is like taking a trip back into time. The prisons cells, narrow steps and passageways give you goose bumps as you truly feel what it may have been like to have been a prisoner here back in the 15th and 16th centuries.
- St. Mark’s Basilica: This beautiful landmark in the Piazza of San Marcos is one of the most famous churches in the world. The interior of the church is adorned with lavish artwork including intricate mosaics, a golden altars and exquisite statues. For beautiful vistas of the piazza and the Grand Canal, you can ride up to the Tower.
- Gondola/Boat Tours: Most visitors can’t leave Venice without experiencing a ride through the canals in a gondola. Who wouldn’t want to be serenaded by a gondolier as you travel through the narrow canals, under quaint bridges and marvel at the beautiful architecture. For budget minded travelers, you can take a water taxi on the main canal area for about one-fifth the price of a gondola ride.
- Murano Island: A popular souvenir to bring back from this enchanted city is Venetian glass. Murano is well-known as the prime spot to learn the history about glassblowing and visit numerous studios and shops displaying glass art for sale.
- Rialto Bridge: One of the main bridges in Venice, this premiere vantage point offers visitors gorgeous vistas for picture taking of the Grand Canal. You’ll find numerous shops and cafes flanking the bridge on both sides making it a worthwhile stop on your itinerary.
- Lido Island: With so much sightseeing to do, you may want to getaway to Lido Island for an afternoon on a beach. Simply take a boat taxi where you can be dropped off by the gorgeous hotels and villas that used to be the prime watering hole for the rich and famous.
- Museum of Naval History and the Arsenal: To give you a sense of how powerful the Venetians were, make a stop at the Museum of Naval History and the Arsenal next door. You’ll learn about the Venetians superiority during maritime wars with their shipbuilding skills, maps and other naval items.
10. Grand Canal: The highlight of a trip to Venice is the Grand Canal. You’ll need to travel through the Grand Canal to arrive at major attractions such as St. Mark’s Square, Doges Palace, Rialto Bridge or your hotel. Arrival by cruise ship is really something whether on board or at a café watching an enormous ship navigating the waters. During your water transportation through the Grand Canal, you’ll marvel at the many, beautiful palaces that flank the waters – which can only be seen by boat