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Flights to Venice, Italy

Venice – A city built on water 

Venice is the most unique and unusual city in the world. It is built on water, in a shallow lagoon of the Adriatic Sea. History has turned it into a city of canals, bridges, architecture, art and culture. Its contemporary relevance is demonstrated by the quantity of visitors to the city and the many other cities claiming to be the Venice of the north, east, west or somewhere else.   

Venice's lagoon is protected from the open sea by a series of sandbanks. The city itself is built on 118 separate islands divided by 170 canals and linked by more than 400 bridges. Its fairy-tale appearance continues to enchant visitors from all over the world. The city is divided into two halves by the Grand Canal and further split into a watery maze with countless branches. The two halves are linked by a number of remarkable bridges, the most famous of them the Rialto Bridge, which is simultaneously a bridge and a shopping arcade. St Mark's Square, dedicated to the patron saint of Venice, can be the start or the finish of your exploration of this fascinating city.

Top 3 experiences in Venice

Venice for history lovers

Venice for history lovers

Follow in the footsteps of the first Venetians, who came here as refugees. Lose yourself in the maze of canals and travel through the Roman Empire to the time of the return of St Mark's mortal remains and the beginnings of Venice's existence as an influential state in its own right. Venice owed its ascent to trade, which is why Shakespeare placed his own merchant here.

Venice for lovers of exhibitions and festivals

Venice for lovers of exhibitions and festivals

Venice is home to a variety of cultural festivals and events. The Venice Art Biennale is the world's oldest and biggest exhibition of contemporary art. It alternates with the Architecture Biennale (in even years). Venice also hosts an annual Film Festival and many other festivals dedicated to theatre, dance, and so on.

Venice for carnival lovers

Venice for carnival lovers

The Venice Carnival occupies a special place in the history of vice and prohibition. The Venetians once wore masks all the time to conceal their vices and misdeeds, until the doge banned them and introduced draconian penalties for transgressors. Today the Venice Carnival is one of the biggest carnivals in Europe. It conserves a memory of the former debauchery and decadence while at the same time addressing our contemporary need for masks.

Stop at the Rialto and stroll over the bridge, lingering both on it and under it

Stop at the Rialto and stroll over the bridge, lingering both on it and under it

 

Wander at random through hidden streets and alleys and sit in a peaceful "campo" (square) over coffee or ice cream.

Wander at random through hidden streets and alleys and sit in a peaceful "campo" (square) over coffee or ice cream.

The Bridge of Sighs and the Doge's Palace

The Bridge of Sighs and the Doge's Palace

See the Doge's Palace (the residence of the leader and chief magistrate of the Venetian Republic) and the Bridge of Sighs

Murano

Visit the island of Murano and see the famous Murano glass being made 

Murano
Grand Canal

Grand Canal

Take an unforgettable water bus (vaporetto) ride down the Grand Canal from the railway station to St Mark's Square

When is the best time to visit Venice?

"Always!" those who love Venice would say. The fact is, though, that spring and autumn are the most suitable times for a visit. From April to June the weather is usually sunny without being too hot or oppressive. The second half of September can still be sultry but by October the weather is once again perfect for canalside wanderings. There are very few true Venetians left today, but here are a few hints and tips to avoid getting in their way. If you take the ferry across the Grand Canal, stand up even if the water is choppy.

Do your shopping at the Rialto market but buy fruit and vegetables from the barge moored alongside Campo San Barnaba. Try the wine in the one of the little wine shops or bacari away from the main streets. Venetians tend to dress quite formally and bathing costumes and low-cut dresses are not suitable for a visit to the city's churches. In the smarter hotels, men are expected to wear a jacket and tie. It can sometimes rain for several days in a row, so an umbrella is a good idea in spring and autumn. High tides (acqua alta) can occur in late autumn. On these occasions wooden duckboards are placed in St Mark's Square. If you are visiting in November or December, don't forget a pair of wellington boots or plastic bags to protect your shoes and legs up to the knees.

 

Venice 2

When travelling to Venice do not miss:

  • take an unforgettable water bus (vaporetto) ride down the Grand Canal from the railway station to St Mark's Square
  • stop at the Rialto and stroll over the bridge, lingering both on it and under it
  • see St Mark's Square and Basilica
  • see the Doge's Palace (the residence of the leader and chief magistrate of the Venetian Republic) and the Bridge of Sighs
  • visit the oldest Biennale in the Giardini, the Arsenale and other locations
  • take part in the famous Venice Carnival
  • visit the island of Murano and see the famous Murano glass being made
  • visit the Gallerie dell'Accademia and the Peggy Guggenheim Collection
  • visit the Teatro La Fenice to see an opera by Puccini or Verdi
  • visit the church of Santa Maria della Salute
  • wander at random through hidden streets and alleys and sit in a peaceful campo (square) over coffee or ice cream.