Irrespective of anyone’s age, gender, choice or will, it remains one of the obvious choice for all. It’s a place to be visited by everyone at least once in lifetime. That’s how Venice is! And when we were at such an ‘obvious’ place, there were certain obvious things, which we did. They goes like (chronologically):
∗ Stay in old town (and with local): This had to be the first thing. The time when we explored about Venice on internet, we made up our minds to stay within the old town and with some local family. We were able to found one via Airbnb and by far, it turned to be one of the great experience we had. We learned a lot about Venice, the locals & their hospitality. Also had a chance to eat home made pasta with a traditional Italian pork dish – deliziso (Italian word for delicious)!
∗ Winding streets: When we speak about the old town, then we are talking about the small, narrow, cobble stoned & zig-zag streets. Getting lost in Venice streets is pretty normal and some times one may have a deja-vu feel as well. We experienced this at least 3-4 times during out stay, when we took the wrong street and ended up thinking we were on this bridge couple of minutes back (but we were not!).
Only advice: Don’t be afraid of getting lost, as you WILL get lost 🙂
∗ St. Mark’s Square/San Marco piazza: It’s the well known & most famous piazza in Venice, which is always filled with tourists & pigeons. The best time to visit is early in the morning or in the evening, when most of the crowd have disappeared. Our apartment was only 5-7 minutes away from the piazza, becuase of which we ended up here multiple times and during different times of the day.
The famous sights – St. Mark’s Basilica & Doge’s Palace are located here. Both of them are worth a visit. The inside of Doge’s palace is remarkable. We took one of the tours, which took us across the Bridge of Sighs to the nearby prison cells, one of which once housed famous Cassanova!
∗ Stroll sea side: It was one of the things we really loved while we were in Venice. Especially the evening sea breeze is refreshing and great to see Venetian daily life happening from some distance 🙂
∗ Gondola Ride: The next obvious thing to do in Venice, is a Gondola ride. No trip to Venice is complete without this. A tourist trap, but everyone falls for it willingly 🙂 There are lot of spots from where one can take this ride. We took the same in front of San Marco. Good things comes with a price tag. The typical price (in April ’13) for 40 minutes was 80€ for 2 persons. It’s one of the experience which we can/will never forget.
Click here to get all information about gondola ride.
∗ Brek’s fast-food: Definitely recommended – Brek has chain of fast-food restaurants, all around Venice and serve delicious sandwiches and other stuffs. We ate from them countless times!
TIP: Eating in the restaurant is usually expensive in Venice.
∗ Venezia Santa Lucia: The open space in front of central station is a very nice place to hangout or spent some quality time, if the weather permits. Do a bit of people watching, along with all the passing by boats and the expensive private boats. Brek has one of the branch close to station (around 200 meters) – definite combo! Get the stuff and spend the time here. Yes, we did it 😀
∗ Burano & Murano trip: These two small islands definitely have to be on someone’s list while visiting Venice. Murano is famous for glass making and Burano is known for it’s lacework & brightly coloured houses. We first went to Murano (on a boat from Venice), took part in a glass making workshop in the factory and then continued to Burano.
∗ Grand Canal Ride: We did this every day. Hop on a public water bus and admire Venice’s beauty from the water! Much better than gondola, seen from budget perspective :P. The view of city from the sea is completely different and getting a feel of it with the locals is really superb.
The first night we had the dinner in one of the restaurants in San Marco – was bit pricey and not that much tasty (a tourist trap), the second night in Hard Rock Cafe and the third night with our host. Actually, Venice was the place from where our Hard Rock journey started 🙂