Beautiful Venice! This was our second stop during our 3 Week Trip To Europe. You may be asking, is two days in Venice enough? The answer to that is, Yes! We arrived here determined to discover the most authentic Venice we could, in only two days. And that’s exactly what we did.
Now, when booking your train to get to Venice, make sure that you purchase it for the right stop. There are two train stations in Venice. The first one on the main land (Venice Mestre) and the other is on the island (Santa Lucia). If you are staying on the island, or want to visit, the second one is the one you should book it for.
Once you arrive at the train station, you are at the Grand Canal. I have to say, finally seeing the dream-like canals of Venice was a dream come true. There are tons of taxi boat options that can take you close to your stop, or you could walk. However, if you have heavy bags, this may not be the best options. We were that group with the big bags, but thankfully our hotel was right next to the stop and we didn’t have to walk much.
We arrived at the hotel very early, so we left our bags there and went out to explore the island. Google maps was our best friend during our stay. So make sure you have a phone carrier that will allow you to have unlimited internet connection. But don’t be afraid to get lost here. Just grab a gelato when you do and find a place where you can restore your connection and route.
So like I mentioned earlier, we arrived pretty early to Venice from Paris, which allowed us to start our exploring time the same day. We walked around looking for some lunch, so we stopped for a quick pizza. Right across the street we found some gelato. Don’t worry about looking up the best spots, at least we didn’t, because you will find Pizza and Gelato everywhere.
We chose to leave this as a free day to just explore, so we walked around the allies. Some of them may lead to a dead-end, the canal, or some pretty nice boutiques. Take this time to purchase any souvenirs.
Our first day in Venice was actually my dad’s birthday, so we decided to go back to the hotel to change for a nice dinner. We had an amazing dinner at Trattoria Bar Pontini. The food was delicious, of course. After this, you could walk around to find local bars for some tapas and wine.
On our second day, it was go time. We woke up ready to walk and explore. We started our morning with breakfast at the hotel. Most restaurants do not offer breakfast, so we were thankful that our hotel included it.
Our first stop for the day was the Basilica Dei Frari. There was a service going on at the time, therefore we couldn’t walk in.
We continued walking and found ourselves at the Ponte dell’ Accademia. The views from here were breathtaking. Take your time walking around and enjoy the free galleries and boutiques.
Then our route took us to the Piazza San Marco. This is the main square in Venice. The area is extremely crowded during the summer, but it was perfect for the time we visited. This place is magical though. Here you will find live bands and tons of restaurants. As for the Basilica, it is free to go in but you may find a long line during peak season. Again, since we went in November, there wasn’t a long line for us. You will need to be dressed appropriately to be able to walk in. Pictures are not allowed inside. At the Piazza, we decided to sit down and eat our quick lunch that we had prepared earlier.
After walking to the Rialto Bridge, we decided to take a Gondola ride. The prices area bit expensive, but how can you go to Venice and not get on a Gondola? Tons of people opt to not do it and decide to take a taxi boat which also takes you around the whole island. But again, how can you not get on a Gondola? lol.
Once we got back to the Bridge, we decided to just continue getting lost walking through the galleries and stores. We waited until it was dinner time and headed to Rossopomodoro. This is said to be one of the best Pizzas of Venice. Needless to say, it was delicious. We then headed back to our hotel to prepare our bags because we had an early train to Rome.
Watch this video of my trip, it includes a few more clips from the visit.
What you should know about your visit to Venice:
Tip # 1: Visit during slow season. We were able to enjoy a lot because we didn’t have to wait in long lines to go into these places. We visited in November, which was a bit colder than expected, but I hear that late September/October, or late March/April are great times to visit as well, less traffic and good weather. Also, keep in mind that things may cost you more when you go during summer time.
Tip # 2: Do not squeeze too many things in. Venice is a great place to get lost in, walking around through the alleys and enjoying the views.
Tip # 3: Prepare snacks. We bought tons of coffee and hot chocolate during our walks because it was super cold, but they were so delicious that we didn’t mind the extra expenses. However, do prepare some snacks and water for when you are out. This will save you tons because it will help you avoid buying something to eat in every corner. Do enjoy the local food, of course. We tried to always get a hotel that included breakfast, and prepared something for lunch, so that all we had to really sit down for was dinner. We also waited to ask the locals what they recommended for us to eat, instead of looking for restaurants online.
Tip # 4: Like I mentioned at the beginning, look for a place to stay that is close to the train station. Get familiar with the map of the area you’ll be staying in and places you’ll be visiting.
Tip # 5: It is also recommended that you contact your Bank before leaving, to let them know that you will be making purchases in a different country so that they don’t block your card. Also, ask if they charge you for using your card, if they have any fees, to see if its more convenient to only use cash. You should still carry a certain amount in cash.
Tip # 6: Try to purchase your tickets early, and when I say early, I really mean early. We bought our plane tickets almost a year ahead of time, and the train tickets we purchased months in advanced. Trust me, this will help you save A LOT.
Tip # 7: The TripAdvisor app was a big help before and during our trip. In finding where to stay, where to eat, and even the places to visit. Also, we purchased a lot of the things we needed for our trip, like our Travel Power Adapter, through Amazon.
Tip # 8: Lastly, be aware of pickpockets, or people asking you to sign anything, to look at something. Keep your bags tight while walking or taking the train or escalators.
There is always more to see, so just do some more research and see what else you would be interested in. But take your time to enjoy Venice. Since we went during fall/winter time, it was a bit cold and foggy. However, the views were still breathtaking. If you go when it is a little warmer, you will be able to enjoy the beautiful colors on the buildings.
I’m not sure if it is necessary to even add that by the end of our visit we had fallen in love with this historic city. From the beautiful canals, the warm locals and incredible food, everything was amazing. It was a short stay, but it was great. Venice was actually one of my favorite destinations on the trip.
Well, I hope that this itinerary and tips for Venice help you during your next visit. And if you do follow it, or take any tips from here, please write me. I want to know how it went for you. Don’t forget to read my Europe Trip post to read more about my whole trip and the other places we visited in Europe. Who knows, maybe you follow our same 3 week route.
So get ready for lots and lots of walking, going up and down a few stairs for the bridges, tons of gelato, pizza, and of course, amazing views.
Here are the recommended Itineraries for my trip: