An April 2003 trip
to Venice by raycarstairs
Quote: There's no getting away from it - Venice is a real treat and culturally has so much to offer the discerning traveler. However, be prepared because a few days could do some serious damage to your wallet, albeit a price worth paying!
However, to do Venice justice you really need three to four days minimum to get a feel for the city and Venetian lifestyle which is as much a part of visiting the city as seeing the historic sites.
Exploring is the name of the game as you will get frequently lost amongst the myriad streets and canals which scatter the city.
The vaporetti are also a good way to get a tour of the islands if you're on a budget and can't afford the over-nflated gondola trips, which might set you back about 70 euros for one hour!!
Otherwise, you should be prepared to walk - it's very easy to get lost and it takes a couple of days to get your bearings. During your wanderings, you'll notice some yellow signs which direct you along the main pedestrian routes. Try to keep within touching distance of these to begin with and you won't go far wrong.
This tiny hotel lies in the Dorsoduro district, a pretty Bohemian neighbourhood of narrow canals and quality restaurants. The location is quiet, just of the Grand Canal, nestled in behind the majestic S. Maria della Salute.
Despite a review I read by another member, I found the staff to be courteous, helpful and very accommodating. The hotel itself has an attractive canalside location. Like all Venice island hotels, prices are extremely inflated as everything, including sewage, has to be transported in and out by boat. My room was small, very clean but with no TV or fancy trimmings . . . and a shared toilet . . . for €80 per night. This might seem like a lot for a single room, but by Venetian standards this is cheap!!
The hotel offers a left luggage facility which is handy if you have a late flight. Book online at .
Member Rating 2 out of 5 on June 3, 2003
Hotel Alla Salute da Cici
Fondamenta Ca Bala
041 523 5404
Attraction | "Palazzo Ducale"
Initially, I was a little put off at the prospect of spending a couple of hours exploring a stuffy museum on a sunny day. However, it really is worth taking the time to visit as it's one of the most unique buildings of it's type in Europe . . . and beyond.
There are tours but I would recommend arming yourself with a copy of a good guide book and following the route as signposted. The Rough Guide to Venice has an adequate section with enough detail to keep you informed without boring you to tears.
On your tour, the highlights include the Bridge of Sighs, Sala del Maggior Consiglio - the largest room in Europe - and the numerous artworks which embellish the walls.
The entrance fee of approx 10€ may seem on the pricey side but it's worth every penny.
Member Rating 4 out of 5 on June 4, 2003
Doge's Palace/Palazzo Ducale
Piazza San Marco
Venice, Italy 30124
Attraction | "Basilica di San Marco"
If your hotel is on Venice island, try to get round to San Marco around 8am when the square is empty. The first crowds start to arrive around 9 - 9:30am and the hustle and bustle can detract a little from the main prize.
Whatever your religious persuasion, it's worth spending an hour or so in St Mark's. If you don't have time, make sure you have a good wander around outside. The Basilica's architecture is very interesting if a little confusing. It's intriuge lies in the various additions and whims of successive architects and doges over the centuries.
If you want to get an arial perspective of the Basilica, trek (or take the lift) up the bell tower
Member Rating 5 out of 5 on June 5, 2003
Saint Mark's Basilica
Piazza San Marco
Venice, Italy 30124