Hey friends! It feels so good to be writing another adventure post! It’s particularly fun to be writing about one of my favorite places, Venice! It’s full of culture, colors, art, and, tiramisu, which is, pretty much Heaven for me. I normally advocate spending a significant amount of time in one place while traveling, as I am not a huge fan of quick visits but unfortunately that’s sometimes a reality. I was able to explore Venice for about 48 hours so. If you’re going to only spend a weekend somewhere, Venice is well suited for this as well. Happy reading!
Ask the concierge at your hotel for a restaurant recommendation! They are incredibly well connected and know the best places to eat as well as prices. My family and I asked for suggestions pretty much every time we ate somewhere and no one led us astray. (Plus sometimes they give you free food or drinks if they know who recommended them. Free is always a score in my book!)
If you have time, walk around the city at night. Piazza San Marcos, or St. Mark’s Square, is gorgeous as night as are most the canals. The city is also a bit quieter so you can take your time exploring.
I’d recommend touring Saint Mark’s Basilica first thing. Even in the winter, it’s very busy so definitely try to go during a slower part of the day. The Basilica is basically an ornate church. The walls and ceiling are covered with incredible paintings, tapestries, and artwork. I really cannot explain how extravagant it is so you’ll just have to see for yourself! It’s located in St. Mark’s square, which, as I mentioned earlier, is great to explore.
The Doge’s Palace is right next-door and is quiet extensive. Plan on wandering around for at least an hour unless you skip something. This mansion contains what was once the courts, legislative rooms, a home, a jail, and a bounty of historical artwork. The largest painting in Europe is actually in this building as well. The walls are made of stone and it stays cool so if you’re visiting in the summer, this might be a welcome relief from the heat. Either way, expect to be awed.
Next, it’s time to get lost. That’s right start wandering through the streets. You’ll find plenty of stores to shop if you like and beautiful bridges. I used this time to capture as much as the city as possible. When your feet get tired pop in for pizza somewhere. There are lots of small shops that smell incredible so it’s hard to go wrong. If you’re a coffee lover like me, finish up your meal with a cappuccino. It’ll keep you fueled for the rest of the day and you can’t beat Italian coffee!
Start your afternoon of with a change of pace! After looking at lots of romantic, ancient, and renaissance art it’s time for some modern and contemporary pieces. The famous Peggy Guggenheim Collection is located on the waterfront of Venice. Once upon a time, Peggy lived in this palace surrounded by her works of art. Peggy was a curator, gallery owner, and artist advocate. She sparked the start of modern art in the U.S. actually, which is just crazy. Her Venice home is now a museum with rooms full of Picasso’s, Pollack’s, and many many more artists. I highly suggest watching, “Peggy Gugenheim: An Art Addict,” before you go so you can fully appreciate it. (It’s a documentary and is very well done.)
End your evening by taking your concierge’s suggestion for a fabulous restaurant. Again, it’s hard to go wrong when everything is delicious! If you’re feeling adventurous try ordering cuttlefish. I had cuttlefish pasta, which comes out completely black. It was definitely a different experience but tasty and a Venice specific food. Eat some tiramisu and gelato for me too!
You’re probably a little tired right? It’s a lot of walking but I’m sure you’re in love with Venice by this point. My family and I used our Sunday morning to tour a glass blowing factory actually. Our hotel offered a complementary water taxi to a factory they recommended. I highly suggest avoiding this tourist trap. The factory was cool but it ended up being a sales pitch. Essentially, the hotels work out a mutually beneficial relationship with a factory and send you there.
Instead of that, take a bus and tour one of the islands on your own. I heard a lot of stories about the Murano island and how beautiful it is. They have colorfully painted houses and glass blowing stores you can go see. You can walk around, take pictures, purchase souvenirs, and just take in a different side of Venice!
When you return, it’s up to you how you spend the rest of your Sunday! We sat on a patio and enjoyed coffees and snacks. Whatever you do, let yourself do it at a leisurely pace. It’s easy to get caught in the mindset of seeing absolutely everything. There’s no way you can do that in 48 hours however so instead of running around, take your time and enjoy what you do see of the city.
Ready to book a flight to Venice?? Me too! I’m wishing I was back there right now. Send me pictures if you go! I’d love to relive that beautiful place again! 🙂