3-4 day trip from Venice

Jun 12th, 2004, 02:10 PM
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3-4 day trip from Venice

We're staying in Venice for all of December and I'm looking for suggestions for a 3-4 day sightseeing trip from Venice. At this stage we've no real preferences, so all suggestions welcome! We will have a car.
maryk is offline  
Jun 12th, 2004, 03:27 PM
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If you are an art lover, I can highly recommend Florence. Lucky you for getting to spend a month in Venezia!
Statia is offline  
Jun 12th, 2004, 03:33 PM
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Verona is close and convenient. Lots of lakes, etc. around for relaxation. One can see Verona churches, museums, Juliet's house/tomb, etc. in a couple of days. The surrounding countryside is beautiful. We stayed at Villa Genestra, a B&B last month and really enjoyed it.

Florence/Pisa are also good choices.
Mthomp77 is offline  
Jun 13th, 2004, 03:52 AM
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Starting in Venice, you then do Verona, then on to Cremona (lot's of fun in Cremona), your next stop is Parma (an itty bitty menace), then Mantua, then Padua, then you go back to Venice.
ira is offline  
Jun 13th, 2004, 04:54 AM
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Maryk - Or ... how about a few days in the Dolomites?

Steve_James is offline  
Jun 13th, 2004, 08:06 AM
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Another vote for the Dolomites...Val de Gardena.......Uhrerhof Deur!!
Bailey is offline  
Jun 13th, 2004, 08:37 AM
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If you're interested in architecture, try Vicenza and a tour of the Palladian villas in the Veneto. The famous Villa Rotonda is in Vicenza (and do go next door to the Villa Valmarana ai Nani for wonderful Tiepolo frescoes), as are numerous other buildings by Palladio: the Palazzo della Ragione, the Teatro Olimpico, etc. The Villa Barbaro, with fantastic frescoes by Veronese, is near Asolo, which, I am told, is a lovely little town.

The only problem might be that some of the private villas (most of them are still in private hands...) might not be open to visitors in December.

According to a visitors' guide to Venice (April 2003), there is an "Istituto regionale per le ville venete" at (tel.) 0415235606. It might be the office I went to in 1993 or so that is located on the second floor of a building on the left side of the Piazza San Marco (if you are looking at it from in front of the Basilica of San Marco). They had a list of all the villas and their opening hours.
Eloise is offline  
Jun 13th, 2004, 09:36 AM
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Lake Como is incredible!
JRM is offline  
Jun 13th, 2004, 11:04 PM
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Thanks for the suggestions. If we were to head to the Dolomites, where would you suggest?
maryk is offline  
Jun 14th, 2004, 04:35 AM
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If you're planning on touring, I'd recommend CORVARA. It's pretty much ideal as a base as it's so central - and in a wonderful setting.

Alternatively I'd suggest ORTISEI, which makes an excellent base for the Val Gardena and its lifts - again with lovely scenery.

Other options would be Cortina, San Cassiano, Castelrotto ... to name a few.

Hope this helps ...

Steve_James is offline  
Jun 14th, 2004, 04:40 AM
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You could venture East and check out Slovenia. Ljubljana is an easy 2 hours away. Lkae Bled, Lake Bohinj and the Soca River Valley are beautiful.

SloJan is offline  
Jun 14th, 2004, 05:00 AM
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And I saw a post not too long ago extolling the beauties of Trieste. Stop there first on your way to the Slovenian sites suggested by SloJan. I would also give serious consideration to the trip to see Palladian villas suggested by Eloise who provided some really useful info about how to get info on opening times, etc. Thanks Eloise. I've always wanted to do that sidetrip. Someday I will.
JulieVikmanis is offline  
Jun 16th, 2004, 12:59 PM
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Thanks so much for all the suggestions. I think we'll either go with Eloise's suggestions - if enough of the villas are available, or the Dolomites.
By the way, the Istituto regionale per le ville venete has a web site - but no information about opeing hours or specific villas (that I could find). I'll give them a call and hope someone speaks English!
maryk is offline  
Jun 16th, 2004, 03:53 PM
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Hello, Maryk,

I feel I should do the very best I can for anyone who is interested in visiting the Palladian villas, so here is what I have been able to find.

Yes, the Istituto regionale per le ville venete is the place where I got my more than somewhat yellowed list, which I have since managed to dig up - I've always meant to file my Italian information but have never gotten around to doing it - of villas in the Veneto. There are, according to this old list, 148 of them but, evidently, not all of them are by Palladio. The address, telephone number, and fax number for the Istituto are the same as on my list.

And no, the Web site does not have the information about visiting hours, etc., on line. "Informazioni turistiche" are, as Web sites so often and so frustratingly say, "under construction." But you can always hope that they have a "hard copy" of the information that they can send to you - or that you can pick up in Venice.

Most of the Palladian buildings in Vicenza are likely to be open year round. The address for the local tourist office in Vicenza is

Uffici Informazioni I.A.T.
Piazza Matteotti, 12 - 36100 VICENZA
Tel. 0444/320854 - fax: 0444/327072
E-Mail: [email protected]
You can try to send them an E-mail asking them to send you information about the opening hours of the buildings and villas in and near Vicenza. The Villa Rotonda and even the surrounding park are, I'm afraid, unlikely to be open in the winter. But my list says that the Villa Valmarana ai Nani (which is not by Palladio) will receive "preannounced" visits. You can try to call. When I was there, parts of the villa and the "guest house" with the Giandomenico Tiepolo frescoes were open but some of the frescoes (by Giambattista Tiepolo) that I had hoped to see were not open to the public; I expressed my regret to the young man at the door, he went to ask Count Valmarana, who then came out and took me into the private parts of the villa. He was quite old in 1993 or so; I don't know whether he would still be alive...

In case you're interested in reading up on the Palladian villas before you visit them (I hope you can and do!), pick up a copy (it's out in paper) of Witold Rybczynski's "The Perfect House: A Journey with the Renaissance Master Andrea Palladio." In all fairness, I have to add that some people find the book extremely frustrating, because there are relatively few images and plans in it. But it has a wonderful personal tone that makes Palladio and his villas not at all forbidding and almost lovable. And there are umpteen books of photographs of Palladio's villas, so you can do as I did: borrow one or two books of photographs from the library and when Rybczynski refers to something that he provides no image of, look for it in the illustrated volumes.

For a less personal view, THE authority on Palladio is James Ackerman, the dean of architectural history in the United States (and a wonderful old gentleman whom I've had the pleasure of meeting). His book on Palladio is also out in paper. Finally, there is a book (also in paper) called "The Palladio Guide" by Caroline Constant that the owner of the B&B where I stayed in Vicenza recommended warmly; she had met Ms. Constant; I have not and I have only glanced through her book, which seems quite solid.

I know I have gone on at great length, but to my mind the Palladian villas are among the most harmonious and most humanistic achievements of the Italian Renaissance. And where they are complemented by the works of an artist like Paolo Veronese (at the Villa Barbaro), they are totally unique and quite sublime.

I do so very much hope that you will want to and will be able to visit them!
Eloise is offline  
Jun 16th, 2004, 05:41 PM
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Dear Eloise, thank you so much for your fantastic information. I'm particularly keen to visit the villas (wanted to go last time we were in Venice - but ran out of time), so even if we don't spend the entire 3 or so days in and around Vicenza, I'll probably do a seperate day trip from Venice. We'll be in Venice for 10 days before we do this trip, so I'll call in at the Istituto and find out what I can get to see.
maryk is offline  
Jun 19th, 2004, 01:07 PM
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Thought that the Palladian Villa lovers might enjoy this site that I found www.cisapalladio.org/web/venetoe.htm
It seems to have a great amount of information - including opening times and some links to individual web sites.
maryk is offline  

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