Best area in Venice

Feb 26th, 2006, 07:45 PM
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Join Date: Jan 2006
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Best area in Venice


First of I would like to say that I can not imagine planning a trip to Italy without this message board! All of you who post on this site are gems!

As our June trip planning continues, I am having trouble deciding which area of Venice would be the best to stay in. We are choosing between 1.) San Marco, 2.) near Rialto Bridge, or 3.) Dorsoduro. We don't mind the crowds and would enjoy an area with a good night life. I would also like an area with plenty of restaurants to choose from and a great atmosphere. Which of these three would best match what I am looking for? Many of the hotels recommended on this site are already booked (Locanda Orseolo, La Calcina) We currently have a reservation at the Rialto Hotel, but I am not confident with this decision and am reviewing my options! Your feedback is much appreciated.
devine_girl is offline  
Feb 26th, 2006, 08:35 PM
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Depends on what you mean by "great atmosphere." Most people who choose the Dorsoduro are looking for a bit of quiet, because they find that romantic. But if you want late nights and revelry, your more likely to find it around San Marco or Rialto.

There are plenty of restaurants in Venice in every sestre and please understand that Venice is actually a rather small place and is completely safe at night. So if you stay at the Rialto Hotel and find a bar or club that you like in San Marco, you can very easily get to it.

I would base your hotel choice on its having a good reputation. Check out tripadvisor.
nessundorma is offline  
Feb 26th, 2006, 09:08 PM
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We like the relative tranquility of Dorsoduro esp near San barnabas. Luckily the city is small that wherver one stays it is easy to reach other parts

AndrewDavid is offline  
Feb 26th, 2006, 10:22 PM
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We have stayed at the Hotel Rialto and enjoyed our stay. It is an excellent location right on the Grand Canal and right next to the Rialto Bridge with a Gondola station at the front door. What could be more Venice than that? There is always plenty of action at the Rialto with many, many restaurants including the famous Trattoria alla Madonna. The Rialto Market is across the bridge and Pz. S Marco a five minute walk. You should love it.
DownUnder is offline  
Feb 27th, 2006, 03:15 AM
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First of all, forget about good night life in Venice! Not that it's not good enough - there's literally NONE. Venice is a small, quiet town; at 10 p.m. (very unusual for Italy!!), almost everything is closed. Perfect for a romantic night stroll (as nessundorma already said, Venice is absolutely safe, and you could carry 1 million dollars cash in your pocket without needing to fear anything). But no night life, I repeat.
The only possibility to enjoy SOME sort of night life are the three famous cafés on St. Mark's square (Florian, Lavena, Quadri) with their bands giving their open air concerts every night till 11 p.m. or so; and the bars of the big hotels - very, very expensive, of course, but there are three excellent choices that don't make you feel in an impersonal "international" setting but really in Venice: the respective bars of the Danieli; the Europa & Regina; and, above all, by far the best (and most expensive) of them, the Gritti bar. If you want to just stroll home after sipping your last cognac at one of those bars, or after listening to the band serenades in St. Mark's square, that would be a point for an accomodation in San Marco.
Dorsoduro, it's already been said, is the quiet, romantic part of the town with not the slightest hint of night life.
As for the Rialto, night life zero. Other than that, it depends on which side of the bridge the accomodation is to be found. I don't like the S. Marco side very much, that's a rather grey and not too friendly part of Venice. The San Polo side is of course great - some of Venice's most interesting architecture here, speaking not of monuments, but of the town itself, and colourful life in the morning, when the markets in that neighbourhood are open. But, I repeat: no night life - even less than in other parts of the town, as the markets are closing in the early afternoon, and for the rest of the day, the quarter is dead.
franco is offline  
Feb 27th, 2006, 03:30 AM
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It's true that Venice is not a big party town with bars and dance clubs galore open to the wee hours of the morning.

But it's not true that there is no nightlife at all. It just takes some finding. Fortunately, just go to Fodor's destinations and look under Venice--you'll find several places listed that are open past 10 pm.
RufusTFirefly is offline  
Feb 27th, 2006, 03:44 AM
Join Date: Mar 2003
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... area with a good nightlife..., area with plenty of restaurants and a great atmosphere...

forget about the nightlife... there is nothing "hype", no saturday night fever, no fashion restaurants or bars or dancings.

venice is a place where people go for quiet, romance, evening strolls,...
one of the factors that attracts people to venice is the quietness, no noise, occasionnal humming of a motorboat,... you listen to the footsteps approaching,..., fading away... there is no vegas strip, no shopping malls,... nothing like that...
it is a place to get lost in.

the question of the area is IMO not that important. if peace and quiet is important, then go to dorsoduro or some parts of cannaregio.

finding a good restaurant is a difficult task in venice. search for 'venice restaurants' on this board and follow the recommendations. these restaurants are allover town and you'll find them while you are walking and discovering during daytime.
baldrick is offline  
Feb 27th, 2006, 07:42 PM
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I've stayed in San Marco, Cannaregio and Dorsoduro and they all had good points (I mean it's Venice, you can't really go wrong).

Did find a blues club with a British blues band on a trip a few years ago; don't have the name but it serves as proof that there is SOME nightlife in Venice!
annabelle2 is offline  
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