Doge's Secret Tour in Venice

Jun 13th, 2006, 07:31 PM
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Doge's Secret Tour in Venice

We are leaving for our trip in 4 days. Yay! I am trying to figure out if we should get an Orange Venice card and if so, do we buy the Secret Itineraries part separately for the Doge's palace. We figured we would get the Venice Card because we really have not got any particular plans other than wandering and "getting lost" in Venice. We love to walk around and explore together. I have really tried to research this online, but it is kind of unclear to me. We get to Venice on Saturday early afternoon and leave on Monday mid-morning. I know this is not long, but it the trip is tacked on to the end of business for my husband and we will want to get home to our kiddos. The bonus of the work part is I get to go to Italy for 10 days for practically nothing. Anyway, could anyone advise me of which way to go about securing the tour without essentially double paying. From what I can tell on-line we can tour on Sunday, but is this not really the case? Are things going to be open on Sunday afternoon? Thank you for all your posts and help on-line. I have been able to do so much planning because of it.
tnantx is offline  
Jun 13th, 2006, 07:48 PM
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I don't really see how you will get the value out of the orange card with such a short visit. If you have your heart set on the Doge secret Itineraries tour, reserve it NOW. I got there and tried to reserve for a Saturday on Thursday and could not get anything for Thursday through Sunday. We were even willing to postpone our departure on Sunday, but nothing available. So get it in advance.
Vera is offline  
Jun 13th, 2006, 08:24 PM
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You have less than 2 days? Rick Steves mentions that the Venice card (either one) is not worth the bother; if you aren't there for 3 days, it is even less of the bother.

The secret iteneraries are separate. I had my hotel do the reservation for me (for the English tour.)

If you need to buy a vaporetto pass, try to arrange the itinieraries so you can get away with one day pass.

You might consider pay as you go for museums since you are there for such a short time. The only place that get you in fast with a pass is Doge's palace, which you don't need if you get in on the secret itinieraries. All other museums covered by the pass were breeze to get in.

I had a funny experience with the Basilica San Marco; I did the online reservation plus Rick Steve's backpack trick. But alas, the gate keeper knew nothing about either short cuts -- unfazed, I slipped in between Spanish and Chinese tour groups and entered the Basilica with no waiting. The waiting line extended almost to the S. Mark column.
greg is offline  
Jun 14th, 2006, 04:02 AM
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Hi tn,

Secret Itineraries tour of Doge’s palace Phone number is 011 39 041 520 9070. English-speaking operator.

You will not be charged for your tickets if you don't go on the tour.

ira is offline  
Jun 14th, 2006, 04:08 AM
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The ticket for the Secret Itineraries tour includes your admission to the palace. If you also buy a Venice card, you are double-paying for that site.
Nikki is online now  
Jul 7th, 2006, 02:11 PM
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What exactly is the Rick Steve's backpack trick?
cknez is offline  
Jul 7th, 2006, 02:22 PM
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annetti is offline  
Jul 8th, 2006, 10:27 AM
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I just got back from Venice, and I took the Secret Itineraries tour. It is interesting, but not my favorite part of Venice by any means. I loved the wandering and getting lost part...and absolutely loved visiting Burano (and Murano. I would have been just as happy seeing the outside of the Doges Palace and St Marks Basilica, and being in San Marco square, which are absolutely beautiful, but if I had such a short time in Venice I am not sure I would make the doges palace secret itineraries tour such a priority.

That said, it was great to have reservations at both the Doges Palace and St. Marks, and walk right in bypassing the lines, so if you do decide to go to either definitely reserve them.
ronnie56 is offline  
Jul 8th, 2006, 10:46 AM
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Here is a response I posted to another inquiry, but would like to mention it here:

We enjoyed the Secret Itineraries tour very much----very interesting and educational. BUT, I want to throw something in here that I think people should know ahead of time.

If you have any tendency toward claustrophobia, think twice about taking this tour. You are crowded into very narrow stairwells with people above and below you, and no where to go once you are in there.

Someone mentioned not being able to leave the group to go to the restroom, and that is correct. But, beyond that, you are in rooms with very low ceilings and there is nowhere to sit down should you need to do so. You are also literally walking on the rafters in the top of the Doge's Palace, which could unnerve some people.

Like I said, we loved the tour and it was highlight for us. But while on it, I was thinking that people should know what is in store so they can determine whether it is for them.
chicgeek is offline  
Jul 8th, 2006, 01:23 PM
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Thank you, chicgeek. You pointed out some info that I found helpful in making a decision whether or not to take the tour. I don't relish being squeezed in with no place to move and no place to sit. Thanks for the info.
annetti is offline  
Jul 8th, 2006, 01:36 PM
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You're welcome. Some people might think I am being negative, but I think everyone should know up front what it involves. Not everyone would be up for it.
chicgeek is offline  
Sep 27th, 2007, 10:09 AM
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We have reservations for this tour. Does anyone else have input? We are only in Venice two days, and I don't know if it will be worth our time.
RNSuzanne is offline  
Sep 27th, 2007, 01:28 PM
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I guess that is why they make both vanilla and chocolate. I didn't really care for Murano and Burano, but absolutely loved the Secret Itineraries tour. That being said, if I only had 2 days for Venice, I wouldn't do either. Spend time walking all around Venice, especially away from San Marco and the Rialto. Go over to Dorsoduro and wander around Campo San Barnaba and Campo Santa Margherita and then down to the Zattere, find one nice restaurant at least for one great meal.
DinPa is offline  
Sep 27th, 2007, 01:34 PM
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My first trip to Venice was also a 2 day whirlwind with a group. I knew I wasn't seeing everything and the real true Venice, so I vowed to go back. Two years later, we went on our own and spent 5 nights, which I could have used 2 more. I love Venice and will get back even again. Enjoy, wander and don't worry about seeing it all because 2 days will only make you want to come back.
DinPa is offline  
Sep 27th, 2007, 05:55 PM
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DinPa: Since you mentioned walking around Venice, may I ask you how long does it take to walk from the Ca D'Oro area in Cannareggio to San Marco? We are brisk walkers. Thanks!
tog is offline  
Sep 27th, 2007, 08:39 PM
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Brisk walkers, point to point, not window shopping, but with a mission to get there, I'd say no more than 15 minutes, mayble less depending on the crowds.
DinPa is offline  
Sep 27th, 2007, 09:19 PM
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Loved the Secret Itineraries tour; loved Venice! Rarely took a boat anywhere, 'cause the city is so walkable. I echo other comments--get away from San Marco (but don't avoid it entirely--San Marco at sundown is absolutely stunning, and one could spend a week in the basilica itself. Truly)--and try to find those rare spots where the locals relax just a little and be themselves. Fill your water bottles w/ wine at the shops, eat cicchetti (small plates) at wine bars in the early evening, stroll the piazzas at night, and revel in the silence that can only be had in a city without cars. You can tell I loved the city, but that only came on day three, really. The first few hours were intensely disappointing to me, so if you don't absolutely love it, take heart--you might. In time.
Saxon is offline  
Sep 30th, 2007, 07:34 PM
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DinPa: thanks for the response on walking distance in Venice. We are soon leaving for our first Italy trip and are so excited we can't even stand it!! Tog
tog is offline  
Oct 1st, 2007, 07:29 AM
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Secret Itineraries - absolutely waisting of time
euro12345 is offline  
Oct 1st, 2007, 08:41 AM
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Why?? Please give your reasons!
DinPa is offline  

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