Help with Venice Itinerary

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Jan 30th, 2014, 03:39 AM
  #1
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Help with Venice Itinerary

So, I will be going in Venice in February (19-24/2/14) and I want to know if my Itinerary is feasible, and some recommendations if you have any. I need to tell you that the Venice Carnival dates are 15th February to 4th March so I will be there during the Carnival, and that means there will be a lot of tourists, hordes. And I also have to say I am a really into food, photography, and culture, but don't like tours. So here is my Itinerary:

~Day 1
I enter Venice at 7:00pm, go to my hotel leave my luggage and head to Cannaregio, strolling and then eat at "La Bottega ai Promessi ai Sposi" then return to the hotel.

~Day 2
In this day, I'm planning to explore the Dorsoduro area. Firstly I head to Ca' Rezzonico, then Galleria dell' Accademia then some cicchetti (tapas/meze) at "Cantinone Gia' Schiavi" then Peggy Guggenheim and then Santa Maria della Salute. Lunch at "Antica Locanda Montin".

~Day 3
In this day, I'm planning to explore the San Polo area. Firstly I head to Scuola Grande di San Rocco, then Frari Basilica which is next to the Scuola, then I head to the Rialto area and do some giro d'ombra (food walk) by eating some cicchetti in "All'Arco" then in "Do Mori" and then go to the Rialto Market. I cross the Rialto Bridge and eat some cicchetti in "La Vedova".

~Day 4
In this day, I'm planning to explore the Piazza San Marco and Western Castello. Firstly I head to Campanile di San Marco, then Basilica di San Marco, then Palazzo Ducale and then go to take a Gondola ride from Bacino Orseolo (Gondola Parking just behind Piazza San Marco) and tell the Gondolier to take me to San Giorgio dei Greci. See the Church and the Byzantine Greek Museum and then lunch at Corte Sconta. Finally I get to the Arsenale and then Museo Storico Navale.

~Day 5
This is the free day, for shopping etc. Leaving Venice in midday, and then back home to Athens.

Is this a feasible Itinerary, any recommendations?
PetrosB3 is offline  
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Jan 30th, 2014, 04:48 AM
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Well I don;t see any time in the outer islands.

I would not miss Torcello, which has a wonderful church with incredilbe byzantine mosaics, and would also consider Burano ir you can fit it in.
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Jan 30th, 2014, 05:00 AM
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@nytraveler Yes, I would love to go to Murano and Burano, and see the Torcello Cathedral with the gorgeous Byzantine Mosaics, but I have no time. If I just had one more day...
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Jan 30th, 2014, 05:29 AM
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Your plan seems reasonable and well researched. I suggest that you visit the Rialto market first thing in the morning as it is at its most spectacular then.
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Jan 30th, 2014, 07:09 AM
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@mamcalice Then I am going first in Rialto Market, and then do my Giro d'Ombra. I keep the Scuola Grande di San Rocco and the Frari Basilica first, as they are on my way to Rialto. Thanks!
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Jan 30th, 2014, 11:55 AM
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We once went to Venice during Carnevale. The crowds were unbelievable for scheduled events in Piazza San Marco, but it was amazing how easy it was to get away from the crowds. We actually went to the top of the Campanile during a big event, and there was no one in line ahead of us. They were all in the piazza. So, as long as you avoid scheduled events, I don't think you'll have problems with your plan. The atmosphere during Carnevale was very festive, but we didn't see any vandalism or other chaos. I hate crowds, but I enjoyed our time at the Carnevale immensely.
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Jan 31st, 2014, 05:10 AM
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@bvlenci Thats nice, I had a great fear on the crowds... I think the only good think in the Carnival is the great photos and I am content with that. But since you say that there are no big lines, I am quite greatful. Thanks!!
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Jan 31st, 2014, 07:12 AM
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The most beautiful church in Venice is Santa Maria dei Miracoli.

You have to pay to see the Marriage at Cana by Tintoretto in Santa Maria Salute.

Thin
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Jan 31st, 2014, 08:03 AM
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"I had a great fear on the crowds"

If you do, in fact, have a fear of crowds, however "great," then Venice during Carnevale will prove to be a challenge. The extremely dense crowds of Carnevale affect a fairly large land mass, from the Ponte della Paglia to the Accademia and/or Rialto Bridges. The wall-to-wall people are not limited to Piazza San Marco or "scheduled events." The gathering of people in costumes to be photographed in and around San Marco starts at sunrise and ends long past sunset. Every day. No set schedule. It just happens. Been there, done that. Five times.

"since you say that there are no big lines"

Beware of trusting only one voice on the internet, claiming just a single experience. I can promise you there will be plenty of unexpected lines in Venice during Carnevale. Be sure to plan your restroom visits with great care. The lines to cross the Rialto Bridge can take 30-40 minutes. The lines to board a simple vaporetto at the two San Marco docks can also take 30-40 minutes, and you may have to miss a boat or two before you get a chance to board. If the weather is particularly wintry, you could easily find yourself getting pelted by ice crystals in freezing cold wind gusts that eat umbrellas for a snack. Certain visitors need to be prepared for the potential challenges of visiting Venice during Carnevale.

On any day during Carnevale, you want to be very careful if your walking plans include stepping onto Fondamenta Goldoni, Calle Fabrii, Marzaria San Zulian, Merceria Orologio, and Calle Spadaria. These streets empty into Piazza San Marco on its northern edge. It is very easy to find yourself stuck in a single-person line for an hour in opposing directions with no ability to escape. I've witnessed one too many claustrophobia/anxiety attacks waiting for these lines to move. Not pretty.
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Jan 31st, 2014, 08:40 AM
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@Pepper_von_snoot Yes, I was considering a visit in Santa Maria dei Miracoli, and I will probably go as you recommend. I'm okay with paying in Santa Maria de la Salute to see the painting... Anyway I am going to that church mainly to see the Panagia Mesopanditissa icon which the Venetians took from Crete in order to save it from the Turks (Yes, I am Cretan obviously). Thanks for the information!
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Jan 31st, 2014, 08:50 AM
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@NYCFoodSnob I am not claustrophobic, what I want to say is that I don't like crowds, mainly because they ruin my photographs, there are no tables to eat in a restaurant I like, and the huge lines... What you say sounds a bit like a nightmare, the answer to escape from the crowds is the off the beaten track areas like Castello, thats what I am going to do then, I will focus to that kind of areas.
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Jan 31st, 2014, 09:42 AM
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It's easy enough to stay far from the maddening crowds, Petros. Just avoid the triangle that's formed between San Marco, Rialto and the Accademia Bridge. Also avoid the Lista di Spagna thoroughfare. You'll find plenty of peace and quiet.
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Jan 31st, 2014, 09:45 AM
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"I am not claustrophobic"

That's a relief. Someone who reads this thread might be. Or may have anxiety issues. I don't judge these conditions. I've seen perfectly healthy friends suffer without cause or reason. During one Carnevale, I witnessed a woman in her 30's on Calle Fabbri fall paralyzed by some kind of anxiety attack. She fell to the ground and refused to get up. She was finally moved into a restaurant (already packed with people) with the help of two waiters. It was quite a scene. When you witness something like that, you never forget it.

The two lines in the calle were not moving in either direction, and the people were stuffed too close for comfort. At least all the bodies clinging together made standing in the street a bit warmer. But I felt so sorry for the woman who couldn't handle the stifling situation.

"I don't like crowds, mainly because they ruin my photographs"

It's very difficult to get artful photographs of the costumed people without hundreds of tourists in your pictures. It can be done. There are methods. It helps if you have a website, a business card, a cell phone, and speak at least two languages.

"What you say sounds a bit like a nightmare"

I've witnessed quite a few nightmares during my Carnevale visits. I'm sure there are many I haven't personally seen. I'm always surprised you don't hear much on the internet about the tourists who struggle at Carnivale. Many Carnevale visitors do a bit of research. You'd think more of the nightmares would get mentioned. I suppose those who find the mayhem fun far outnumber anyone else.

The further you are away from the San Marco/Accademia/Rialto axis during Carnevale the better. In other neighborhoods, you wouldn't know the festival was taking place except for the one or two people in costume who just walked by.
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Jan 31st, 2014, 10:06 AM
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Petros, you sound like you have this well-planned out and I have no doubt you will have a good time, despite the crowds.

It really is mind over matter (or madding crowds, as it were)!

I also agree that you should get to the Rialto Market early (7-8am) to best see it before it gets too busy. Actually, the earlier you get out for everything, the better.

You obviously have information on when places open/close. That's important to know. Make sure you make reservations for meals at least 2 weeks before you get there. Especially since it is Carnivale.

Buon viaggio! I hope you will write up a trip report upon your return, as I'll be in Venice in April and am always interested in others' reports!
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Jan 31st, 2014, 11:46 AM
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@NYCFoodSnob To be honest, I haven't made a lot of research on the Carnevale, I wish I won't have a traumatic experience as most tourists did... Thanks for all the great informations you give me, I really appreciate it
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Jan 31st, 2014, 12:14 PM
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Petros--I think you have too many art museums on Day 2. I will say that we've had a few three-day visits to Venice and have never failed to go to Torcello (our favorite of the Islands). You may have time on the afternoon of Day 3, as I Frari and San Rocco are close together and seen fairly quickly.
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Jan 31st, 2014, 12:39 PM
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@sarge56 Well, I haven't done a lot of research on hours, but I will. Yes, I think the key to everything in a trip is begining early. I will try to make a Trip Report, I've never done one! Thanks!!!
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Jan 31st, 2014, 12:50 PM
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@dwdvagamundo Yes, I maybe exclude Ca' Rezzonico in day 2... I get a bit anxious with the Carnival madnesss so I will try to keep only the basic attractions. Yes its not a bad idea on going to Torcello in the afternoon, I was only thinking in the morning, but why not? I will consider it. Thanks!
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Jan 31st, 2014, 12:54 PM
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"I wish I won't have a traumatic experience as most tourists did"

Most tourists do not experience trauma. Perhaps English is not your first language.
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Jan 31st, 2014, 01:05 PM
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Yeah, I think the "back home to Athens" in his very first post here was a good clue as to what his first language might be. As well as his location shown in his profile. I'd say he's done pretty well here with ESL.
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