must see- things to do in venice

Sep 22nd, 2004, 12:59 PM
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must see- things to do in venice

Hi there , myself and my boyfriend are going to venice next week- we have no clue as to what to do in venice bar a gondola trip- any tips also any good reasonable restaurants-
rady is offline  
Sep 22nd, 2004, 01:05 PM
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Why did you plan a trip to Venice if you have no clue what to do there? If you're leaving next week, you need to RUN to the nearest bookstore and buy at least one guidebook and read it!

Without knowing anything about you or your interests, budget, etc., it virtually impossible to make any useful suggestions.
StCirq is online now  
Sep 22nd, 2004, 01:10 PM
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Hi Rady. For the gondola ride make sure you negotiate the price before you get in. There is a great outdoor restaurant area at the foot of the Rialto bridge. The ambience is amazing. If you like glass, buy it there. Earrings etc... you can load up for yourself and gifts and they cost a fraction of what Venetian glass costs anywhere else. The sites are pretty obvious. Doges palace, St Mark's square, Bridge of Sighs etc. Anywhere you turn, there is something great to see. The best time in Venice (for me anyways) was dusk. You will find that it is a pretty dark city at night but that is part of the charm. Don't fall into a canal though!! Have a great trip. I can't wait to go back myself.
roman is offline  
Sep 22nd, 2004, 02:09 PM
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Walk around a lot and get lost. It truly is the best thing to do there. St. Cirq is right about getting a guidebook, though. And I would add, get a good, folding laminated map of the city.

Reasonable restaurant? We like Trattoria Sempione. Ask around for it.
mr_go is offline  
Sep 22nd, 2004, 02:27 PM
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Go to a bookstore and buy a guidebook on Venice that includes maps. Read it together on the plane!! Venice is a fairly small place geographically. You can just wander around and have fun getting lost. Or attempt to use a map and the street signs (painted on the corners of buildings) and go to the major sites: San Marcos, Rialto Bridge, Bridge of Sighs, etc. Personally I wouldn't do a gondola but that's just me. The vaporetto (public water bus) is a good way to get around, besides walking.

For reasonable restaurants I would just keep your eyes open as you're walking around. There's plenty to choose from both on the main tourist path or a bit off-the-beaten one. Lots of cafes with coffee/wine bar and pastries or ready-made sandwiches available.
suze is offline  
Sep 22nd, 2004, 06:56 PM
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My husband thinks the ONLY reason to go to Venice is to sit in San Marco Piazza and listen to the orchestras till midnight. I can't say I disagree. Me,I just love Venice and walking around.
Lady is offline  
Sep 22nd, 2004, 07:04 PM
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one really good restaurant/bar that we enjoyed last march was Bar da Gino which is on the right had side of the "street" as you walk from the accademia bridge towards the peggy gugginheim museum in the dursoduro section....we had lunch there several days...

warning---food is quite expensive in venice!!!

gondolas are very expensive, about 90E or slightly less... a cheap alternative is one of the boats that crosses the grand canal, where you stand up for the quick trip....there is one from just outside the door to Harry's Bar that goes across to dorsoduro....its also a great time saver...they are located in other places as well....

eat a big meal at noon to save money and eat lightly at nite...

eat in bars and stand up for cheaper meals...
rhkkmk is offline  
Sep 23rd, 2004, 06:45 AM
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I have a long file on Venice, if you'd like to see it, email me

And/or, click at the top of this screen on Destinations, lots of info on Venice
elaine is offline  
Sep 23rd, 2004, 07:08 AM
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StCirq - Why are you so arrogant? I've run in to this a lot with Fodors. People write in to gain valuable insight from people who have experience and then people like you respond with these nasty, pompous comments. Why respond at all? Are you really so rigid that you've never thought of going someplace to just go and find out what to do before you leave? It really makes me hestiate to ask anything.
6470First is offline  
Sep 23rd, 2004, 07:16 AM
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StCirq's first sentence may be a little arrogant, but I think she is perfectly right. The very LEAST one should do is read up on a place -- in a guidebook, at "Destinations" on -- before asking wide-open questions here. No one is asking a poster to be an expert, but the OP really should have a little information about the place she is going...
Eloise is offline  
Sep 23rd, 2004, 09:17 AM
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Venice is indeed about two things - boats and walking. You will want to see Piazza San Marco, the Doges Palace, the basilica at San Marco, Rialto Bridge, and take a ride on the Grand Canal. Other than that, there are some great churches (the Frari in particular) and museums, but no absolute musts perhaps. The other must is to spend time walking some of the peaceful neighborhoods (sestieri) away from the tourist crowds. My favorites for strolling are Cannaregio and Dorsoduro. This is the true magic of Venice. Daytrips out to the islands of Burano and Torcello recommended if you have at least 3-4 days.
dan_woodlief is offline  
Sep 23rd, 2004, 11:19 AM
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If I may suggest something regarding your perception that Fodoritews might be arrogant..many of us, myself included, frequent this board because we love to travel and we love to plan our travel. I first read like a devil and then try to narrow down my choices via threads, discussions and the like on this board. So..when someone posts a question such as yours about a place like Venice, it might seem somewhat out of the "ordinary". Venice is a grand place. Take others' advice and buy a guidebook to anchor yourselves in some of the bigger spots/sights. Take the vaporetto everywhere and walk everyplace else. Check out the archives here for many discussions on Venice including a relatively recent one on where to dine. IMHO, the food of Venice is not its greatest feature. It almost doesn't matter. Be prepared to spend more money than you might anywhere else in Italy.If you are going to be in Venice for more than a day or two, I'd say venture off the well beaten track. Take a boat ride to the outer islands. I am particularly fond of Burano(my birthday there was delightful). Eat at Da Romano on the "main street". Eat outside. Order the grilled shrimp. Go up to the near rooftop of the Hotel Danieli for a drink. A negroni will cost you $16 euros but the view will astound you.
PamSF is offline  
Sep 23rd, 2004, 01:52 PM
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Venice is wonderful for just strolling around in stopping in the beautiful shops. I addored the peggy gugenheim museum...perfect size with modern art. It's in her old house. Also, must have a Bellini in Harry's Bar!
ashelybeau is offline  
Sep 23rd, 2004, 02:10 PM
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I posted this question because I wanted a personal insight into the real Venice other than stilted sentences from a guide book. Thanks so much for all the helpful tip so far.
rady is offline  
Sep 23rd, 2004, 02:16 PM
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Sorry, but I'm in the camp that wants to know why a person chooses to visit a place if they've no idea what to see there; even if it's because you saw something in a movie and now you want to see it...I would want to choose the sights/places that interest me before I ask others what they suggest.
Travelnut is offline  
Sep 23rd, 2004, 02:25 PM
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Rady: I'm not quite sure whether you are using the comments here INSTEAD OF or IN ADDITION TO a guidebook. Most of the posters, even those who gave you plenty of helpful tips, also suggested that you buy and read a guidebook. Or are you just planning to visit the Doges' Palace without knowing anything about its history? It can be done, but I would suggest that it's a very superficial and immature way of doing it.
Eloise is offline  
Sep 23rd, 2004, 02:39 PM
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I disagree~ I don't think you must know the history to enjoy seeing a place. I visited Venice twice without a guidebook (call me immature!).

The difference is Rady was asking us what to do, worried they had no clue.

Myself I love to go somewhere new with no plan and simply wander around. Then again, I didn't post here asking for advice.
suze is offline  
Sep 23rd, 2004, 03:10 PM
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This is the first time I've read of someone who took an exception to St.Cirq's comments!! First time for everything I suppose
ssachida is offline  
Sep 24th, 2004, 05:55 PM
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Seems odd to me spending valuable time and money going to a place with no idea of what one might want to see. Can't imagine coming home from a trip to Italy and only then finding out that Rome has something called the Colosseum, and something else called the Roman and Imperial Forums, and big church in some place called the Vatican, or ... .

rady is doing a good thing by seeking information. And getting a guidebook is a good suggestion.
RufusTFirefly is offline  
Sep 24th, 2004, 08:41 PM
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Rady: I am leaving for Italy in 2 days and did receive a great deal of info from this site, as well as guide books. What disheartens me is that this is the first time I have read threads from a group of "die-hard planners" that are not anticipating the excitement of just exploring on your own and that there is nothing bad to see anywhere in Italy or most places for that matter. I feel sorry for all of you who are so negative about her question. I am 50 yrs. old and am going for my first trip. I am just looking forward to being with my husband in a beautiful country and know that the experience will be jaw-dropping, romantic, exciting, incredible, etc., and not everything has to be planned to the nth degree. Lighten up guys. Where is Ira when you need him?

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