Our Venice Itinerary

Old Oct 10th, 2009, 04:51 PM
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Our Venice Itinerary

We will be in Venice for 2 1/2 days in April of 2010. We would have spent 6 days in Rome and 5 days in Florence before arriving in Venice. Following is our itinerary for Venice. Is it too much? Too little? Anything I should omit or anything I should add? This is our first time in Venice. We will be staying at the Gritti Palace.
Day 1 we arrive in Venice about 11:30 AM.
Santa Maria della Salute
Campo Santa Margarita
Scuola Grande dei Carmini
San Barnaba
Squero di San Trovaso
Zattere

Day 2
Saint Marks Basilica
Doges Secret Itinerary Tour'
Campanile
Museo Correr
Torre dell Orologico
San Zaccaria
Riva degli Schiavoni

Day 3
Santa Maria Gloriosa dei Frari'
Scuola San Rocco
Ca D Oro
Santi Giovanni e Paolo
Scuola de San Giorgio degli Schiavoni
Santa Maria dei Miracoli

At night we will:
Hang at St. Marks Square
A Vivaldi Concert
A Gondola Ride

How does this sound? Is it too much? Not enough? Should I go to St. Maggiore? What are your thoughts on Accademia Galleria and Ca'Rezzonico? We will be going to ALOT of museums in Rome, Florence and Paris.
Please help! Thank you
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Old Oct 10th, 2009, 05:46 PM
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My thoughts on museums in Venice, is that despite the many wonderful museums, some of the finest art work is in the churches. The Accademia is an important museum, but the Correr Museum, at the opposite end of the Piazza from the Basilica is a true gem, uncrowded, small, and would give you a good taste of Venetian art.

The following are my opinions, based on your short time:
The collection in the Ca'd'Oro is missable, just admire the building from the canal side. Ditto Ca'Rezzonico, very unmemorable for me.

The Campanile, which often has a line, gives you a view of mostly rooftops and a few small canals. The view from Giorgio Maggiore tower gives you a gorgeous view of the lagoon waterfront, and you also get to see Tintorettos on the ground floor.

I think the Secret Itinerary tour is overrated, and if pressed for time, the regular tour of the Doge's Palace is more important.


On your day 3, I'd skip the Miracoli church if time runs short (it's pretty but a little out of the way), but I'd add in Giorgio dei Greci which is Greek Orthodox and full of golden decoration inside. Why did you make San Zaccaria a priority? Just curious, among all the churches.
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Old Oct 10th, 2009, 08:24 PM
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I think all your days are pretty full, and you probably won't get to all those places. The main thing is, don't worry about that! It's better to know what you want to see and not waste a lot of time wondering what you want to see once you get there. But don't worry if you don't get to everything, and make sure to just enjoy Venice.

I happen to think that San Zaccaria is fantastic. You have Bellini’s “Sacra Conversazione” (Madonna & Child with Saints), then you can pay 1E (a true bargain!) to go into the Chapel of St. Athanasius (Tiepolo and Tintoretto paintings) and into the Gold Chapel. Absolutely amazing! From there, you can go down to the 10th Century crypt.
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Old Oct 10th, 2009, 09:36 PM
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Venice is the kind of place where I don't think you want a rigid, packaged agenda. I mean, if you have certain things you must do on certain days (e.g. museums not open on some days), put them on the optimal days. But really the best part of Venice is walking around and exploring this unique, beautiful place. Your itinerary seems too full to me. I'd pick the top two things you MUST do every day and make the others "optional," if you have time. Relax, stroll, ride in the boats, soak it all in, no stress.

I'd put "leisurely morning walk" on one day's agenda. Venice is great at night but in some ways even more wonderful in the morning, before the tour groups arrive. Seeing the kids walking off the school in the morning and the strong guys pushing heavy carts up the bridges (deliveries from the boats) reminds you Venice is a real place, not just a big Disney attraction like it sometimes feels like during the day.
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Old Oct 10th, 2009, 11:47 PM
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I did the Secret Itinerary tour and I liked it, I also agree on the Giorgi Maggiore campanile, it has great views.

As for the rest on your list, as others have said, you probably won't get to do it all because what you didn't figure into your schedule is getting lost. and it will happen but that's part of visiting Venice. Just walking around Venice is a joy.

For me, if the weather is great, unless I have something specific I want to see in a museum, I would rather just walk around Venice, because the city itself is a museum.

Enjoy what you did get to see and don't worry about the rest. My opinion is that it's better to really savor what you do see than not to be able to remember what you do see because it was a fast stop at each place.

Either way, enjoy.
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Old Oct 11th, 2009, 02:20 AM
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- St Mark's square is crowded and overrated. It's good for photo op but not for hanging out (which you would be doing practically with every other tourists in Venice). Instead, try one of the smaller quarters where restaurants are sure not to rip you off and the atmosphere is more relaxed and friendly. Save St. Mark's for the break of dawn (it is absolutely essential that you wake up really early in the morning for this), when the restaurants are just setting up, the market in Rialto is just ramping up, and you have the square all to yourself (if you're lucky, you might even have some mist on the ground, kind of like a cherry-on-top-effect).

- I second the others in saying that Venice is best when you try to stay away from the attraction and rigid itineraries and just enjoy Venice for what it is. Instead of going to museums, go to the curches, which feature the art in context. Instead of a gondola ride, buy water bus day passes and enjoy Venice from the water and get off when you see something that interest you. And as much as having a bird's eye view of a city is good, Venice is ultimately a city seen from the ground level. Don't waste your time waiting in line for an hour or two to get a glimpse from above when you could be exploring quiet alleys and canals and discovering corners that you can call your own piece of Venice (something that honestly seems frustratingly impossible until it happens. Watch David Lean's "Summertime" for a great example)

- Try to spend a day or two exploring the areas around the big cities. In Venice, there's Verona, Padua, and Vicenza. Padua would be too big for a day trip. Vicenza and Verona would be perfect. The areas around those smaller cities (they're not really smaller: all three cities have more inhabitants than Venice) also have great sceneries and small towns, and I suggest renting a car for a day and just getting lost. If you're here on the last Sunday of the month, travel to Piazzola sul Brenta for one of the biggest flea markets in northern Italy (if not, just google flea markets in te Veneto--there's one happening every Sunday). Camisano has one of the biggest weekly Sunday market. Bassano del Grappa is a charming Italian town up in the mountains. There are tons of compact castle towns along the way (Castelfranco, Cittadella, Soave, Marostica). Recoarmo Terme and Abano Terme are renowned spa towns. If you go northeast, there's Trieste, Aquileia (I just visited, and it's a quick, two-hour magnificent tour of the largest Roman city yet unearthed), Udine, Belluno. The coast has Jesolo and Grado (which is 10 minutes from Aquileia). The Berici hills south of Vicenza is dotted with agriturismos and old Palladian villas. Bottom line, it's good to remember that Venice was a state, not just a city. Go and see Venice's influence--and source of influence--beyond the lagoon.
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Old Oct 11th, 2009, 02:56 AM
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I think that kungfufelon may not have noticed that jojuice has 2½ days in Venice, not 2½ months! In my opinion, jojuice has been rather over-ambitious, especially for the first day, which is really only half a day. I don't know what days you will be in Venice, but remember that museums close on Mondays (in general; there may be exceptions).
Santa Maria della Salute - yes, won't take long.
Campo Santa Margarita - yes, have a spritz and a gelato.
Scuola Grande dei Carmini - I cannot comment - I've never been inside, in 10 visits to Venice. But I do intend to go.
San Barnaba - the church is usually closed, and is deconsecrated [I believe]. I expect that anything that was worth seeing has been removed. Did you mean the Campo? or the area?
Squero di San Trovaso - yes, won't take long. Have an ombra or two at the Cantina del Vino gia' Schiavi, next to Ponte San Trovaso.
Zattere - yes. Take a stroll in the evening - well any time of day, really.
I'll give someone else a chance now.
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Old Oct 11th, 2009, 07:18 AM
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Bert 4545--I also feel that I am being overly ambitious for the first day. I will be in Venice on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday. Since you visited Venice 10 times would you save the Dorsudoro district for another day? What would you do on the first day? I do not want to miss the Santa Maria Gloriosa de Frari or the Scuola San Rocco. Do you also feel that Ca D Oro is best seen from the outside? Thanks to all of you for the advice. I am going to start weeding out some sights. Elaine--I have read good things about San Zaccaria. I do hope to get there.
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Old Oct 11th, 2009, 07:41 AM
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hi, jojuice,

a "must" for me, which you could easily fit in at the beginning of Day 3, is a trip to the rialto market, especially the fish section. Half and hour [or longer] there is worth twice as long at any museum.

also ca' d'oro is not very convenient after the scuoloa di san rocco - either go there before the rialto parket [but be careful, it's over by about 12 noon] or go to ca' rezzonico instead, which is far closer to the frari. or neither!

for what it's worth, this is what I'd do on Day 3:

start at the rialto market, walk through the back streets to the frari, view the interior, have coffee.

then enter the scuola di san rocco, view, walk through to the dorsoduro and have lunch on the zattere. after lunch, get a boat over to the guidecca, walk along to the end, get the boat to san giorgio, go up the campanile, get boat to san marco, then either go for a walk up to the arsenale throguh cannareggio to give you an idea of the less touristy side of Venice, or get the boat up to Ca'd'oro, and from there, explore the ghetto. there wil be plenty of churches to pop into along the way!

have a great trip,

regards, ann
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Old Oct 11th, 2009, 08:09 AM
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One of the first things I would do is a vaporetto trip down the grand Canal to get a sense of the magnificent buildings that line it.
The church of San Giorgio Maggiore would be high on my list--a major Palladian church and a different view of the city from the island plus the Tintorettos

As for museums vs. walking/exploring, I think it depends a lot on how much you like the Venetian school of painting. I am not a huge fan myself
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Old Oct 11th, 2009, 08:29 AM
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Hi! Looks like I have a very similar itinerary. We fly into Paris for 5 days then Venice for 3 days then to Florence and Rome. I really enjoyed your post because an itinerary never occurred to me. I have only travelled as a teenager and did everything on the fly. Your post and the replies gave me many great ideas. Our big difference though, is that we will have our 3 kids with us. I don't mean to interfere with your post for your trip but was wondering, since you have done so much research, which things on your itinerary sounded good for kids, ages 12, 10, 9 (if you don't mind)?

P.S. We also be there in April. Staying at Westin Europa.
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Old Oct 11th, 2009, 10:35 AM
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Jill02--
Try this website. www.indagare.com
Also, Fodors will be a help. The sights that have a duck in front of them are family friendly.
Good luck and enjoy
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Old Oct 11th, 2009, 11:15 AM
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hi jill,

if you click on my name, you will find my trip report from our family hols in venice last year. my kids are a bit [lol, all right, a lot] older than yours, but it amy give you a few ideas.

there is also a thread kicking around about venice for children, but I'm hopeless at finding threads so you'll have to search for it.

have a great trip,

regards, ann
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Old Oct 11th, 2009, 04:34 PM
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Bert 4545 said:
"San Barnaba - the church is usually closed, and is deconsecrated [I believe]. I expect that anything that was worth seeing has been removed. Did you mean the Campo? or the area?"
The church is certainly de-consecrated, and might have some sort of exhibition in it. There was an exhibition of Leonardo's machinery when we were there.
Campo San Barnaba is two minutes from Campo Margherita. The Ai Artisto bar in Campo san Barnaba is most welcoming.

Venice for Teenagers is here:
http://www.fodors.com/community/euro...-teenagers.cfm
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Old Oct 12th, 2009, 09:59 AM
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I very much liked the Accademia museum, and am surprised to see so far no mention of the Peggy Guggenheim Collection. For art lovers am thinking they're a must, the former for old masters and the latter for late 19th and early 20th century paintings.

Like other posters here, I was pretty underwhelmed by the Ca' d'Oro. However, I enjoyed the Ca' Rezzonico. The Museo Correr (actually Venice's historical museum, though it has some artwork as well) was indeed quite good and is right by St. Mark's, the Campanile, and Doge's Palace. And am thinking the Scuola Grande di San Rocco and Santa Maria Gloriosa dei Frari' Church are musts.

With some planning ahead, I was able to see all the above in a full two day span, plus do a good bit of walking around the city. If memory serves, I saw St. Mark's, the Campanile, Museo Correr, Doge's Palace, and Ca' d'Oro the first day; then on day two, the Accademia, Ca' Rezzonico, Guggenheim Collection, Frari Church, and Scuola Grande di San Rocco. Did some wandering around the city in the early morning and after the sights closed. In order to do this, would suggest getting an early start and planning to have both days full.
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Old Oct 12th, 2009, 10:22 AM
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Regarding Ca d'Oro - if you have a love for ceramics, then it is worth your while as it has an important collection. Other than that, it's really not worth going inside. Absolutely, do not miss Frari or Scuolo Grande San Rocco. Plan on spending 90 minutes in each at the very minimum - there is a lot of great art in both. Scuola Grande dei Carmini is also nice but in my opinion, the church is more special with its red marble columns-wow.
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Old Oct 12th, 2009, 10:47 AM
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I was planning on going to the Campo San Barnaba. I think we will forego the Ca D Oro. Yes, the Scuola San Rocco and Frari are musts for us. Now, my new itin is as follows:
Day 1--Arrive in Venice 11:30AM
Staying at Gritti Palace.
Santa Maria della Salute
Zattere
Campo San Barnaba and Campo Santa Margarita
Scuola Grande dei Carmini

Day 2
St. Marks Basilica
Museo Correr
Doges Palace-Secret Itineraries Tour
St. Maggiore
Riva degli Schiavoni

Day 3
Scuola San Rocco
The Frari
Scuola de San Giorgio de Schiavoni
Santi San Paolo e Giovanni

Does this sound feasible? Or is day 3 too much? Can I fit Scuola de San Giorgio or Santi Giovanni e Paolo into day 2?
Thank you
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Old Oct 12th, 2009, 06:54 PM
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You will be doing some of Dorsoduro when you visit the Zattere, the Salute and the squero. I'd miss out the Carmini the first day to save time. It's horses for courses - if you like modern art the Guggenheim might be for you. The Ca d'Oro is quite small and really overpriced, imo
I have seen posts that say that Rick Steve gives a tip on how to beat the line [queue] at San Marco. I have given the same tip on another thread. 'St Maggiore' is San Giorgio Maggiore. You presumably know that its campanile is a better option than San Marco's. The Riva is usually crowded, in full sun [maybe not too hot in April] and wall-to-wall souvenir stalls. There is not much to see on it, apart from the Victor Emmanuel monument. But there are good views of San Giorgio Maggiore from it. You may be lucky and find that they have taken the hoardings down from around the Bridge of Sighs. Santi Giovanni e Paolo [not what you typed the first time] is shortened in Venetian to San Zanipolo. The derivation is easier to understand than that of San Trovaso or San Marcuola. 'Giovanni' is 'Zani' and Paolo is Polo in Venetian. You will not be able to miss the statue of Colleoni, nor the Scuola Di San Marco. Go into the Scuola [now the hospital] and ask to see the library. [Look up!]
You can get walking itineraries from the tourist office in the south-west corner of St Mark's Square - maybe you could adapt one or two of them to get you around the places you want to go to. Everything depends on how long you might spend in some of these places. There is a lot to see in San Zanipolo, if you are interested in what is there. If you are not interested, you might walk round it in 10-15 minutes and then wonder why you bothered to go in at all. If anything is a must, then a vaporetto ride along the Grand Canal has to be it. Get a 12 hour pass on the day you decide to visit San Giorgio Maggiore.
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Old Oct 13th, 2009, 02:52 PM
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Thank you Bert 4545. You seem to know alot about Venice. Any good restaurants that you can suggest? We like practically everything but do not want to take out a second mortgage. Also, I am in love with gelato. Any suggestions on where to get some? Thank you
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Old Oct 13th, 2009, 03:30 PM
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Here are a couple of our favorite gealterie. this is my personal favorite. La Boutique del Gelato, it is in Castello on Salizzada San Lio next to the Hotel Bruno. Not far from Campo Santa Maria Formosa.

The other is Nico on the Zatterre in Dorsoduro, very close to fondamenta Nani.

And a couple of eateries in the same locales:

Al Mascaron in Castello just a bit off Campo Santa Maria Formosa.

Either Ristorante San Trovaso or Taverna San Trovaso in Dorsoduro. Run by the same family, the taverna is a bit more intimate while the ristorante has a large outdoor terrace for dining.

While you a looking for the San Trovaso spots stop in at Enoteca Cantinone Gia Schiavi in the same general area and have a glass of wine and some cichetti.
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