please help...venice question!!!

Sep 8th, 2005, 08:45 AM
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please help...venice question!!!

looks like venice has a mainland and island.
which area should i stay? which is more romantic...the mainland or island? which has more activities?

please help...we're going on our honeymoon in oct. thanks so much.
zebulan77 is offline  
Sep 8th, 2005, 08:48 AM
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More than likely you want to stay in what is considered Venice proper, which is made up of many, many tiny islands.

Other than that, the mainland is Mestre, and there are outer islands such as the Lido, Burano, Murano, Torcello, etc.

Some people stay on the Lido, but most people suggest staying in Venice proper since that is where all the sights are.

There are five or so districts of Venice proper and which one you stay in would depend on what your interests are, how many other tourists you wish to be around, and what you wish to see and do.
Statia is offline  
Sep 8th, 2005, 09:00 AM
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Since you also posted about flying to Nice, note that the airport is on the mainland so coming and going you will have to make extensive plans for airport arrival and departure. There are tons of posts regarding this just enter "Venice Airport" in the research block above. It's not difficult but can be expensive if you don't use public transport
Sep 8th, 2005, 09:19 AM
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Congratulations!!! I'am also planning my trip there in October. I suggest you get a book about Venice, search the internet and visit this forum very often. Fodorites have great advice!! I was just as confused as you but after getting the info it's all coming together. Find about flooding or "acqua alta" and transportation through the canals by boat (water taxi, vapporetto, alilaguna, gondola) so there are no surprises. Check out for very interesting photos and information on Venice. This link has photos of a flooded San Marco.
Hurry up and reserve a hotel!! Go to, very friendly site and you'll have an idea of the geography of the place since you choose where to stay on a map of the city.
Venice lodging is pretty expensive, compared to other cities, but there are alternatives for every budget. We're staying at Foscari Hotel for two nights. Seems pretty good, expensive but good location and it has a private dock (
Akua05 is offline  
Sep 8th, 2005, 11:17 AM
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so i should look for a hotel in venice proper? that is close to all the sights? is lido considered venice proper? if not, how close is it?
zebulan77 is offline  
Sep 8th, 2005, 11:23 AM
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Lido is another island in the lagoon. If you stay there, you'd have to take a boat to visit the most important sights. But it's still an alternative.
Akua05 is offline  
Sep 8th, 2005, 11:48 AM
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I would not advise staying on the Lido, either, because you don't get the full Venice experience and have to travel back and forth each day.

Look for a hotel in San Marco, San Polo, Dorsoduro, Castello or Cannaregio. San Marco will be the most crowded/touristy area, with San Polo and Dorsoduro following behind, but less crowded. Castello and Cannaregio will consist of mostly local Venetians and will not be as close to the major sites.

Bear in mind, however, that Venice is very compact and easy to get around either on foot or by water bus (vaporetto).

Good luck and come back if you have more questions.
Statia is offline  
Sep 8th, 2005, 11:53 AM
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Yes...great advice Statia!!!

Stay IN Venice....don't spend any time commuting. The city is at its best in the early hours before the day-trippers arrive & late after they leave!!
Bailey is offline  
Sep 8th, 2005, 11:55 AM
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There are two problems with staying on the LIdo. first it is primarily a beach resort - and has nothing like the flavor of central Venice.

Second, the Convention Center is on the Lido. And if there is a meeting going on the water boats going back and forth to San Marco can be mobbed - with long waits to get anywhere. (The last meeting we did there some delegates reported waiting 30 minutes or more to even get on the boat - plus the 20 minute trip to San Marco.)

Who wants to wait two hours a day (minimum - what if you want to go back to the hotel before dinner) to travel to see the real center of the city.
nytraveler is offline  
Sep 8th, 2005, 12:20 PM
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Definitely stay on Venice Island (= Venice proper). Either one of the six 'sestieri' (these are the various neighbourhoods) is fine and close to the sights. Some examples:
In San Marco you will be close to St. Mark's Square, St. Mark's Basilica and the Doges Palace.
In San Polo is the splendid Frari-church and the Museo d'Arte Moderna.
In Dorsoduro is the Accademia, the Santa Maria della Salute, the Peggy Guggenheim, etc.
In Cannaregio (my favorite) is the former Jewish ghetto (now a heaven of peace), a number of old synagogues, the Jewish Museum and the Madonna dell' Orto church.
Santa Croce is in the very centre along the Canal Grande.
Castello is (IMO) the least interesting area to stay.
MyriamC is offline  
Sep 8th, 2005, 12:26 PM
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My advice -and what most people choose- is stay IN Venice (not Mestre, not on the mainland, not out on the Lido)... this means you can easily walk to the famous and historic places within the city that is most likely why you are picking Venice in the first place.
suze is offline  
Sep 8th, 2005, 12:55 PM
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I agree with the above posters. Staying in a cheaper hotel on the mainland or the Lido is a false economy. Stay in Venice itself, wander around the streets around dawn, and appear to have the place to yourselves. Depending on how long you intend to stay, look at the possibility of renting an apartment.
willit is online now  
Sep 8th, 2005, 01:08 PM
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A lot depends on what you are looking for.

Arguably the best hotel is across the lagoon, but even if I had the money I would not stay there because they have to deliver you by private launch everytime you want to get to the touristed areas, which are actually quite pleasant before the crowds come and after they leave.

I personally like Dorsiduro for convenience and for being fairly quiet. I would not stay near St. Mark's because it is quite crowded and noisy, although we did enjoy walking over there after the day crowds left to enjoy the battle of the bands. I think Castello might be a nice quiet place where your neighbors would more likely be Venetians than tourists. I liked Burano, but I'm not certain there are any hotels there, and you would be a waterbus ride away from everything. Definitely visit both Burano and Murano; I didn't think Lido was worth seeing.

Enjoy your trip.

While Venice is eminently walkable, I would also get a pass for the waterbusses, so you can visit some of the other islands and tour the grand canal on the cheap.

I don't know how long you will be there, but if it approaches a week, you might look into renting an apartment. You would get more privacy, and more room.
clevelandbrown is offline  
Sep 8th, 2005, 02:12 PM
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I am by nature a luxury hound, so I frequently have a different twist than many of my backpack friends. There are the main islands of venice where San Marco is located and there is the LIDO which is away from the main island as well as some smaller isalnds Like San Clemente.
For sure for activity the main area is great, but very hustle/bustle. Also on the Lido is the main attraction is the beach two big hotels Des Bains and westin Excelsior are directly on the beach. If you dont want beach dont stay on the Lido.

There are however some super luxury hotels like the San Clemente which are on there own island.

I stayed at the latter and loved it, moreover all of these big Hotels have very convenient private shuttles whihc take you for free back and forth to San Marco and they all have pools which is a big plus for kids.

So if you want 24 hours of churches and piazzas stay near San Marco, but if maybe at night and early AM Maybe a quiet environment with a beach or pool stay off San Marco.

I have reviewed the San Clemente for it is top 5 hotels in Italy
oneillchris is offline  
Sep 8th, 2005, 06:08 PM
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Actually, most of Venice is pretty quiet at night once the daytripper herds stampede out of town in the late afternoon and early evening.
RufusTFirefly is offline  
Sep 8th, 2005, 06:29 PM
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wow! i really appreciate your input.
everything you said is extremely helpful. i will look into all these ideas and see which one is best. i'll probably stay in venice proper and take a day trip to lido.

thx alot...
zebulan77 is offline  

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