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Venice stay - Mestre, Venice or Lido area?

Venice stay - Mestre, Venice or Lido area?

Old Mar 2nd, 2007, 02:21 PM
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Venice stay - Mestre, Venice or Lido area?

I'll be staying in Venice 3 nights beg. April for the first time and can't decide in which area to stay.

What are the highlights of each one of these areas of Venice.

Please help! Thank you.
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Old Mar 2nd, 2007, 02:29 PM
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Mestre is a separate city on the mainland across the water from Venice. Lido is a long skinny island, also across from Venice proper although politically part of Venice. There you will find beaches.

I would stay in Venice, not in Mestre and not on the Lido. If you are on a tight budget, Mestre might offer some good options but you will have to take a short train trip to get to Venice itself. From the Lido you will need to cross the water by boat to get to most of the "sights" of Venice. I would take a look at a map to get the idea..
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Old Mar 2nd, 2007, 02:33 PM
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Venice is the highlight. No need to stay elsewhere. Stay in Venice.
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Old Mar 2nd, 2007, 02:34 PM
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ekscrunchy - thank you for your response.

I'm familiar with the map but didn't know what was the difference between the islands.
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Old Mar 2nd, 2007, 02:38 PM
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If I were rating them for a first time stay of three nights on a scale of 1 to 100, I'd give Venice proper a 99, Lido a 7, and Mestre a 2.

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Old Mar 2nd, 2007, 02:54 PM
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Now that you have hopefully decided to stay in Venice, the decision is WHERE in Venice. The different districts have such different personalities. Venice is fairly easy to get around (once you get a good map and learn how to use the various "boats&quot. We stayed in Dorsoduro area last summer...a real Venesian neighborhood just across the Grand Canal from St. Marks. Easy to get to and quiet after a long day in the crowds near St. Marks and the markets.
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Old Mar 2nd, 2007, 03:42 PM
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Venice proper! Absolutely not Mestre, and the Lido only if you have some special reason to wanting to stay out there (realize you have to commute by boat to get to where you want to be in Venice to see things).
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Old Mar 2nd, 2007, 04:16 PM
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Venice proper is the only place to stay.

Mestre is largely industrial business - and not a part of Venice at all.

The Lido is one island that has a (fairly unpleasant) public beach, the convention center and some attendant hotels - but is inconvenient (20 minute boat ride) to the central portions of Venice. It's esp inconvenient when a convention is on since then you're lining up for boats with thousands of convention goers.
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Old Mar 3rd, 2007, 02:46 PM
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NeoPatrick, this is the second forum topic I've seen your replies, and they have been spot on.

One needs to stay in 'downtown' Venice.

I like to stay in west Castello, (just north east of San Marco) because it's an easy walk to San Marco and the Rialto bridge.

Lots of restaurants and easy to walk to pretty much anything, including the water buses.
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Old Mar 3rd, 2007, 03:03 PM
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I think staying in Mestre is like staying in Jersey when you're visiting New York City or staying in Oakland if you're visiting San Francisco.

I have not been to Mestre but I don't think there's any hightlights there.

The Lido -- I visited it for a day and didn't like it that much, I found the cars to take away from the magic of Venice.

It's worth paying a few more dollars and staying in Venice, otherwise, personally I don't think you're really visiting Venice.
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Old Mar 3rd, 2007, 03:28 PM
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Actually, NYtrav, that's not true, Mestre IS part of Venice proper, it is not the "historical center, i.e., what one traditionally thinks of as Venice, but Mestre is definitely part of Venice, as is the Lido and the islands of Murano, Burano, Torcello and Porte Marghera. Since I keep up on things in Venice in a variety of different ways even when I'm not there, I have to say that Venice City Hall (which alternates spending days in the Venice historical center, and its offices in Mestre), is really making an effort to promote mainland Mestre, spiffing it up, there are a number of festivals there, and there will be a huge rock concert in Mestre this summer-(but Elton John is supposed to play in Piazza San Marco in a few months (he has a home in Giudecca) IF they can work out the logistics and the historical preservation aspects).

Mestre is definitely cheaper-and that is the main feature-it does also have a bit of a historical center, and many people happily stay in Mestre and day trip into Venice, as it is only about a 15 minute train ride. So if cost is your major concern, then you might want to consider that alternative.

But I too, would recommend staying in the historical center of Venice for your first trip. I would suggest staying in the district of Cannaregio or San Polo, in and around the Ca d'Oro/Rialto fish and vegetable market area, with its many and wonderful authentic wine bars and trattorias that don't solely cater to tourists- to see the liveliness and color of the ancient fish and vegetable markets-to experience the Venetian way of life. I'll be there in a little less than two weeks, and cannot wait. Opening night for a new opera at the exquisite La Fenice, going to my favorite bacari (Venetian wine bars, where you eat all manner of cichetti (tapas-like dishes, primarily fish-based), meeting up with an ex-pat or two, going out in a friend's boat to cruise the canals and, who knows what else! I spend weeks in this lagoon city each year, and I barely touch the surface-seriously-of things to do.

No place like it in the world-I'd live there if I could- "magari!"

P.S. The folks at ACTV added a new stop on the #1 vaporetto line-called "Rialto Mercato" (Rialto Market) and it only runs from 8am until 2pm each day-which is when the markets are open. I have long wondered why there was no stop there-because you either have to go to Rialto and walk to the market, or take the traghetto over from Cannaregio-it wasn't easily accessed. So I'm glad it's there now, but I wish it were in longer operation.

Also, the vaporetto passes have gone up. 30 Euro for a 72 hr. pass now, 12 Euro for a 24 hour pass-eek!

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