What to do for 2.5 days in Venice

Jul 26th, 2010, 09:34 AM
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What to do for 2.5 days in Venice

My bf and I will be in Venice next week, and really havent decided what we want to see.
We know we want to do some wandering, but we did want to plan one or two things. I thought about the Secret Itineraries tour but someone said it was really hot and long. Perhaps we will just get the admission tickets ahead of time. I also wanted hop over to Burano to take a few pictures.

Any other suggestions?
Bmeyer is offline  
Jul 26th, 2010, 10:23 AM
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Just curios: why and how you decided to spend 2.5 days in Venice?
valtor is offline  
Jul 26th, 2010, 11:36 AM
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? Thats what I wanted to do.
Bmeyer is offline  
Jul 26th, 2010, 11:58 AM
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Palazzo Ducale, St. Mark's Cathedral.



Sit and have drinks.



More sit, more drinks.




If you get real bored, pop over to Verona to see Giulietta, the colliseum, and more (it's been 14 years since I've gone so . . . ).
BigRuss is offline  
Jul 26th, 2010, 01:11 PM
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Wander around Drink wine listen to the music in the square at night.Go to the casino one night.
Its such a beautiful city don't know how you would have time to be bored.Just get away from the tourist area and you will love it.
Venezia123 is offline  
Jul 26th, 2010, 01:14 PM
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If you "hop" over to Burano it will take you the better part of the day to get there, spend time photographing (and you'll probably want to stay for lunch), and then get back.

Many adults find other things in Venice more interesting than (a) the "secret itineraries" tour and (b) wandering around.

More than most places in Italy, Venice is a swirling jumble of different eras and different histories and different rulers -- and what that means is that if you are interested in costumes and fantasy, Venice has a unique tradition of mask-making and architectural fantasy (including Burano). If you are interested in anything Greek and byzantine, Venice is layered with mosaics and icons (see Torcello after you see Burano). If you are interested in music, fishing, woodworking, dessert-making, glass-making, ball gowns, jewelry, engineering, Jewish history, shipbuilding, erotic games and imperial armies-- Venice was a cross-roads for all of it.

Surely you are interested in something in life. Instead of just wandering and consuming sensations, find that aspect of Venice that interests you most. And if you really are stumped, find on your map the Sculoa San Rocco and the Scuola dei Carmine. Just go in. (You'll have to pay a modest fee.) I won't spoil the surprises.

And if you hate Venice (I find it hard to take) and dedice to flee in order to take a trip to Verona, please don't go to Juiliet's house. It's a scam -- the very definition of a tourist trap.
zeppole is offline  
Jul 26th, 2010, 01:58 PM
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we are arriving this friday at noon in venice and leaving monday morning. one of the fun things i am looking forward to is getting lost... ...and drink some wine.....people watch..

watch the silly people in st marks square who let the pigeons land on their heads...
alane is offline  
Jul 26th, 2010, 02:20 PM
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You even have to ask????????????
avalon is offline  
Jul 26th, 2010, 02:55 PM
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Peter_S_Aus is offline  
Jul 26th, 2010, 03:24 PM
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If I had never been to Venice and all I ever saw posted on travel message boards about Venice was "wander, wander, wander" and "get lost" and "watch pigeons" and "eat" -- I think I might ask too if there was anything to do there of adult interest. It sounds like toddler day care.

Maybe some Fodor's posters would like to suggest some more interesting things than that. I'm beginning to wonder if they know any.
zeppole is offline  
Jul 26th, 2010, 03:55 PM
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Well, I would know some, and not just! But Bmeyer, please give us some hints why you are going to Venice, what you want to see, what spurred your interest - please don't say "just wandering about". There's such a wealth of sights in Venice... I have spent about one entire year there, all my visits summed up, and still haven't seen everything. So in just 2.5 days, you're not even going to scratch the surface. And that's why it's all the more important in which corner of this huge surface you should start to try scratching.
I suppose you'll want to spend your first day with the "classic" sights: Piazza S. Marco, the Basilica, Canal Grande, Rialto Bridge, S. Giorgio Maggiore, not just because everybody does, but because they're really worth seeing. But for the remaining 1.5 days, we could suggest a customized itinerary that meets precisely your preferences - if you tell us.
By the way, since 2.5 days are so extremely short for Venice, anyway, I think it's not such a good idea to go to Burano. Burano is unremarkable - there is no art, and the unspoiled flair of a pretty village that once made it famous is gone since the very moment when it actually was famous - it's the typical place that can't endure any crowds of more than 20 people. Now, there are thousands.
(Thank you for the toddler day care remark, zeppole. The probability that many people will like it is not very high, but I do.)
franco is offline  
Jul 26th, 2010, 04:44 PM
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Ah yes, and the Itinerari segreti... I for one think it's an interesting tour, but I never got so far why it's so immensely popular. It's interesting for people who already know Venice and the Palazzo Ducale really well - it offers amazing insight in the history of bureaucracy of the Serenissima. For not-so-advanced Venice lovers, I gather many other sights should be far more interesting.
franco is offline  
Jul 26th, 2010, 05:02 PM
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Depends on your interests. We stayed last time around the corner from a building labeled something about a Naval Historic Museum. I wandered inside one morning while waiting for my wife (I do that a lot). She finally had to come drag me out of the place. To a guy like me with an interest in things nautical, it was a wonder. From gloriously decorated gondolas to Italian naval heroes. (you didn't know there were any, did you?) It was a real surprise.
nukesafe is offline  
Jul 26th, 2010, 05:50 PM
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<> Well, I've seen one or two things, I suppose. I'm being lazy, cut and paste from my trip report, 18 months ago.

The paintings by Carpaccio in the Scuola di San Georgio degli Schiavoni are fun - Carpaccio had a sense of humour. He painted a cycle of paintings detailing how St George maimed the dragon, slaughtered it in front of an admiring crowd, then Saint Jerome leading a lion into his monastery to have a thorn removed from his foot, and Saint Jerome being inspired in his study. The cycle of paintings is a riot of detail and humour.
In the painting where St George mains the dragon, the ground is littered with body parts, and St George’s horse looks considerably more fierce than the dragon. The dragon looks particularly sad, the sort of dragon that might be found in a book of fairy tales. Or maybe the kind of dragon that Charles Darwin discovered on the Galapagos islands, a dragon not feeling too happy being dragged into St. George's celestial limelight.

As Saint George kills the dragon, many people look on, in a docile fashion. Not so St George’s faithful steed, recognisable by its harness. The horse is engaged in bashing another horse with its head, while the bashed horse rears up. I find it as almost as great a focus as the dragon and the dragon appears to be saying, “George, George, if I promised to behave a little better, eat a few less people, could we stop this right now. Please, please, pretty please”. George looks as though he might be amenable to this suggestion.

The third painting shows St Jerome leading a lion into his monastery, to remove a thorn from the lion’s foot – maybe St Jerome is patron saint to veterinary surgeons. St Jerome walks on a crutch, the lion is particularly docile, and Carpaccio may have modelled the lion on his own tabby cat, with touches of golden retriever. This has not stopped the monks from running away in fear, including one monk who is keeping up with the pace on a peg leg. Other people in the painting are not disturbed – fear of lions would appear to be a monkly thing only. Domestic touches flourish – there are washing lines strung from the monastery windows, and the livestock on the monastery green do not appear in the least disturbed by the commotion.

The final Carpaccio shows St Jerome being inspired, gazing out his window. A small dog, a Jack Russell maybe, gazes at him expectantly, willing St Jerome to leave this inspiration kick and throw a ball for him.

Or have a look at the squero, the gondola workshop, near San Trovaso in Dorsoduro.There are two or three surviving squero’s (squeri?) in Venice, and once there were dozens. There are Celle de Squero streets scattered all over Venice. The San Trovaso one is worth a look – the architecture of the building is decidedly mountain, rather than lagoon, vertical timber boards. I’ve seen postcards shot in 1900, showing the same building in snow, and the building is way older than that. Alpine craftsmen were better working in wood than the Venetians, whose forte was stone, and so the alpine influence is evident. Squero is a nickname, for carpenter’s square.

Campo Margerita or Margherita – take your pick. A couple of fish vendors trade here most days. The stone pillar two feet high near the corner of the freestanding buiding is a legacy of the canal that flowed past there – since filled in.

The Basilica is a must see – mosaics that are beautifully detailed.

The Doge’s palace – seat of power, both a political and artistic edifice. You’d need two hours at least to do it justice, and even that would be a scramble. The Secret Tour might be a struggle in summer, as the tour takes you up under the leads, the roof, so could be like a furnace.

This sitting, drinking wine thing. Mostly Italian bars are more about a quick glass of something, and then get on your way. They are not really like the bar in Cheers, where people hang around for a long time, or the bar that we frequent in Melbourne, where we perch on a stool for a couple of hours. But there are several “sitting around” bars in Campo Margerita.

The Frari church is a must see. Costs 3 Euro to get in, and is pretty special.

The Ghetto – I’ve been there several times, although never to any of the synagogues. It is a profound, reflective, and somewhat melancholy place. There’s a Kosher restaurant there.

The Naval Museum, referred to above. I’m a bit nautically inclined, so this interested me.

We spent a while in Venice and never ran out of things that we wanted to see. So we’re going back there again in November for a couple of months. I scribbled a bit last time, and it’s here:
Peter_S_Aus is offline  
Jul 26th, 2010, 06:04 PM
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Peter, I don't really like art much but you've made the three paintings by Carpaccia sound hilarious and fascinating!

I'll have to see if I can drag Mom in there next month. Thanks for all of the ideas!
Iowa_Redhead is offline  
Jul 26th, 2010, 06:14 PM
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Verona – Juliet’s House. Well, there is a balcony. I’d be fascinated to know when “Juliet’s House” became known as such – it may have been ten years ago, or it may have been 200 years ago. One thing is certain, though. Tourist operators have been making money from the reputation for a while – maybe since Romeo and Juliet was first given at The Globe in London, and patrons went off to Italy in search. The English have a 500 year history of visiting Italy and Venice as tourists. Prior to that, I guess, crusading was more popular – and equally lucrative for the Venetians and others.

Follow up quest – scenes portrayed in Two Gentlemen of Verona.

I could imagine that the citizens of Verona would make Will Shakespeare an honourary member of the Verona Tourist Commission – he’s certainly contributed to the local economy.
Peter_S_Aus is offline  
Jul 26th, 2010, 06:20 PM
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Just so that you see, Bmeyer, what can be done for you if we have at least some information: there was a similar thread recently, http://www.fodors.com/community/euro...-in-venice.cfm
Take note that we also need to know which weekdays you're going to spend there!

Peter's Venice suggestions are of course excellent... if they meet your personal interests.
franco is offline  

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