What to do in Venice?

Old Nov 15th, 2001, 03:46 PM
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What to do in Venice?

My husband, two year old son and I are traveling to Italy for the first time ever. We will stay in an apartment in Venice for the first 8 days and then on to a small town in Tuscany for the remainder of our trip...our "dance card" is bursting with things to do in Tuscany, and wondered if anyone can suggest what not to miss in Venice?!
Old Nov 15th, 2001, 04:35 PM
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We just returned on the 12th from Italy, our first time as well. Venice is FUN! Although I think 8 days is too long, don't be afraid of leaving after 3 or 4 days and use the extra time to enjoy Florence. Tucana region is wonderful. In Venice, have FUN just getting lost and turned around. Keep an attitude of a kid and you'll have the best time. Look for the out of the way restauants where the local go, but make reservations or you'll find them full. Restaurants don't open until after 7pm.
You'll have plenty of time to examine the whole place and surrounding islands. It is beautiful!!! Enjoy!
Old Nov 15th, 2001, 05:22 PM
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I agree with above poster. Venice is great but 8 days may be too long. Yet we have been back 3 times so it may be fine.

Things to do: You can buy three day passes on the vaporettos that move you around the town. This way you can get on and off at will and not have to get a ticket each time. My wife and I have enjoyed just getting on one of the boats and gradually working ourselves to a seat in the bow as people get off. Then just sit there and enjoy the scenery and stops for a while until you are ready to get off.

Murano: Fun to go to and don't take the glass salesmen too seriously. Just look at the goods and enjoy the pitch to buy. Plus, you probably will buy something. Maybe a "little horse". That will mean something to you once you are on Murano.

Drinks in St Marks square with the music playing. They nail you for the drinks, but hell, where else can you go for this atmosphere?

Gondola ride: Gotta do one once. You are in Venice. It is required. Don't let the jaded people tell you it is touristy. It is the first question everyone will ask you when you get home: Did you do a gondola ride?

Get lost in all the alleys and nooks and crannies. This is Venice. We enjoy the small shop called Max's. It has hand made items and nice people. It is on the same street as the famous Harry's Bar, hangout for Ernest Heminway. Max is a dog and his picture is on the sack from the store.

Visit the Danielli hotel. Lobby is magnificient and a must see.

Eat and drink and have a great time!
Old Nov 16th, 2001, 12:17 AM
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It's also worth taking a day trip on the train to Padua .... especially if you're a bit of a Shakespeare buff!
Old Nov 16th, 2001, 04:12 AM
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Head to the Doges Palace and sign up for the "Secret Tour" of the palace. It was 24.000L each and lasted an hour. Very interesting tour of the 3rd floor of the palace where all the other tours don't go there. Saw prision cells and many small rooms.

Burano is a lovely colorful island (take the vaporetto from Fond. Nuovo).
Old Nov 16th, 2001, 04:24 AM
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If you take a day trip to Padua, which is about an hour away on the train, be sure to see the Giotto frescoes in the Arena chapel. A very early, some say the earliest, instance of "realism" in Western art.
Old Nov 16th, 2001, 06:11 AM
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We were in Venice for ten days this spring and loved every minute of it, including rain and snow. Our third visit in as many years. Just get lost and enjoy it. BTW, one wonderful way to get to Padova is via the Brenta Canal. Tours run daily each way and visit the magnificent Paladian villas on the canal. Try Brenta.com. The pictures are enough to sell you on the trip. Ciao.
Old Nov 16th, 2001, 06:39 AM
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1. Get a Bellini at Harry's bar - they're small and expensive but the experience is worth it.

2. Buy a Carnivale mask.

3. Sit in San Marcos square at night and listen to the dueling orchestras.
Old Nov 16th, 2001, 07:44 AM
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Hi, We've just returned from Italy - 4 days in Venice - our second visit. The one site we visited this year was the church Santa Maria Gloriosa dei Frari. We thought we'd spend 15 minutes there but we enjoyed it so much we spent hours. We were totally intrigued with the huge, ornate tombs and the stories that accompanied each, the Monk's choir and The very large painting of The Assumption of the Virgin, by Titan. It was an exceptional day. Enjoy.
Old Nov 16th, 2001, 08:24 AM
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thank you! thank you! I love all the suggestins...is this a great web-site or what?!
Old Nov 16th, 2001, 09:15 AM
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With eight days, I think you will have time to see Venice in detail and take daytrips too. However, as the parent of a 2-year old myself, I know you will need a lot more time than without. We didn't take our daughter this time, but we feel Venice is a great place for children. Take a daytrip by boat to Burano and Torcello. Just like most of Venice, these places give a child plenty of space to run around and have fun without worrying about cars. You can easily do both in half a day or so, as they are only about 10 minutes apart by boat. Definitely spend lots of time wandering the backstreets of the Cannaregio, Castello, and San Polo neighborhoods. Your son should love all the small shops that sell masks and puppets. Our daughter loves the two masks and wooden Pinnochio puppet we bought her. Of course, he will also love running around on Piazza San Marco and seeing all the pigeons. Make sure to walk the backside of the Dorsoduro along the Giudecca Canal. As far as top sights go, there are only a few musts in Venice - the basilica, Doge's Palace, the Piazza, the Frari Church, the Rialto Bridge, the Grand Canal, and perhaps the Accademia and Guggenheim museums. There are lots of great art-filled churches throughout the neigborhoods, particularly in the part of Castello near the Piazza and in Cannaregio. However, the best part is just wandering the streets and riding the boats up and down the canal. Make sure to go on the Accademia and Rialto bridges so you and your son can watch all the boat traffic.
Old Nov 16th, 2001, 09:26 AM
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I agree with recommendations on wandering the more "off-beat" neighborhoods. that was my favorite part of Venice. You'll find better restaurants that way, avoiding the tourist traps in the general vicinety of Piazzo San Marco.

Absolutely do not miss the food markets! Don't know the name of the area but if you cross over the Ponte Rialto, bear right and walk a few blocks there is an amazing market with foods on display that one rarely sees in the states. Whole pig and goat heads, really interesteing seafood. I found it fascinating.
Old Nov 16th, 2001, 03:21 PM
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8 days in Venice is not too long. We have spent 2 separate weeks in Venice and can't wait to get back. In somewhat of a priortized order, here are our favites:

-Dinner at Toscana Fiacchetteria with Roberto as you waiter. Eat too much and have himn select your cheese course and your wine
-The Peggy Guggenheim Museum
-Chichetti (little snacks) and wine at Do Mori.
-Walking the fish market at Pescaria Rialto early in the morning.
-Espresso or Cappucino taken early in the morning at any of the tiny bars in the Rialto vegetable market.
-Titian's assumption at the Frari
-Carpaccio's paintings at Scuola di San Georgio di Schiavoni
-A tour of the Ghetto
-Getting lost (easy to do and very cheap)
-Riding the Vaporetto on a cheap tour of the grand canal and lagoon (No. 1 or 82, do this during the day and at night both!)
-Taking a water taxi from the airport or Piazzale Roma to you hotel or apartment (Very expensive)
-Going to the Murano Collection on Murano for some exquisite glass by Carlo Moretti or Vennini.
-Gelato at Nico on the Zattere
-Chichetti and wine at the Anchovy
-Feeding the pidgeons on Piazza San Marco
-Getting a picture of your son on the lion in Piazetta San Marco
-Taking the elevator to the top of the bell tower at San Georgio for the view of the basin of San Marco and the square.
-Seeing the horses up close at San Marco. Both the replica's in the Loggia of the building and the real ones in the museum on the second floor inside.
-Gelato at Paolin
-Stopping in at Mask stores.
-Shopping in all the toy stores on the San Marco side of the Rialto Bridge.
-Taking a Traghetto ride.
-Buy a pinocchio toy from a street vendor
-Have a caffe at one of the great bars on San Marco and listen to the live music.
Old Nov 17th, 2001, 07:52 PM
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Dale - the tour you mentioned to Padua, seeing the villas along the way, sounds wonderful, but the website you gave leads me to a site on rafting.

Is this the right website or do you have another address?

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