Discover with us an itinerary of things to do in Venice in 3 days: how to get there and what to visit. A ready-to use guide to the city of dreams.
Here on Visit Italy we have already written about Venice, its lagoon, its museums, we have given you advice on where to sleep or on the 10 must-see things to do in this wonderful city. In this article we propose you an itinerary tested by our editors and ready-to use for everything there is to do in Venice in 3 days. Ready to go?
What to do in 3 days in Venice
Our guide on what to do in 3 days in Venice can only take into account the peculiarities of this extraordinary city. Canals, bridges, sestieri: Venice is a city that should certainly be toured on foot. However, it may also be necessary to know how to get around by public transportation, which here in Venice is really special.
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How to arrive in Venice?
In Venice you cannot use any private vehicle. If you are arriving in the city by train, you can take it easy and enjoy the whole trip to Venice Santa Lucia station. If, on the other hand, you are thinking of arriving in the city by car, we recommend that you leave it in one of the car park areas just outside the entrance to the city, in Mestre or in Piazzale Roma. From there you can take one of the many vaporettos, buses, or ferries that transport visitors and depart for the centre of Venice every 30 minutes.
Being able to visit Venice in just 3 days is not easy. In this guide we have selected - and it wasn't simple - just a few of the attractions of the marvellous Venetian city, in order to give you a comfortable itinerary that allows you to enjoy the beauty of Venice as much as possible.
- St Mark's Square, with its basilica, bell tower, terraces and Doge's Palace
- Caffè Florian (and Correr Museum)
- Bridge of Sighs
- Real Gardens or Acqua Alta Bookshop
- Walk through the calli to the Rialto Bridge
- Aperitif at the bacari, just like a local!
We start with the St Mark's Square complex, which is divided into: Basilica, Campanile, Terrazze and Palazzo Ducale. The tour of these four Venetian architectural beauties takes about three hours, and the convenience is that they are all located in the same square. At this link you will find the definitive guide to the Gothic jewel of the Lagoon, you can't miss it! After your visit, we recommend having a coffee and a pastry at Caffè Florian, a historic 18th-century café located right next to Correr Museum, a museum of Venetian art and antiquities. If you are an enthusiast, or if you are simply curious about the visit, we suggest you drop in! Just behind the square, you will find the Bridge of Sighs. This Baroque-style bridge connects the Doge's Palace to the Prigioni Nuove: it was the passage used by inmates in the prisons to get to the inquisitors' offices. Legend has it that at the time of the Serenissima Republic of Venice - 17th century - prisoners crossed the bridge sighing for the last time before their sentence.
After lunch you can choose: a stroll through the Giardini Reali, dating back to Napoleon's time and restored in 2020. Not far from the S. Marco waterbus stop, they are one of the city's green areas overlooking the water. Or a visit to the Acqua Alta Bookshop, photographed by tourists from all over the world, is truly a Venice gem. Inside, you can find old, new, used and unobtainable elsewhere, or antique volumes. This is one of our favourite places in Venice, not least because its owner is always ready to provide useful tips on the city and the dishes of the day from nearby restaurants.
Now a walk through the calli to the Rialto Bridge, only 10 minutes from both the places we have just recommended you see. This is the oldest of the four bridges spanning the Grand Canal, inaugurated in 1591 but some documents claim it already existed - in the form of a floating bridge - from the second half of the 12th century. This was the site of the ancient mint of Venice.
After crossing the bridge, all that remains is to head for one of the many bacari you will find on your way. The Bacaro (or Bacareto) is a type of Venetian tavern where wines are served by the glass and 'cicheti', snacks in small portions that can be consumed as aperitifs, snacks, or after dinner. The Venetians have the custom of organising 'Bacaro tours' in which they go around Venice and its osterias in one day drinking, eating and laughing with friends. If by your second day you are already tired of visiting and want to experience Venice like a local, this is a good idea!
- Peggy Guggenheim Collection
- Basilica of Santa Maria della Salute
- Academy Galleries
- La Fenice Grand Theatre
Venice is famous for its Biennale. Founded in 1895, it is a cultural foundation that promotes artistic trends by organising international events for art, architecture, music, cinema, theatre and dance. In addition to the Biennale del Cinema, for which every summer the Lido fills up with actors and directors and insiders who make the city more chic than it already is, every two years, Venice hosts the Art and Architecture Biennial in the Giardini (sestiere di Castello). From April to November, it is possible to visit the pavilions that host artists from all over the world and for whom the curious flock from all over the world. We believe that a trip to the Venice Biennale is a must.
If not, what you could do on your second day in town is visit the Peggy Guggenheim Collection in Palazzo Venier dei Leoni, one of Italy's leading museums of European and American art. Inside you will also find a great cafeteria for your breakfast. From here, you can easily move to the Basilica di Santa Maria della Salute, consecrated in 1687 and one of the greatest expressions of Palladio's designs. The Virgin Mary is one of the city's patron saints and this church represents the Venetians' gratitude for having freed them from the plague. The Accademia di Belle Arti di Venezia, is the state university founded on the site of the Ospedale degli Incurabili. Many masters of art and architecture have taught and first attended here. Walk to the Gallerie dell'Accademia, named after the university and where works of art were acquired for restoration from the beginning. Cross the Ponte dell'Accademia bridge and head for Teatro La Fenice, Venice's opera house and one of the most prestigious in the world. It was twice destroyed and then rebuilt, and it is here that the famous New Year's Concert is held every year, tickets for which are sold out months in advance. Home to many premieres of important names, including Verdi, Bellini, Stravinsky, Rossini, Kagel and many others.
Venice day 3
- Jewish Ghetto
- Murano Islands
During your third day, we suggest you to slow down. Now that you are familiar with all the colours of the city, it is time to get lost in its streets and let yourself be carried away by the vibrant Venetian atmosphere. The Jewish Ghetto will be your first stop, one of the most important in Europe and the centre of Venice's Jewish community since 1516, where you will find numerous synagogues. Take a walk in the Cannaregio sestiere, crossed by the Guglie and Tre Archi bridges: the only three-arched bridge left in Venice. Just from Guglie you should take the vaporetto that will take you to the Murano Islands in the Venice Lagoon. Its islands are connected by bridges, so it will be easy for you to juggle from one to the other in search of the piece of glass that suits you best.