The 10 best things to do in Venice will be revealed in this article: discover all of them with us!
As soon as you arrive here, the excitement is so great that you wish time would stretch indefinitely so that you could do for good all the unmissable things Venice has to offer.
Although small, in fact, this extraordinary city, suspended between the sea and the lagoon, offers a treasure of wonderful experiences and activities that you cannot do anywhere but here.
To make it easier for you to choose, we have listed here the most unique and interesting activities that will undoubtedly enrich your stay with incredible and exciting nuances.
So discover with us the 10 best things to do in Venice!
Explore Venice with a storytelling Gondolier!❯
The 10 best things to do in Venice (even if you have come here countless times)
When you arrive in this beautiful place, the feeling is that time is always too short to experience it fully. Palaces, museums, monuments of extraordinary elegance, but also colorful festivals and events that set the lagoon ablaze with merriment and fireworks.
In other words, the things to do and experience in Venice are almost endless. In every corner, this incredible place has something to offer, even to those who are returning after countless trips, or those who have lived there all their lives. Indeed, there is nothing more exciting than being a tourist in your own city.
Find out, then, what are the unmissable things to do in Venice!
10. Climb the most famous Campanile
The St. Mark's Campanile towers, with all its grandeur, in the heart of the city.
Such its importance is that it is affectionately addressed by locals as the Paron de Casa which could be translatable as "the Landlord''.
At 98.6 meters (321 ft) high, it not only represents the highest point in the entire historic center, but is also one of the tallest bell towers in Italy!
Its simple shape, topped by a spire with a statue of the archangel Gabriel, has been the inspiration for other buildings, such as the Sather Tower in Berkeley, California, and the Metropolitan Life Insurance Company Tower in New York.
Let's not forget that the base of the tower is also quite unique, with the famous loggia designed by Jacopo Sansovino.
Can you imagine the excitement of climbing up here, with your gaze being able to sweep over the entire downtown and the lagoon?
Book your experience on the top of the St Mark's Bell!❯
9. Step inside the magnificent Church of Gold
Not everyone knows that the famous St. Mark's Basilica has not always been the most important sacred place in the lagoon. Before, in fact, the cathedral was the church of San Pietro di Castello. The change to a cathedral came only in the 19th century, after the fall of the Serenissima Republic.
Beyond the history, it is the sumptuous beauty of the so-called Church of Gold that will leave you breathless.
Already from the outside, when you admire the mosaics and statues and Gothic elements that enrich the façade, you will understand that entering here is certainly one of the best things to do in Venice.
On the other hand, it is inside where the real magic happens, when you can let your eyes wander in a triumph of gold and light.
Don't miss the chance to also see the famous Pala d'Oro, completely covered in gold, silver, precious stones and enamels: a timeless masterpiece created by Venetian goldsmith Giovanni Paolo Boninsegna in the 14th century.
Finally, not everyone knows that the Basilica complex also includes a museum and the splendid loggias, from which you can enjoy an exceptional view of the square in front of it.
Just remember to book your tickets in advance and choose the skip-the-line ticket!
Book your skip-the-line tickets to the Basilica!❯
8. Glide the waters with a great storytelling Gondolier
One of the best things to do in Venice, and certainly not to be missed, is a gondola ride. The lagoon, the canals and the splendor of the elegant palaces reflected on the water: isn't it the most classically Venetian picture?
Not so many people, however, know that this experience can be customized as you wish. What if we told you, for example, that you could sail through the placid waters of the lagoon with a gondolier telling you about the wonders of the place where he has lived all his life? Even more than that, would not it be great to blend together the beauty of the historic center with the real tale of customs, traditions but also everyday life?
You can discover from the water some of the most famous places and at the same time learn about their history, secrets and mysteries. If you wish, the gondola tour can also be organized in a totally private form: just you, the gondolier and your traveling companions!Book your gondola ride with live commentary!❯
7. Climb the most famous spiral staircase in Venice
One of the best things to do in Venice is located in one of the most hidden spots in the Sestiere di San Marco. Yet the famous Church of Gold mentioned earlier is just a few hundred meters away.
This extraordinary place is part of the Palazzo Contarini del Bovolo and is undoubtedly the most famous spiral staircase in the lagoon. In fact, "Bovolo," in Venetian dialect, actually means "spiral".
It is an external staircase, made inside a stair tower. What is breathtaking is not so much the uniqueness of this construction, because several were made at that time, but the size of the tower. It is, in fact, as high as 26 meters (85 ft) and provides access to the four floors of the palace.
Climbing this famous staircase not only allows you to appreciate the extraordinary care and abundance of detail with which it was built, but also to admire one of the most panoramic views of the city's rooftops.
Book your tickets for the most famous Venetian spiral staircase!❯
6. Discover the Museum dedicated to Leonardo da Vinci
The Museum of Leonardo da Vinci, in Campo San Rocco, is an exceptional place.
Here, in fact, you can trace the history of the Florentine genius through a collection of machines designed by Leonardo da Vinci.
In the 6 rooms of the museum, in fact, you will see how, following Leonardo's drawings, scholars have managed to reproduce as faithfully as possible the different devices devised by the visionary genius.
Some of these works, you will be amazed to discover, are the basis of some of the machines we still use today, such as the helicopter or the flywheel.
To fully enjoy your visit, we suggest that you purchase a skip-the-line ticket!
Book your entrance to the Da Vinci Museum!❯
5. Visit the first Jewish Ghetto
The term "ghetto" was invented right here and probably originates from the foundries that were located nearby and were, in fact, called "getto" in Venetian dialect.
This area of the city, just a few hundred meters from today's train station, became the place of residence for Jews as early as the 16th century, making it the first Jewish ghetto in history.
Today, walking through the narrow streets of the Ghetto will allow you not only to discover museums and synagogues, but also Jewish traditions and gastronomy. Indeed, if you head to the heart of the neighborhood, you will also be able to taste the typical cookies of the Jewish culinary tradition while admiring a truly impressive view.
4. Attend the Four Seasons Concert at an exceptional venue
One of the best-known artists who has always linked his name with that of our city is undoubtedly Antonio Vivaldi. He, in fact, was not only born here in the second half of the 18th century, but also worked here for most of his life.
The church of S. Maria della Pietà or the Visitazione, along Riva degli Schiavoni, is in fact known to all Venetians as Vivaldi's church.
Not only will a visit to the church, and the adjoining hospital, allow you to learn more about the history of the Serenissima: here you can attend the Four Seasons Concert, in the very church where the masterpiece was composed!
Performing the concert is none other than I Virtuosi Italiani, one of Italy's best-known orchestras.
Get your tickets to the concert now!❯
3. Explore one of the most impressive collections at Palazzo Venier dei Leoni
The Peggy Guggenheim Collection is much more than just a museum.
It houses within it one of the richest collections of 20th-century art and, more importantly, it is a museum in constant evolution, thanks to numerous donations.
It is located inside the Palazzo Venier dei Leoni, a whitewashed and curious-looking building, perhaps because of its unfinishedness, overlooking the Grand Canal. It was the last residence of the famous American collector Peggy Guggenheim.
You can admire here works by Magritte, Dali, De Chirico, Picasso and countless other artists who forever marked the course of 20th-century art. There are many events that are organized by the museum-a way to bring visitors of all ages and interests closer to art.
Definitely one of the unmissable things to do in Venice!
Get your fast access to the Guggenheim!❯
2. Discover the masterpiece of Venetian gothic architecture
While using this periphrasis, a masterpiece of Venetian Gothic architecture, we all know what we are talking about.
Indeed, the Doge's Palace is one of the most iconic symbols of Serenissima. Not only was this building the seat of power of the Doges, but it is also a triumph of Gothic art. Its exterior architectural elements, from windows to colonnades, are like elegant embroideries carved on stone.
If you decide to visit its interiors as well, you will discover state rooms and private apartments, as well as works of art and extraordinary frescoes. You will finally be able to enter the heart of history, seeing the halls where justice was administered, but also in those where politics were discussed. Finally, you will be able to explore the darker face of the Law of the Republic: the Leads and the terrible Wells, as well as the Hall of Torture and the Hall of the Inquisition.
As this is one of the most visited places in the historic center, we suggest you book your tickets with fast-track access!
Buy your priority tickets to the Doge's Palace here!❯
1. Step into the heart of one of the world's most famous opera houses
It was not easy to choose who to place at number 1 on our list of the best things to do in Venice.
We finally chose him, the Gran Teatro La Fenice. Not only is it one of the most famous opera houses in the world, but it is also a symbol of rebirth for the city itself.
Destroyed, burned and demolished more than once, in fact, this venue is known for the sublime quality of its concerts and ballets. In addition, the famous New Year's Concert, one of the most anticipated events on the entire Venetian calendar, is staged here every year.
Visiting the theater, with a great audio guide explaining every detail of its troubled history, is a truly intense thrill.
Reserve here your tour of the Venetian opera house!❯
Among the 10 best things to do in Venice, which one would you choose?
In this article, we have listed here the things we consider to be the best ones to do in Venice.
It was not easy to list just 10 of them: every corner, in fact, is an incredible treasure chest of new emotions and experiences to be had.
So, where better to start than by discovering the city from its natural element?
Book your gondola ride now!❯