Kempinski Blog Article
Venice is a city unlike any other. With seemingly endless waterways and canals, architecture that would take months, maybe even years, to fully explore and appreciate, and an enviable arts scene, Venice is well deserving of its status as a cultural haven.
Found in a beautiful pocket of north-eastern Italy, Venice, or Venezia as the locals call it, is actually comprised of 117 separate islands, with more than 400 bridges crossing the famous canals.
Summers are hot, with temperatures often climbing above 30 degrees Celsius, but in winter, the days are far cooler, with more frequent rainfall.
However, Venice never loses its appeal. Regardless of when you visit this unique city, you will be mesmerised by its one-of-a-kind charm.
How To Get To Venice & Getting Around Venice
If you are keen to explore Venice, the easiest way to arrive in the city is by plane. Venice is served by three major airports, so you shouldn’t have many issues in finding a flight to bring you to this stunning city.
The closest is Marco Polo Airport on the mainland, an airport serviced by numerous airlines. There is also Treviso Airport, 25 km from the city, that is serviced by a number of budget airlines, and San Nicolo Airport, a private airfield on Lido island that can handle charter traffic on its small grass airfield.
Bus and train services operate very regularly from Marco Polo and Treviso Airports to the bus terminal at Piazzale Roma and Venezia Santa Lucia railway station – tickets can be purchased within the respective concourses. A PeopleMover boat can also be caught from the Stazione Marittima, which will transfer you to Piazzale Roma within minutes. Water taxis are also an option, and a must for those arriving at San Nicolo Airport.
Trains run between Venezia Santa Lucia station and cities including Rome, Milan, Munich, Paris, Vienna and Moscow. If you are arriving by car, you will have to park on the mainland or at Tronchetto or Piazzale Roma car parks, the latter two of which can be rather expensive.
Once you are here, this is where the transport fun truly begins. Cars, buses and bicycles are not an option when travelling in amongst the Rialtine islands (the main islands). When you are there, walking and watercraft are the only two transport options, and the city can be easily navigated this way.
Given that Venice is a lagoon city, water taxis are a popular and efficient way of both arriving to the city, and for travelling from one side to the other once you are here - this is thanks to the incredible canal network that the city sits around. The centre of the city itself is modest in size, which makes it ideal for exploring on foot, too.
The Best Things To Do In Venice
In Venice you are never too far away from a world-famous landmark or location. Here are some of the highlights that every visitor needs to see.
The beautiful Rialto Bridge is one of the city’s most recognisable landmarks, and if you are in the city you should see it up close – the design is filled with class and elegance. At over 400 years old, it is the most historic of the Grand Canal’s four bridges and no trip to Venice is complete without crossing its iconic steps.
Another instantly recognisable structure, the Doge’s Palace is a spectacular building, once home to the rulers of Venice. Completed in 1424, the interior of the Gothic structure is as stunning as the arched, riverfront facade. Looking out towards the Grand Canal, the Palace couldn't be set in a more beautiful location, and walking its decorated walls is a great opportunity to unearth some of the city's rich and vibrant history.
If you love opera and classical music, consider purchasing tickets to see a performance at La Fenice, the city’s oldest opera house. With amazing golden balconies, a sky-blue ceiling and a collection of ornate chandeliers, this velveted theatre is arguably one of the best in the world. Just make sure to book tickets well in advance.
Peggy Guggenheim Collection
While classic Italian art can be found throughout Venice at places like the Doge’s Palace, Venice Academy Museum of Art and the House of Gold, more modern displays can be enjoyed at the Peggy Guggenheim Museum, which houses a vast collection of modernist and surrealist works.
Basilica di San Marco
Offering some of the finest examples of Italo-Byzantine architecture along with an array of religious iconography and mosaics, the Basilica di San Marco is one of Venice's most famous landmarks. Guided tours are offered throughout the day – and are highly recommended if you are looking to explore this fascinating Basilica in all its glory.
There are few sights as quintessentially Venetian as the city’s main waterway, the Canal Grande. Lined with stunning renaissance-period houses, this charming waterway tops many travellers' wishlists when visiting Venice – and once you have seen it, you will know exactly why.
The Gallerie dell’Accademia was created in the mid-18th century and is found on the banks of the Grand Canal. On its walls are some of the most famous paintings ever produced by Italian artists, with works from household names such as Bellini and Carpaccio.
What To Eat In Venice
Given its geographical location, Venice is a great place to try an array of seafood dishes. From sweet and sour sardines through to long thin noodles served in squid ink, the city has long made great use of the Adriatic Sea that lies in the east.
Aside from seafood, Venice also caters to travellers looking to sample the delights of Italy's mainland too. Meaning if you are looking to try a sumptuous pizza or delicious risotto, you won't be disappointed when visiting the City of Bridges.
In terms of drink, Venice is a great place to try some of Italy's finest wines, including Chianti, Montepulciano and Valpolicella. As well as this, Italy boasts some of the world's greatest coffee blends – meaning you can unwind in the amazing surroundings of San Marco’s with one of the finest espressos resting in your hands.
Where To Stay In Venice
If you are looking for somewhere to stay in Venice, visit us at San Clemente Palace Kempinski, a luxurious five-star resort on its very own private island, just a short boat ride away from the hustle and bustle of the main city. It offers a luxury spa, six outstanding restaurants and bars, and a private dock for those travelling with their own boat.
With its outdoor pool, tennis court and a state-of-the-art fitness room, as well as herb-therapy massage treatments, the island is the perfect destination to unwind in total relaxation.
San Clemente Palace Kempinski is just one of our luxurious hotels dotted across the world. To see the full list of Kempinski hotels, visit our destinations page.