My best advice for Venice, (after you see all the iconic sites) throw away the map and GET LOST, you're on an island, you will eventually find your hotel. The magic is in the moment--get lost in the moment.
PLEASE don't take that cookie-cutter tour of Venice, OR of anywhere in Italy. We work with fabulous on-location teams that are there for you every step of the way. We know locals, Venetian-born and bred that cannot wait to show our travelers the Venice guidebooks often overlook.
Maybe you have visited Venice on a tour before, come again and get a closer look--we will help you see the CITY ON WATER with new eyes!
I share one memory of my Venice trip below, but each trip we plan is YOUR trip. You may like some, all or none of the things I liked about Venice. We find out about YOU and plan the trip to fit your interests best.
Many guidebooks or travelers say skip the gondola ride, you won't hear that from me, I'm not sure if we would have splurged on the serenade gondola ride if it hadn't been a special occasion, BUT, I'm sooo glad we did. It was so relaxing drifting along quiet alleys and seeing Venice from a completely different perspective. This was definitely my top EXPERIENCE in Venice.
Click this video to experience a magical moment in Venice
We all need to laugh at ourselves sometimes. I will share a little funny about my well planned adventure BEFORE I HAD on location peeps . . . a hilarious start to our first night in Venice felt somewhat like our adventurous "Road to Hana" (but that's a story for another day). First, we took vaparetta going in the opposite direction and rode around the island for 45 minutes. We debarked at Piazza San Marco, thinking it was closer to the meeting point than it actually was. We walked through a maze of alleys--we could see where we needed to be but couldn't get there (I tried to cut through a hotel kitchen with no success). We finally arrived at San Giglio for our Sunset Gondola ride so thankful they had waited for us.
We boarded with the gondolier and then to our surprise two guys joined us. We were thinking "this is supposed to be private". We assumed the gondolier was also the singer, but turns out that's only in Vegas. The extra guys were our singer and guitarist - YAY!.
We sailed though the quiet canals listening to the sweetest and most passionate serenade you could imagine (or just listen -link above). We felt like we were literally the only people in the city . . . to say it was a great way to celebrate our 27th anniversary is the understatement of the century--when you thought it was a dream come true, it just kept getting sweeter with each passing moment! The singer was SO into his song --so passionate about his music, it was a beautiful Italian ballad so I'm not sure of the words, I just know it was beautiful and heartfelt, especially with the chiming church bells in the background. There are no words to describe the overwhelming emotions from ALL OF US--priceless memories!
I was mesmerized with the many canals, dinner Al fresco, getting caught in the rain as we wandered through the maze of narrow alleys in San Croce before finding the Frari Basilica; drinking hot chocoloate in the mornings at my hotel while watching the gentile lapping of the water against the steps; the BRIDGES, I could never get enough of the ornate bridges crossing the quiet canals; the food . . . fresh, reasonable prices and delicious--it was my first of many pizzas in Italy. I do need to return to try the Venetian specialties, but Oh THE PIZZA. And the wine. And the gelato. Did I mention pasta?
Water . . . it is so serene. Aren't you ready to plan your trip to the City on Water?
We would love to give you a world of memorable experiences.