With its gondolas that gently rock lovers along the canals and the magic of a living city that floats on the water, Venice is one of the great romantic cities.
It is an unmissable experience to be enjoyed at least once in your life, perhaps with your partner on the occasion of an anniversary, a special event, or simply for a nice weekend out of town.
If you are thinking of organising your next trip to Venice, here is all the information you need to reach the city and orient yourself around it with ease.
Transport to Venice
You can get to Venice by car, train or plane.
If you decide to travel by plane landing at Venice or Treviso airport, opt for an express non-stop connection to the city.
Once you reach the Piazzale Roma stop, begin your exploration of the splendid Venice lagoon.
How to reach Piazza San Marco by public transport or on foot
One of the main tourist attractions and the heart of the city is Piazza San Marco, located in Venice’s most famous sestiere (district).
It can be reached using local transport from Piazzale Roma and the vaporetto offers a beautiful itinerary along the Grand Canal.
Piazzale Roma is in fact the starting point for the two vaporetto lines; choose the pier on the left facing the canal and the Rialto-Vallaresso direction.
The difference between the two lines is that Line 1 stops at all stops and offers you the option of getting off and further exploring areas of interest. Line 2, on the other hand, is designed specifically for tourists and reaches the destination directly. In any case, the vaporetto trip itself can be very pleasant, with innumerous architectural marvels to admire along the way.
The vaporetto first passes under the beautiful Constitution Bridge, then on to the Fontego dei Turchi, the Palazzo Vendramin-Calergi, Ca ‘Pesaro, Ca’ d’Oro, the city market, the Rialto Bridge, Palazzo Balbi, Ca ‘Foscari, Ca’ Rezzonico, Palazzo Grassi, the Accademia Galleries, Palazzo Venier dei Leoni and the Punta della Dogana da Mar (the old Customs House). The route ends in Vallaresso.
From this stop, walk along Calle Vallaresso and turn right. Once you reach Palazzo Correr you can access Piazza San Marco, right in front of the Basilica.
Line 1 takes about twenty minutes in total to reach the destination, while Line 2 takes about forty minutes.
Alternatively, you can walk from Piazzale Roma to Piazza San Marco in about half an hour. If you are not in a hurry, it will probably take you longer as there are so many reasons to dawdle along the way.
To find your way around, use a navigator and set the route on foot, or alternatively use a map of the city.
The walls of the historic Venetian buildings display the typical yellow or white signs with the street names that will help you get your bearings and show the direction to take for San Marco or Rialto.
Crossing Constitution bridge you will see the Santa Lucia Station on the left shortly after. From here you have a number of options: the quickest and easiest way leads to Strada Nova and is almost completely straight, but, considering where you are, what could be more beautiful than getting lost in the enchanting streets of Venice?
To follow a more winding route and admire the beauties of the city, from the Railway you can take the Ponte degli Scalzi to cross the Grand Canal, first reaching Campo San Giacomo dell’Orio, then Campo Santa Maria Mater Domini, and finally Rialto. Crossing the Rialto Bridge you reach Campo San Bartolomeo, from which you can then go through the Mercerie (the main shopping street).
These streets will take you to Piazza San Marco.
Piazza San Marco
Piazza San Marco is located in the heart of the city. It is in effect the only true piazza in Venice, the other squares are smaller campi or campielli and one piazzale (great square), Piazzale Roma.
The piazza is 180 m long and 70 m wide and its charm led Napoleon Bonaparte to call it the most beautiful salon in all of Europe.
The splendid square is surrounded by shops and museums. Visiting it you can also admire the basilica, the majestic Palazzo Ducale, the bell tower with the astrological clock and many other attractions. The whole pleasant atmosphere is enhanced yet further by the square’s orchestras offering accompanying entertainment.
The antique markets of Campo San Maurizio, right next to Piazza San Marco, offer a further attraction to this area. These markets are held five weekends a year and are definitely worth a visit.
Since 1970 they have been a paradise for collectors and admirers of antique pieces and objets d’art, including precious pieces from the period between the 17th and 20th centuries.