Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Top Tips for Visiting Venice

When traveling to Venice, I honestly believe that there are a few tips one should at least take into consideration. My short time in Venice was an amazing experience and before I left, I read up about the dos and don’ts when traveling to the area…here are mine.

1. Unless you want the “romantic,” “Venetian” experience, don’t take a gondola ride

If you’re on a tight budget, take the water taxi and ride down the canal and see the beauty that is Venice. Gondola rides can be extremely expensive, going high above $100 depending upon the time of day, number of “riders,” and the extent of what you want for your experience (ex: gondolier, accordion player, singer, etc…)

2. If you buy anything, buy an authentic mask and Murano glass

I used to collect porcelain masks when I was younger and although I no longer display them along my walls, I still have a bit of an eye for unique-looking masks. All I heard while in France was that if I was visiting Venice, one thing I had to buy was a mask, but not just any mask. No, I had to find a shop where someone was actually making them, and so I did. Surprisingly, the mask I bought cost me only 15 euros, so it didn’t break the bank.

Also, make sure to buy some Murano glass. We didn’t get a chance to visit the island of Murano; however, we did manage to find a wine stopper and a pair of beautifully made earrings for my mom. Although a bit pricier, it was well worth the price as my mom now wears those earrings more than any others.

3. Take galoshes and an umbrella

For those of you who read my previous post about wearing galoshes while in Venice, this does not need further explanation.

4. Go with the Flow

When visiting a local restaurant, my sister and I were treated…well, let me put it this way, because we were not Italians, we were not worthy of “top notch” service. However, I knew going into this that Italians are much more laid back and do not hurry when it comes to things like bringing the check. As Americans, we are so accustomed to getting things done as fast as possible and to be honest, it is nice to be able to just sit back and relax for a while.

5. Do not visit in July

According to some of the tour guides, the months of July and August are the most brutal when it comes to heat. Now, my sister and I visited in June so the temperature was ideal. While we were there, we visited Doge’s Palace and according to the guide, they do not do a lot of tours in July because of the severe heat.


Anonymous said...

Great tips! In reference to "go with the flow" I think that is my favorite thing about European countries. Granted there isn't a schedule to follow, I love to just sit and enjoy the surroundings. I also love the Venice specific things to buy!

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