By Adam Singleton
The enchanting city of Venice has long been a favorite destination for couples seeking a romantic getaway. Beautiful surroundings, famous landmarks, fantastic food and the inevitable gondola rides attracts many to this Italian city to bask in the laid back Italian way of life.
Venice also offers the unique experience of walking around a city that was built based on a canal system to move about, making for some interesting walking tours around this maze-like historic city.
Walking around the city is the best way to take in all of the unique architecture and character of Venice. A map is essential to tackling the winding streets of this city even though it will probably not protect against getting lost. But what better place is there to be lost in than Venice? Walking is also a great way to discover some of the lesser known neighbourhoods of this town, thus providing a more authentic experience. For those who want a true taste of Italy, those areas that lie off the beaten path also offer more authentic and tastier meals which cater less toward foreign visitors.
Visiting away from the tourist centre can also be a nice break from the numbers of visitors that Venice receives, especially during the summer months when the city is full and the weather is hot. A gondola ride to explore some of the bordering neighbourhoods is also a good excuse to hop on a boat as these rides get considerably cheaper the farther you stray from the main tourist area.
Any time of year that you find yourself in Venice, there are some must see attractions that you will happily brave the crowds to see. The Piazza San Marco is a large public square and serves as the main meeting place in the city. The Piazza is also the location of some more must see attractions such as St Marks Cathedral, the Doge’s Palace, the Campanile and several museums. Depending on what you are interested in seeing, you can choose to spend just a day touring the attractions of the Piazza or, if museums and cathedrals are your thing, you can happily spend more than a few days exploring all there is to see in this little space.
There are plenty more cathedrals and museums to see in Venice, and if you plan on visiting it is a good idea to book tickets in advance – especially if you are there during the summer months. Queues can be long and the weather will be hot, making standing in line pretty unpleasant. The same goes for booking a hotel in Venice during the peak season as accommodation fills up fast, especially at the hotels near the centre so it’s best to book early.
Venice is also a good place to see some of the other islands around Venice. The quaint towns can easily be seen on a day trip or you can even go to another country like Croatia by ferry although it is advisable to take more time than just one day. Venice is a great city to get a taste of Italy’s culture, but be warned, there is a great chance that it will only whet your appetite for more!