Venice is undoubtedly a destination that most people know, through photos or even films. But as we walk through the exit door of the station, the city takes on a whole new dimension. We are immersed in it, directly: in front of us, a canal and a host of boats that circulate!
Here are some tips on what to do and visit in Venice.
How do we get there?
The ideal is to arrive at San Lucia station. Thus, you will be directly close to the heart of the city, without struggling with buses. If you arrive by plane, a shuttle bus takes you directly to the station.
Which route should you choose?
Of all the advice that the people of Venice have told us, the same thing kept coming back: get lost in the streets. And it’s been verified! Above all, don’t use the main axes, except when it’s really necessary. The streets are crowded and lined with tourist shops. Take the parallel streets, much quieter and more relaxing, to appreciate the city.
Which neighbourhoods to visit in Venice?
The Jewish Quarter
When you leave the main san Lucia station towards the canal, take on your left, without crossing the deck degli Scalzi. You will follow a slightly busy street, the Rio, and once the first bridge has passed, walk along the canal on the left and start wandering the streets of the Jewish quarter. In the centre of this popular district is a large square, el Campo Del Ghetto Nuovo. When we passed, children were playing under the gaze of the elders, sitting on the benches, making the atmosphere joyful and catchy. If you’re looking for a ride away from the noise and the crowds, go to this area!
There are also local bars, where you can find the famous “Spritz”, an orange drink popular in Italy. You can find them everywhere, but in other more touristy corners, bars tend to give a cheaper Spritz to tourists, less connoisseurs.
For the record, the word “Ghetto” comes from the old Venetian dialect “Getto Vecchio” which was used to describe the district of the old foundry.
In 1516, the Jews of Venice were ordered to live among themselves in this district. The word has thus drifted to take on the meaning we know today.
The Dorsoduro district is also a great place to avoid the crowds.
The multitude of small streets is very appreciable and takes you to the “Zattere” docks from which you have a view of Guidecca Island. Along the quays, you can then push up to the Accademia Bridge, which will take you a little further to the famous San Marco Square, in the district of the same name.
You can also find the last gondola-making workshop in Venice. We didn’t have time to spend there, but he was warmly advised by several people! It’s called “Squero di San Trovaso”, it is not visited, but you can appreciate their work by passing by.
La Liberia Acqua Alta (Campiello del Tintor)
This bookstore is a real surprise! I had already spotted it by chance during my first stay, and it was just as random that we fell back on it. You can find old books of all kinds, ranging from encyclopedias on Venetian art to old Mickey albums dating back decades. But that’s not all. The originality of this bookseller is in particular its décor, totally atypical! Between the mazes formed by piles of books, you can find a gondola, serving as a large book tray, or stairs made up of large encyclopedias. If you climb these steps, you will enjoy a nice little view of the canal that passes right next to it.