Sometimes called the City of Water, City of Bridges and City of Canals amongst a thousand other affectionate nicknames, Venice has long captured the imagination of all who venture to this stunning city. Made up of 118 small islands, split by canals and linked by bridges; Venice is a truly unique location – having been a dwelling for thousands of years.
The city is perhaps one of the world’s most important tourist destinations, welcoming guests from all around the globe. Inspired by the culture, history and beauty of the city; there are an average of 50,000 tourists to the city every day.
Unsurprisingly, the waterside location of the city has made Venice hugely popular with cruise fans wanting to explore the historic region. This popularity, and Venice’s unique and sometimes delicate infrastructure, has led to a number of cruise lines seeking ports further up the coast to respect and protect the city.
With so much to see and do in Venice, it can be difficult to decide how to make the most of a one night visit – so we’ve gathered some intel to help you plan an overnight stay to remember.
The Grand Canal is a major transport hub, tourist destination and city icon all rolled into one – making it a must-see during a trip to Venice. Taking a gondola ride down the two mile-long canal is perhaps the quintessential way to spend a day in Venice – and perhaps the best way to explore some of the city’s best canal-side architecture. Some of the most exquisite building facades of Venice can only be seen from the canal.
With many tourists descending on Italy purely for a chance to enjoy the country’s beautiful cuisine – beautiful fare certainly isn’t in short supply in this part of the world. If you’re salivating at the thought of servings of pasta and pizza, you may find yourself overawed at the sheer choice of restaurants and eateries.
If you are looking for real, authentic Venetian pizza, the Pizzeria Megaone is a must visit. Available in whole pizzas or huge slices with a selection of traditional toppings, the pizza gives you a real taste of Venice, close to the stunning Rialto Bridge.
The Veneto region of Italy is renowned for its beautiful sparkling wine, prosecco. Fittingly, one of the city’s best spots for a drink in the sun is Al Prosecco – located in the charming Campo San Giacomo all’Orio neighbourhood. The two chaps who run the bar know their beans when it comes to the grape – offering up a stunning selection of wine, not least the eponymous sparkling wine.
The hotel choice in Venice has been largely shaped by the city’s incredible history of architecture and love of art. With neo-gothic, byzantine, Egyptian and Latin Christian influences – the city’s waterways are rich with a veritable feast of different architectural styles.
Or personal choice would have to be the Gritti Palace – a hybrid of art and hospitality. Located on the Grand Canal, and one of the most eye-catching buildings for gondola passengers. The hotel offers a beautiful dining terrace, overlooking the waters – a beautifully tranquil place to watch the world pass you by.
In Venice it is very typical to enjoy breakfast in the form of an espresso and a small sweet treat such as a brioche or a donut. Often the closest Pasticceria (cake shop) is where the locals will get together to start the new day.
The Pasticceria Rosa Salva is one of the oldest bakeries in Venice – giving you the chance to try a huge selection of cakes, fritters, meringues, millefeuilles, rolls and sandwiches. This may seem a little excessive, but you can spoil yourself if you’ve just got one night in Venice.
Images sourced via Flickr Creative Commons. Credit: Heiner Adams, Maëlick, Class V