With its beauty and uniqueness, Venice is a city that is envied by the whole world.
Being able to visit it all in 3 days is not easy , both because there are so many things to see, and because most of the attractions take a long time: San Marco, the Doge’s Palace, the Guggenheim Collection, it would take hours and hours. Not to mention the pleasure of walking through the streets and districts and going to bacari!
However, with some precautions and optimizing times and itinerary , you can be able to visit the must and enjoy the beauties of the city.
Here is the recommended itinerary to visit Venice in 3 days .

Consider purchasing a card: to save on the cost of individual attractions or on transport, we recommend the purchase of the Venezia Pass. Prices starting from € 35.00. Find out more

Day 1

  • Distance traveled : 1.4 km
  • Places visited : St. Mark’s Square Complex (Basilica, Bell Tower, Terraces and Doge’s Palace, 3-hour cumulative tour from € 79.00), Bridge of Sighs, Acqua Alta Bookshop, Rialto Bridge and gondola ride on the Grand Canal
  • Where to eat: Lunch at Osteria Da Carla (Get directions), Dinner at La Caravella Restaurant (Get directions)

First time in Venice
Let yourself be guided
: for a first approach to the city we recommend a walking tour of the city, to identify the landmarks and learn about stories and anecdotes

1 – San Marco Complex: Basilica, Campanile and Doge’s Palace
An itinerary in Venice can only start from the wonderful Piazza San Marco, in the homonymous district. The square is the real heart of the city , completely surrounded by beautiful buildings.
Spend the morning visiting the San Marco complex. Start with the Basilica of San Marco, the great Basilica of Venice(Mon-Sat 9: 30-17: 15, Sun 14: 00-17: 15; free admission). If its facade is a riot of beauty, wait until you see the inside: the ceiling is entirely covered with wonderful gold mosaics. Depending on the times, also consider a visit to the San Marco Museum.
Then visit the Palazzo Ducale, a masterpiece of Gothic art (every day 10: 00-18: 00; full admission € 20.00, reduced € 14.00). Dimora del Doge and the seat of the government of the Serenissima, today inside you can visit the Opera Museum, the courtyard and the Loggias, the rooms of the Ducal Apartment, the Armory and the Prisons.
Finally, admire the view from the Campanile of Venice, the symbol of the cityand basic model on which all the lagoon bell towers were then designed (every day 9: 30-17: 30; single admission € 10.00).

Watch out for queues, optimize times : Basilica and Doge’s Palace are by far the most visited attractions in the city … it won’t be difficult for you to imagine the queues! It is essential to opt for a guided tour, which includes the Basilica, Terraces and Palazzo Ducale. In this way you will skip the queues and optimize the time of the visit thanks to the guide, who will take you on a complete and in-depth tour in 3 hours. Info and prices here

2 – Bridge of Sighs
At the end of this morning of visits, reach another symbol of the city: the Bridge of Sighs. First of all, admire it from the Ponte della Paglia, on the Riva degli Schiavoni. It is just a few minutes’ walk from the Doge’s Palace. This is the busiest spot, so arm yourself with a little patience.
But, to take a different photo than usual , we advise you to reach the Memoria Ponte (Get directions), located just behind Piazza San Marco, near the Church of San Teodoro. Here there are usually very few tourists and the view is spectacular.

3 – Acqua Alta Bookshop
Then reach the very famous Acqua Alta Bookshop in Venice, a place out of time (generally every day 9: 00-20: 00; free admission). From the Bridge of Sighs you can quickly reach it on foot (650 m, 9 min).
This bookshop has now become a real attraction in Venice . Inside there are thousands of books, all stacked in the numerous bookcases present. But the strong point, which has also made it one of the most photographed places , is the small outdoor terrace where, climbing real stairs made of books, you can admire the canal. During lunchtime it is perhaps one of the best times, when there are fewer people than in the morning or afternoon.

Aperitif at Bacarando in Corte dell’Orso : on the way between the bookshop and the Rialto Bridge, stop at this bacaro, a typical place in Venice where you can have an aperitif accompanied by cicchetti, small bruschetta and tastings of typical local products.

4 – Rialto Bridge and gondola ride
Once you have admired the books of the Acqua Alta bookshop, reach one of the symbols of Venice : the famous Rialto Bridge! From the library it will take you less than 10 minutes on foot.
The one present today dates back to 1591, although a first bridge was built as early as 1250, and is the oldest of the four bridges over the Grand Canal . This is a truly unmissable stop, impossible not to take a photo here.
And to end this day, you cannot fail to enjoy a wonderful gondola ride on the Grand Canal, certainly one of the experiences not to be missed in Venice.. Hear the history of the city as you walk along the canal and admire the palaces and squares from another perspective.

Arrival in Campo San Moise : the gondola ride ends with the arrival in Campo San Moise. From here you can reach the La Caravella Restaurant, a wonderful place where you can taste traditional dishes such as Venetian fish soup. Get directions

Day 2

  • Distance covered : 2.1 km
  • Places visited : Basilica of Santa Maria della Salute (€ 4.00), Peggy Guggenheim Collection (ticket € 16.00) or Gallerie dell’Accademia (€ 12.00), Ponte dell’Accademia, Teatro La Fenice (ticket with audio guide € 13.00), Scala Contarini del Bovolo (admission € 7.00)
  • Where to eat: Lunch at Enoteca Schiavi (Get directions), Dinner at Bacaro and Trattoria da Fiore (Get directions)

1 – Basilica of Santa Maria della Salute
On the second day we advise you to start from the imposing Basilica of Santa Maria della Salute (Mon-Sat 9: 30-12: 00 and 15: 00-17: 30, Sun 15: 00-17: 30; full admission € 4.00, reduced € 2.00), one of the most beautiful basilicas in the city . It is located in the Dorsoduro district, located right on the tip and clearly visible from different points of the Riva degli Schiavoni. You can reach it on foot by crossing the Accademia Bridge or by vaporetto, the Salute stop (line 1).
The Basilica represents one of the best expressions of Venetian Baroque architecture. It was commissioned by the Serenissima as thanks to the Virgin Mother of God for having saved the city from the terrible plague of the seventeenth century. The works began in 1631 and was consecrated in 1687. If the outside is already really impressive, with its large dome, wait until you see the inside and the important works it houses : among the many, there are several paintings by Titian and the opera Le Nozze di Cana by Tintoretto

Reach Punta della Dogana : this panoramic point is located right on the tip of the peninsula where the Basilica stands, at the point where the Grand Canal joins the San Marco Basin. The view you will admire from here is truly spectacular, don’t miss it!

2 – Peggy Guggenheim Collection or Gallerie dell’Accademia
Photo of Airin. After the visit to the Basilica, for the second part of the morning you have two different options. In fact, nearby are two of the most important museums in Venice : the Peggy Guggenheim Collection and the Accademia Galleries.

Option a – Peggy Guggenheim Collection : and one of the four Guggenheim museums in the world (every day 10: 00-18: 00; online ticket € 16.00). Inside it houses the personal collection of Peggy Guggenheim and includes works of modern art: among the many artists we find Picasso, Braque, Duchamp, De Chirico, Kandinsky, Magritte and Pollock.

Option B – Accademia Galleries(Tue-Sun 8: 15-19: 15, Mon 8: 15-14: 00; admission € 12.00): this museum houses works by important artists from the fourteenth century to the Renaissance. Just to name a few, we find Tintoretto, Tiziano, Tiepolo and Longhi. Among the main works we certainly find Leonardo da Vinci’s The Vitruvian Man!

3 – Ponte dell’Accademia
Once you have concluded your visit to one of the two chosen museums, you certainly cannot skip the Ponte dell’Accademia, one of the most famous bridges in Venice . Easily accessible from both museums: from the Peggy Guggenheim Collection it is just 5 minutes on foot, from the Accademia Galleries about a minute on foot.
The Accademia Bridge is the southernmost of the 4 bridges of the Grand Canaland its name is due precisely to its proximity to the Accademia Galleries. But its popularity is mainly due to its position: from here you can admire one of the most beautiful views of Venice , as well as one of the most photographed points, where you can take the classic postcard photo with a view of the Basilica of Santa Maria della Salute.

Stop at Enoteca Schiavi : a real institution in Venice. Enjoy a glass of wine or a spritz accompanied by cicchetti and appetizers, prepared daily and with fresh products. There are no seats, you stand or sit on the low wall by the canal. Get directions

4 – Teatro La Fenice
Photo by Zairon. In the early afternoon reach one of the most beautiful places in Venice: the wonderful La Fenice Theater (every day 9: 30-18: 00; full admission € 11.00, reduced € 7.00). Located in Campo San Fantin, from the Accademia Bridge you can reach it by crossing Campo Santo Stefano (650 m, 8 min).
La Fenice Theater is a place full of magic, charm and history, where the greatest artists have performed . By taking part in the visit you will be able to discover some of its rooms, admire the prestigious decorations in gold and stucco and find out more about its history thanks to the audio guide. Finally, the theater also hosts a permanent exhibition dedicated to Maria Callas , an internationally renowned soprano, and to her years of activity in Venice.
If you want to spend a different evening than usual, the Teatro La Fenice has an extensive program of shows.

Buy your ticket in advance : the best solution to optimize times and enjoy the theater in peace and purchase your online entrance ticket with audio guide in advance. You will thus be able to avoid queues at the ticket office.

5 – Scala Contarini del Bovolo
At the end of your visit to the Theater, reach one of the hidden jewels of Venice : the marvelous Scala Contarini del Bovolo (every day 10: 00-18: 00; full admission € 7.00, reduced € 6.00 ). From the Fenice it is just a few minutes on foot (350 m, 4 min).
It is a hidden attraction among the narrow streets: if you don’t know where it is, you will hardly get there by chance! It is abouta wonderful and imposing spiral staircase , which will take you to the top of the tower, from which you can admire a splendid view over the rooftops of the city and the San Marco bell tower. It is becoming an increasingly popular place for tourists , especially for taking wonderful photos. Absolutely unmissable.

If you are ahead of the times and still have energy, go to the Terrazza del Fondaco , near the Rialto Bridge. The Fondaco dei Tedeschi is a wonderful shopping center full of high fashion shops, where you can access its large terrace. From here you will have a splendid view of the Grand Canal and all the roofs of the city (free admission to be booked on the official website)

Daily admissions with a quota: it is better to book the visit: in order to safeguard this place and still limit mass tourism, daily admissions to the Scala Contarini del Bovolo are limited and at certain times. To secure your seat at the best time, buy your admission ticket online in advance.

Day 3

  • Distance covered : 20.9 km
  • Places visited : excursion to the Islands of the Lagoon (tour of the islands € 20.00), Basilica dei Frari (€ 3.00), Campo San Polo, Jewish Ghetto and Cannaregio
  • Where to eat: Lunch at Taverna da Baffo (Get directions), Dinner at Ciccheteria venexiana da Luca and Fred (Get directions)

1 – Excursion to the Islands of the Lagoon (Murano, Burano, Torcello)
In the morning of this third day, discover the islands of Murano, Burano and Torcello, the most famous islands of the Venetian lagoon . You can reach them only by ferry, starting from the Fondamenta Nuove terminal pier (Get directions), located 500 m from the Basilica of Santi Giovanni e Paolo (7 min walk) and 850 m from the Rialto Bridge (11 min walk).
Depending on the time available, in a morning we recommend that you focus only on the first two. Murano is the largest and is famous for its glass tradition. Here you can take a tour of a glass factory or visit the Glass Museum. Burano, on the other hand, is mainly known for its lace tradition and its colorful houses: it is one of the 10 most colorful places in the world !

SEE ALSO : Visit to the islands of Murano, Burano and Torcello: how to get there and what to see

Book the excursion : the best solution to visit the islands, without having to worry about ferries and timetables, and with a boat excursion of the 3 islands, which also includes a visit to a glass factory in Murano and a lace shop in Burano. The 3 islands tour lasts approximately 5 hours, departing at 9:00 am. If you want to save time, opt for the 4-hour excursion to Murano and Burano.

2 – Basilica dei Frari and Campo San Polo
Source: wikipedia. Once back from the excursion, stroll through the streets of the Dorsoduro district until you reach the Basilica dei Frari, one of the most beautiful churches in the city (9: 00-18: 00; full admission € 3.00, reduced € 1.50 ). Fourteenth-century church, and characterized by a Franciscan Gothic style, with simple and clean lines avoiding, for example. gorgeous spiers. Inside you can admire important works of art , including two works by Titian and his tomb.
From the Basilica, in less than 5 minutes on foot, you can then reach Campo San Polo, the second largest Campo in Venice(the first and San Marco). Initially intended for cultivation and pastures, it was completely paved in 1493. Today there are many ancient buildings, such as Palazzo Tiepolo, Palazzo Soranzo, Palazzo Dona.

Alternative to the afternoon : if you are not interested in visiting the Basilica dei Frari, just opposite you can find the Leonardo da Vinci Museum, with reproductions of his works by da Vinci and inventions. Entrance ticket € 8.00.

3 – Jewish Ghetto and Cannaregio
Photo by G.dallorto. Finally, in the middle of the afternoon, reach the Jewish Ghetto, in the Cannaregio district, a place that doesn’t even look like Venicefor its architecture. Reaching it is very simple: from the Rialto Bridge, you just have to walk for 15 minutes among the narrow streets of the city, until you reach your destination.
The activities to do in the Jewish Ghetto are different. The heart of the area is certainly the Campo del Ghetto Nuovo, the best starting point for discovering the whole area. From here, if you have enough time, you can decide to visit the Jewish Museum of Venice (Sun-Thu 10: 00-17: 30, Fri 10: 00-15: 00; admission € 10.00, reduced € 8.00 ) or simply enjoy a walk through the streets. Alternatively, you can participate in a tour among the legends and ghosts of Cannaregio (starting at 5:00 pm, lasting 2 hours).

Evening in Cannaregio: this district is one of the hotspots of nightlife, of any kind. Dine on Venetian dishes and cicchetti at Luca and Fred’s Venetian Ciccheteria, and then spend the evening among clubs. But here is also the famous Casino di Venezia, if you want to enjoy an evening outside the box.

How much does a weekend in Venice cost ?
Venice is a very expensive destination . Entertainment, museums, restaurants, transport, not to mention accommodation cost. In short, we are above the national average for good or bad on everything. Fortunately, it is easy to reach both by plane and by train.
Speaking of accommodation, the San Marco district is the most central but it is almost unapproachable. To save money, get away a little and choose, for example, the Cannaregio district.
In Venice you will have to move on foot and by vaporetto : a practically obligatory choice. For water buses, we recommend that you buy the vaporetto pass, single trips have a high cost.
Finally, even for lunches and dinners the costs are high : to save money, avoid places that are too touristy or near the attractions and go for bacari, or the typical Venetian taverns.
Let’s see in detail the costs of a weekend in Venice:

  • Costs for eating : about € 55.00 per day per person (including breakfast, lunch, dinner)
  • Costs for museums and attractions : average price € 65.00 per day per person following the itinerary suggested by us
  • Transport : average price € 5.00 per day per person (for public transport, any taxis and transfers to and from the airport)
  • Hotels, accommodation and b & b : from € 70.00 per room – see the offers
  • Leisure : from € 35.00 per day per person (including snacks, coffee, aperitifs, drinks, …)
  • Total cost of a weekend in Venice : from € 550.00 per person (flights and / or transfers excluded)

Before leaving: useful tips

  • Avoid July and August : in this period the days are tremendously hot but what will mainly bother you is humidity. Also, in this period the city is full of tourists and visiting it could be complex. Prefer late spring or early autumn – find out more;
  • Get around on foot or by vaporetto : getting around on foot is the best situation but, at the end of the day, the many stairs in the city can start to be difficult. In this case, you can travel in peace with the vaporetto. We recommend the vaporetto pass;
  • Where to sleep: the city is divided into districts. San Marco is central but very expensive. For young people San Polo, Cannaregio and Dorsoduro. For families Castello. To save Castello, Dorsoduro, Santa Croce and Cannaregio – see the map of the districts here;
  • Wear comfortable shoes : essential for walking around the city and for tackling the numerous ladders and bridges present;
  • Go for bacari : that is the typical Venetian taverns where you can order wine or another drink accompanied by cicchetti, or small snacks and canapes with typical products.
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