Things to bear in mind
- Weather can be very wet in October but we never saw a single rain drop and had sun most days. Often days start cooler with fog which burns off later to get quite warm. So just imagine you are in Melbourne – layers work best. Also bring comfy shoes – you will be walking up and down steps more than you thought possible and a lot of the roads are cobble stones.
- Get out of town at the weekend to avoid irritating crowds and selfie sticks – try Murano, Burano, Padua or Bologna – easy by train or boat for a day trip.
- Visit during the Biennale period if you can (each year alternates art and architecture and usually covers May to November period). Much of it is free to see and at the very least you get into many old palazzos you would not be able to access otherwise and of course the architecture/art is cool too. I used WalktoArt for my Biennale focused week. They are excellent and Melbourne based. Thanks Bernie.
- Tick off a few once only things like a gondola ride (best with a lover I think so I skipped that one: and settled for the vaporettos and the occasional water taxi); a Bellini or coffee and this amazing cream cake speciality at Harry’s Bar (remember no photos allowed – this place is probably a precursor to a gondola ride; a outdoor drink at the B bar in hotel Bauer overlooking the Lagoon; a Tazza chocalata at the Florian Cafe on San March Square while the orchestra plays – a cup of liquid dark chocolate.. Take out additional mortgage to fund these things – but they should be done once. Best free thing is to walk around San Marco as the sun is setting or rising.
- Visit Peggy Guggenheim museum. Do the 8pm private tour of the main cathedral. About 20 people only and at one point all lights are turned off and the they come on so you can appreciate the mosaics (a memorable effect); the Secret Itinery tour of the Ducale Palazzo also worth it as they take you parts that no-one else sees including just under the roof and the prison cells thatCasanova was held in.
Some final pics of Venice below.
THE BUILDINGS – Piazza San Marco day and night, Rialto Bridge and Bridge of Sighs. Note this is not particularly crowded!