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Grand Canal

Gaze upon the stately homes of former merchants with a gondola ride down Venice’s longest canal.

Grand Canal: Our most recommended tours and activities

Venice: Grand Canal Gondola Ride with App Commentary

1. Venice: Grand Canal Gondola Ride with App Commentary

Feel the essence of Venice as you explore hidden and picturesque waterways near the Grand Canal with a gondola ride. Listen to in-app commentary to learn more about the city as you admire the sights. Start your activity by meeting the host, who will explain some curiosities about the history of gondolas and gondoliers. Get free access to an app with commentary of your itinerary on the gondola. As you enjoy the beauties of the Grand Canal, admire the marvelous Palaces such as the Peggy Guggenheim Collection Palace, the Gritti Palace, the Salute Church, the Punta della Dogana. Discover the worldwide-famous La Fenice Theatre and the Mozart House along the romantic and hidden waterways. At the end of your ride, enjoy a breathtaking view of the Saint Mark’s Basin with San Giorgio Island.

Venice: Grand Canal by Gondola with Commentary

2. Venice: Grand Canal by Gondola with Commentary

Explore the canals of Venice aboard a gondola. As your gondolier takes you down secluded ways and along the Grand Canal, enjoy live commentary from your guide. Learn about the city's palaces, churches, and attractions. Hear about local stories and the history of the gondola and gondoliers. During your journey, admire Desdemona’s House and Mozart’s House. You'll also pass by the magnificent La Fenice Theatre and the “De le Ostreghe” Canal. Continue on to the most important canal in Venice, the Grand Canal. Make your way towards the Salute Church, the Peggy Guggenheim Collection, and some of the stunning Venetian palaces that run alongside the canal, like Ca'Dolfin, Ca'Loredan, Grimani Palace, and many others. You will also see Punta de la Dogana and Saint Mark’s basin before making your way back to Campo San Moisè. At the end of the tour, you will receive a QR code to download a digital map with 2D images of Venice from the Middle Ages until the 18th century. With the shared option, enjoy a 20-minute walking tour from the meeting point as well as your 30-minute gondola ride. See the Biennale Cafe and the facade of San Moisè Church and learn about the history of the Venetian gondola tradition. You will also see Punta della Dogana and Grand Canal.

Venice: Traveling Opera in a Historic Palace on Grand Canal

3. Venice: Traveling Opera in a Historic Palace on Grand Canal

Experience Italian Opera in one of the most important Venetian-Gothic style palaces in Venice, Palazzo Barbarigo-Minotto. Within this historical venue, an innovative approach to opera has been conceived, with a formula that focuses on the interaction between the singers, the musicians, and the audience. This gives spectators the feeling of living Opera ‘from the inside’. This sensation is amplified by the clever 360-degree use of the ‘stage’ and by having the guests move through 3 different rooms within the Palazzo, one for each act of the show. The whole setting changes, not just the background. Reviving a tradition dating back to the late 1800s, this reimagining is brought to life by some of the finest lyrical voices, accompanied by a talented small group of strings and a piano: a virtuoso ensemble who performed in some of the most prestigious concert halls in the world.

Venice: Private Rialto Bridge Gondola Ride

4. Venice: Private Rialto Bridge Gondola Ride

Begin the 30-minute tour from the departure point at Bacino Orseolo, right in front of the famous Hard Rock Cafè and just behind Saint Mark’s Square. Follow smaller but unbelievably beautiful secondary canals such as Rio dei Barcaioli, where Mozart once lived, and Rio dell’Ovo to reach the Grand Canal. Enjoy the spectacular view of the Rialto Bridge from the water, and see imposing palazzi such as Ca’ Farsetti, the seat of the municipal government. Admire Palazzo Grimani, the largest building overlooking the Grand Canal and which now hosts the Court of Appeals. Continue down Rio San Luca where it passes Palazzo Manin, the residence of the last doge of Venice, Ludovico Manin, and today the Bank of Italy’s Regional headquarters building, before returning to end again at Bacino Orseolo. Start the 60-minute tour with departure from Bacino Orseolo, right in front of the famous Hard Rock Cafè and just behind St. Mark’s Square. Travel down smaller but beautiful canals, on an itinerary that includes Mozart's House and Grand Canal with the stunning Rialto Bridge. Pass under the famous Rialto Bridge and see the Rialto Market, where locals and visitors enjoy walking around and buy fruits, veggies and fresh seafood. Marvel at the many imposing Palaces, such as Ca’ Farsetti which hosts the Venice Mayor, and Palazzo Grimani, the largest building overlooking the Grand Canal. Cruise down to Rio San Luca with Palazzo Manin, former residence of the last Doge of Venice Ludovico Manin, currently home to the Bank of Italy. Move through enchanting small canals of the city center and end at the same departure point.

From Rome: Day Trip to Venice by High-Speed Train

5. From Rome: Day Trip to Venice by High-Speed Train

Set off on a day trip from Rome to explore Venice, Europe’s most romantic city. Enjoy a relaxing ride on a high-speed train, see the iconic St. Mark's Square, and cross the Bridge of Sighs. Meet your tour leader at Rome's Termini train station and board a high-speed train to Venice. When you arrive in the city, get your one-way pass for Venice’s waterbus transportation. Follow your guide onto a Vaporetto (waterbus). As you ride, enjoy your first glimpse of this magical water city. Head to St. Mark’s Square, the heart and soul of Venice. From the waterfront, marvel at the magnificence of the western façade of St. Mark's Basilica. Enjoy some free time to go shopping, sip a delicious Italian coffee, or get lost in the maze of insanely romantic alleys. Next, cross the Bridge of Sighs (Ponte dei Sospiri), which is among the city's most beloved and most Instagrammable locations. On the way back to the railway station, join your tour leader for a fantastic aperitivo, or Cicchetti, as the locals call it. Sit down for a mix of small savory side dishes, typically served in a bàcari, and wash it down with a Venetian Spritz. Return to Rome on the high-speed train with your guide.

Venice: Private Gondola Cruise for up to 5 Passengers

6. Venice: Private Gondola Cruise for up to 5 Passengers

Experience the romance of Venice aboard a traditional gondola for up to 6 people and enjoy a more intimate experience, exclusive to your group. Depart from the Campo San Luca at a time to suit you. Gondola rides are available by day and at night, when you can marvel at the monuments illuminated after dark. Journey along the legendary Grand Canal to see some of the historic buildings from the water. Venture down some of the smaller canals and get away from the tourist crowds. Pass the Gothic façades of palazzos at a gentle pace as your gondolier punts you through the historical center aboard the city's most traditional mode of transport. Glide back to the starting point for the end of your amazing gondola ride.

Venice: 30 Minute Private Nighttime Gondola Ride

7. Venice: 30 Minute Private Nighttime Gondola Ride

Enjoy the sound of silence and the gentle evening breeze coming from the water of Venetian canals while relaxing on a 30-minute gondola tour. Admire Venice at its best: coloured by the sunset and the reflections coming from the water. Take advantage of a private ride and choose who you would like to share it with up to a maximum of 5 people. Offer to the person you love the feeling of a romantic date on a gondola or share this thrilling adventure with your friends or family. Book in advance and schedule your tour when best suits you. You will save time and avoid negotiations on the spot. Make sure you arrive on time at the meeting point and get ready to start your tour! ITINERARY Starting from the Hotel Bauer gondola station, situated only 5-minute walk from St Mark’s Square, you will then ride the canals and follow the routes off the beaten path. Sit back and enjoy being surrounded by the play of lights on the water and the sound of the gentle swaying of the gondola when the sun sets. You will see the most well-known landmarks from the Grand Canal but you will also be fascinated by the lesser-known areas of the city at night.

Venice: Private Gondola Ride along Canal Grande

8. Venice: Private Gondola Ride along Canal Grande

Board an authentic gondola and take a romantic journey along the Canal Grande in Venice. See the historic sights along the shoreline as you glide down the canal. Set off from the departure point and admire marvelous palaces, such as the Peggy Guggenheim Collection and Basilica Santa Maria della Salute. Explore the secret waterways of Venice and soak up the city's atmosphere with your friends or your beloved. Travel by gondola close to St. Mark's Square, Fenice Opera House, Punta della Dogana and many other charming palaces. Pass under a small bridge as you discover the hidden spots reachable only by gondola. Enjoy commentary on your mobile app as you discover the stories and secrets of the city.

Venice: Food Tasting Tour with Cicchetti Dishes and Wine

9. Venice: Food Tasting Tour with Cicchetti Dishes and Wine

This tour is the perfect introduction to Venice, giving you an overview of the city’s unrivaled history and a taster of its world-famous cuisine. Your adventure begins in the Cannaregio neighborhood, one of the few remaining residential areas of Venice, known for being a popular after-work meeting spot for thirsty locals. Take a gentle stroll around and chat about its 1,000-year history and your local guide will offer suggestions on other things to see and do during your stay.   A ride in a traditional, stand-up traghetto gondola is next, as you cross the Grand Canal the way the locals do. Once in Rialto, the food tasting can begin! The first stop is at a small eatery near the market, owned by a group of young locals with a passion for experimenting with traditional recipes, giving them a modern twist. Expect dishes such as black ink calamari, polenta with seafood, or seasonal vegetables (served in elaborate dishes).  The second foodie stop is a historic spot that will help you better understand the Venetian culture of 'bacari' and how to enjoy this experience while you’re flying solo around the city.  A few secret, hidden spots near the Rialto are up next, which will demonstrate the importance of moving just one street away from the tourist hordes, to get a little slice of Venice to yourself. The tour will end at the iconic Campo San Bortolomio, which is surrounded by great restaurants and shops. Your guide will be happy to help you with recommendations for continuing the fun or with directions to help you back to your accommodation.

Venice: Shared Gondola Ride Across the Grand Canal

10. Venice: Shared Gondola Ride Across the Grand Canal

Share a gondola ride with up to 5 other people and a master gondolier through the canals of Venice. Glide gracefully through the mysterious canals of Venice on a peaceful 30-minute ride. Discover the quaint and charming canals of Venice that have different charms and appeals, which you'll experience on this tour. Float down the iconic Grand Canal, ride down minor waterways, and pass by the famous theater, La Fenice, to soak up the atmosphere.

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Other Sightseeing Options in Grand Canal

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What people are saying about Grand Canal

Overall rating

4.2 / 5

based on 23,053 reviews

The walking tour was around ~30min and was informative. The guide was very friendly and accommodating to both English and Spanish speakers in the group. The gondola ride was, despite other reviewer's experiences, a full 30 minutes! The gondolier was friendly and it was entertaining to hear him banter with the other gondoliers in the canals. However, you won't be getting the gondola to yourself (we shared with a Spanish couple). Overall, extremely worth it for its price.

An excellent tour, combining a short walk and guided commentary about Venice, together with a short (30 minutes) gondola ride. To do it at least once in a lifetime. Our guide Alessandra was particularly knowledgeable and pleasant to talk to. Recommended!

La breve introduzione iniziale molto interessante. La guida, Alessandra, particolarmente simpatica e preparata.

amazing performance. so up close and personal. fantastic event! easy to get to.

Fantastic tour. Gina our guide was great. Gondola ride also worth doing