It’s hard to put this beautiful little city into words. From canals at every corner to the gondolas that cruise them, you can happily lose yourself in Venice for hours on end.
Full of exciting history and trades such as glass-blowing and lace-making, not to mention a food culture that is both traditional and innovative, Venice is somewhere to mark for a visit in 2018.
A cute Venetian café, known for its vast range of pastry delights! Stop by and sip your brew of choice (I highly recommend a Marachino; a delicious little espresso with milk froth and cacao!) and take your pick from a beautiful range of pastries, chocolates, and fruity treats. Perfect for a mid-morning pick–me-up before the crowds hit.
Chocolate heaven – two words to aptly describe this fabulous chocolate café or ‘cioccolateria’, Vizio-Virtu. The specialities here (a MUST try) are the Classic Dark Hot Chocolate – a decadent, indulgent #wortheverytaste delight, and the range of dark chocolate-coated candied fruits – the figs and apricots in particular are delicious.
Osteria Antica Adelaide
A hidden little restaurant at the edge of the Cannaregio neighbourhood celebrating local, seasonal, fresh ingredients used in a traditional, yet modern menu! I recommend trying the exciting pasta dishes made with flours such as buckwheat and kamut – an unusual find in Italy, and a funky twist on a traditional style.
The Venetian Neighbourhoods
Venice is a city to be seen on foot, full of narrow enticing streets, with canals and bridges separating each. You can easily take it all in over a couple of days – must see regions on the mainland include San Marco, Cannaregio, and Castello.
Cannaregio is my favourite – home to the first Jewish ghetto, it’s full of busier tourist streets as well as quieter areas with authentic Venetian restaurants and cafes.
Murano, Burano and Torcello are the three main islands just off the Venetian mainland. I wouldn’t consider a visit to Venice complete without a trip over to Murano and Burano (and the more rural Torcello if you have an extra day).
Murano is known for its glass-blowing trade, while Burano is famous for lace-making. On Murano, you can visit glass-blowing factories, take a tour to see the trade in action, and afterwards stroll the streets lined with endless shops and galleries show-casing incredible glass creations – from jewellery to sculptures to fridge magnets!
Burano, my favourite of the three, is known for its beautifully colourful houses, bakeries, and stores selling handmade lace items.
Market Magic at Ponte de Rialto
Who doesn’t love a good market? Rialto Market is the place to be in Venice – popular among tourists and locals alike, it’s centrally located right beside the famous Ponte de Rialto. Stop by to take in the atmosphere, sights and scents – you’ll find locals picking up fresh vegetables, spices, fruits and fish. Treat yourself to authentic Italian spices and herb mixes you can take home to jazz up your pasta night.
Panoramic Vibes From The Top of the Fondaco Building & San Giorgio Maggiore Tower
The panoramic views from the top of the T Fondaco De Tedeschi building and the San Giorgio Maggiore bell tower cannot be missed. Grab a 5 minute vaporetto across the water to San Giorgio Maggiore Church, and take a quick elevator to the top of the tower inside. Many say this is the best you’ll see of Venice!
The Fondaco building is located right beside Ponte de Rialto, and is home to a VERY plush department store full of labels you would need a year’s wages to afford. Happily, booking a slot online to see the view from the top is both free and easy to do. You won’t be disappointed, trust me.
Find it: Fontego dei Tedeschi, Calle del, Rialto Bridge, 30100 Venezia VE, Italy
Find it: San Giorgio Maggiore, 30100 Venice, Metropolitan City of Venice, Italy
Home to easily the best coffee I had in Venice, Torrefazione is a very small little pit-stop located in the chilled out Canareggio region, where the layout is in the very classic Italian style of coffee drinking – order, sip it at the counter, then head on your way. You can also ask them to grind the beans of your choosing for you, and bring them home for your own brew!
Find it: Sestiere Cannaregio, 1337, 30121 Venezia VE, Italy
Gelato At Grom
What is a trip to Italy without gelato? Grom is a gelato chain known for very authentic gelato, plus a vast array of flavours, with vegan-friendly options too. I highly recommend the extra dark chocolate vegan gelato – the dairy-based salted caramel flavour also rates very highly!