City Guide

It’s nearly impossible to compete with.  A gondola ride on the lagoon with my love, a strong macchiato, an afternoon spritz, and ENDLESS pizza and gelato . . . I’m very fond of it all!  Venice is such a special place!  Unique to any other city in the world, it’s weathered and rare and incredibly beautiful!  Untainted architectural heritage, world-class museums, churches, and galleries, I never tire of going. While this was my third time to wander this waterfront city, it was Madison’s first.  I could not wait to show him all my favorite spots A N D discover new ones together!

Venice is made up of over 100 islands.  Most of our time was spent strolling over one beautiful bridge after another, wandering from palace to piazza, and eating and drinking along the canals. Mornings start with a strong coffee, standing at the counter of a favorite local café, picking up pastry for later.  Lunch is typically light fare and cocktails start there, or shortly after, with the golden hour in a tiny wine bar along the canal where you can snack and watch the sun go down. Dinner is usually pile of handmade pasta, a loaf of fresh bread, and some sort of delicious oil dusted with fresh herbs.  We dined on dishes that haven’t been changed in decades.

This last trip was in mid June (and in the midst of tourist season), but the weather was BEAUTIFUL – eighty-five and sunny with a dreamy island breeze, and we found our way to every view we wanted and ate and drank plenty, no matter the crowds!


An amazing cocktail bar that is known for their Bellini. We ended up popping in late night for food.

A cute wine bar with an outdoor patio that we loved. We did this pre-dinner one night and had small bites and vino.

Not ashamed to admit it- we visited three times during our trip! It is my GO-TO gelato place! Best Stracciatella I’ve ever had!!!

Rain ran us straight into this place one night and we were so glad it did. There was an amazing ambiance in the garden under the trees and stars, where we shared a delicious pizza.

Truth – it’s pretty crowded but totally worth the effort. We woke early and got there around 7 am one morning, and were able to grab some shots with few people around. Really stunning historic spot!

Beautiful, Beautiful Renaissance Art! This 16th century art museum only has 2 rooms so it won’t take long. Favorite part- 50 amazing Tintoretto paintings!


A birds-eye-view of everything, this is absolutely THE best view of the city! Again, it’s worth waking early, queues get long later in the day.


This famous and VERY beautiful bridge is in tons of photographs of Venice. Be sure to make the walk to the middle of the bridge for the full view of the Grand Canal!


Rise early to avoid the crowds! This is a central spot in Venice, surrounded by tons of beautiful Venetian buildings and loads of great cafes and shops. I bought an amazing Italian leather bag and passport case that I love!


A cute and incredibly charming fisherman island, Burano somehow feels different than every other island. Technicolor houses are loud and bold while the vibe is quiet and more peaceful than other parts of Venice. Note-its far from the main island but so worth the trip!


One of the most famous symbols of Venice. Another tourist spot, but a must see! Amazing clock tower, AMAZING views, Totally worth the wait in line.


My very favorite way to see the city!!! Winding in and out of all the canals, it’s a private tour of the city from the water. We did this twice during sunset . . . so incredibly romantic and worth the price! There are tons of companies that offer rides so look around for the best deal, plus most hotels with make arrangements for you.

This dream-spot is where we stayed! A classic Venetian hotel just far enough away from the center of Venice with the most amazing old world elegance, and balconies that overlook the lagoon. The huge pool has ocean views, and we did a couples massage at the incredible spa that remains our favorite one to date!

On it’s own private island, the hotel grounds include three dining options, a pool, and a breathtaking 15th century church.

A 40 acre island 20 minutes from Saint Mark’s, the estate has a long list of amenities- an amazing spa, award winning restaurants, private gardens and pools and, most importantly- privacy.  There are hardly any crowds if you want something more tucked away.

This is where the Clooneys spent there wedding night! This is worth a day visit even if you aren’t staying there. It’s on the Grand Canal and has the most beautiful painted ceilings.