Creating a two-day itinerary for Venice will allow you to experience the essence of this unique city, from its historical landmarks to its beautiful canals. Here’s a suggested itinerary to make the most out of your two days.
Venice is a city full of attractions, so we at Italo have drawn up a guide on what you can see in Venice in two days.
If you have decided to take a trip to the Lagoon, how to get to Venice by train consult this mini guide. We propose a two-day itinerary in “the Serenissima” to discover the best must-see sites. On foot, by gondola or by vaporetto, here is what to see in Venice and the must-see attractions for children. Ready for this 48-hours tour?
What to see in Venice in two days
- The best season to visit Venice
- How many days do you need to visit Venice?
- 2 days in Venice
- 1st Day in Venice
- Bridge of Sighs and Palazzo delle Prigioni
- Palazzo Ducale – The Doge’s Palace
- Piazza San Marco – St. Mark’s Square
- Basilica di San Marco – St. Marks’s Basilica
- Gondola ride or vaporetto tour on the Grand Canal
- Rialto Bridge
- House of Marco Polo
- Excursion to Murano, Burano and Torcello
- Riva degli Schiavoni
- La Fenice Theater
- Accademia Bridge and Gallerie dell ‘Accademia
- The Peggy Guggenheim Collection
- Santa Maria Della Salute
The best season to visit Venice
The best season to visit Venice is arguably during the spring months, from April to June. During this period, the weather is pleasantly warm without the sweltering heat of the summer, allowing for comfortable exploration of the city’s winding canals, historic architecture, and vibrant squares. The spring season also sees Venice come alive with colour, as flowers bloom and the city shakes off the chill of winter. This time of year avoids the peak tourist season, offering somewhat quieter streets and shorter queues for major attractions. Furthermore, the city hosts a variety of cultural events and festivals in spring, providing visitors with a unique glimpse into Venetian traditions and the local way of life.
How many days do you need to visit Venice?
To truly experience the essence of Venice, a minimum of 3 to 4 days is recommended. This allows sufficient time to explore the city’s most iconic sights, including St. Mark’s Basilica, the Doge’s Palace, and the Rialto Bridge, as well as to take a gondola ride through the picturesque canals. Allocating a few days also provides the opportunity to wander beyond the main tourist spots and discover the charm of Venice’s quieter neighbourhoods, such as Dorsoduro or Cannaregio, where you can appreciate the city’s rich history and culture at a leisurely pace. Additionally, this timeframe enables visitors to venture to the nearby islands of Murano, known for its glass-making, Burano, famous for its lace and brightly coloured houses, and Torcello, offering a glimpse into Venice’s early history. Each of these islands offers a unique perspective on Venetian life and heritage, making them worthwhile additions to your itinerary.
2 days venice itinerary
If you have only 2 days to spend in Venice, it’s essential to prioritise your visit to ensure you capture the essence of this enchanting city. Focus on the historic heart of Venice, starting with the iconic St. Mark’s Square, where you can marvel at the grandeur of St. Mark’s Basilica and the Doge’s Palace. A stroll along the Rialto Bridge and a visit to the bustling Rialto Market should also be on your agenda. To truly experience Venice, a gondola ride through its serene canals is a must, offering a unique perspective of the city’s architecture and charm. Allocate some time to simply wander through the maze of narrow lanes and bridges, discovering hidden gems and picturesque spots along the way. While your time may be limited, immersing yourself in the atmosphere of Venice and enjoying its culinary delights, such as fresh seafood and traditional Venetian dishes, will ensure a memorable experience. Prioritising key attractions and embracing the city’s ambiance will allow you to make the most of your two-day visit.
1ST DAY IN VENICE
You can dedicate the first day to the symbols of Venice in the world: from St. Mark’s Square with a visit to St. Mark’s Basilica and the Doge’s Palace to a romantic gondola ride on the Grand Canal passing under the Rialto Bridge.
|What to See
|How Long to Stay
|Bridge of Sighs
|Palazzo Ducale – The Doge’s Palace
|Piazza San Marco – St. Mark’s Square
|Basilica di San Marco – St. Mark’s Basilica
|1 hour 30 minutes
|Gondola ride or vaporetto tour on the Grand Canal
|1 hour 30 minutes
|Casa di Marco Polo
|1 hour 30 minutes
This schedule is flexible; for instance, you might spend less time at some stops or more at others depending on personal interest. The aperitif break is a wonderful opportunity to enjoy Venice’s café culture before heading to the Rialto Bridge and Casa di Marco Polo in the cooler evening hours. Dinner in Venice is a leisurely affair, so feel free to choose a place where you can relax and savor the local cuisine.
- Walking distance: about o,6 mi (1 km)
- Difficulty: very easy
- Walking time: one day (including all stages)
1. Bridge of Sighs
One of the bridges you must visit is the Bridge of Sighs, a one-minute walk from St. Mark’s Square. According to an ancient legend, if you ride in a gondola under this bridge, your love will last forever. Tradition has it that the sighs were those of prisoners crossing the bridge, knowing that it was the last time they would see Venice.
2. The Doge’s Palace
Step out of the Basilica and a few steps away, in the monumental area of St. Mark’s Square and near the pier, visit the Ducal Palace, formerly also the Palace and official seat of the Doge. It is also one of the symbols of the city of Venice and a masterpiece of Venetian Gothic.
It is open every day from 10.00 am to 6.00 pm, with last entrance at 5.00 pm. Admission to the Doge’s Palace is €25; this includes the combined itinerary through the Correr Museum, the National Archaeological Museum, and the Monumental Rooms of the Marciana National Library. For other museums to visit in Venice, here are the Italo top-three
3. St. Mark’s Square
Once you arrive by train at Venice Santa Lucia, the station that gives you the feeling of arriving in the city directly by sea, leave the station and start your tour of Venice by walking towards St. Mark’s Square. The walk takes about 20 minutes. If you like, you can also make a first stop at the Venice Ghetto: a unique atmosphere awaits you in the Jewish quarter of the Lagoon. You reach St. Mark’s Square, known as Europe’s living room. The square has a trapezoidal shape, is 170 meters long, is the beating heart of Venice, and is the only large space in the city that has the privilege of being called a piazza, while all other areas with this characteristic are called campi. After a few selfies among the pigeons in St. Mark’s Square a few steps away, visit the Clock Tower. The tower can be visited only by reservation and with a specialized guide.
4. St. Marks’s Basilica
Also in the square, do not miss the visit to St. Mark’s Basilica – a spectacular experience! It’s the city’s main church and Cathedral since 1807, also the seat of the Patriarch. It’s a testimony of the greatness of Venice, as well as being the temple of civil life and religious faith. It extends for a length of 76 meters and for a width of 62, while the central dome is 43 meters high. Inside you can admire the beautiful gilded Byzantine mosaics and immensely valuable works such as the Pala D’Oro, a table covered with sacred images in gold and precious stones that holds the relics of the Evangelist St. Mark and the Treasure of St. Mark.
The Basilica is open from Monday to Friday from 9.30 am to 5.00 pm and from 2.00 pm to 4.00 pm on Sundays and public holidays. The entrance to the Basilica is free, while the Museum of San Marco has a cost of €5, and reduced admission for eligible categories is €2.50. The visit to the Pala d ‘Oro costs €2, with reduced admission at €1. The visit to the Treasury of San Marco costs €3 and reduced admission is €1.50.
If you are tired and want to take a short lunch break before the third leg, here are our tips on where to eat in Venice while spending little.
5. Gondola ride or vaporetto tour on the Grand Canal
After the visit to the Doge’s Palace, it is time for am enchanting gondola ride or a tour of the Grand Canal. You can see it for free at any time of the day as it passes through the city, but the experience of sailing along it aboard the traditional gondola ensures a magic all-round experience of Venice – but the cost isn’t all that cheap, however. If, on the other hand, you want to delve into the history of Venice, don’t miss the Venice Historical Regatta: route and race trivia.
For a more affordable cost, on the other hand, you can board one of the vaporettos that travel the canal (line 1) to fully enjoy the views and glimpses that Venice gives you. If, on the other hand, you decide to admire it on foot and trek between the alleyways, you will get tired sooner or later, and the best remedy for that is to sample some great local wine in Venice’s best wine bars.
5. Rialto Bridge
If you opted for the gondola ride or the vaporetto tour, passing under the Rialto Bridge is a unique experience that leaves you speechless – as does crossing it on foot. Built between 1588 and 1591, the Rialto Bridge is one of four bridges that rise above the waters of the Grand Canal.
House of Marco Polo
The house of Marco Polo, situated in Venice, Italy, symbolizes the historic East-West cultural bridge of the late Middle Ages. Though the original building has evolved over centuries, its significance as the starting point of Marco Polo’s monumental journey to Asia endures. Marco Polo’s narratives in “The Travels of Marco Polo” not only unveiled the riches and diversities of Asia to Europe but also ignited a flame of exploration among many. Today, the site where his family once lived draws scholars, travelers, and history enthusiasts, keen to connect with the legacy of a man whose adventures paved the way for the mapping of the Silk Road and profoundly influenced European perceptions of Asian cultures. The legacy of Marco Polo stands as a testament to the human quest for knowledge and exploration
2ND DAY IN VENICE
Devote this second day of your Venice tour to a half-day excursion to the islands of Murano, Burano and Torcello and then move on to visit the Basilica of Santa Maria Della Salute. Then visit the Accademia Galleries, the Peggy Guggenheim Collection, and finish your tour at the Teatro La Fenice.
|What to See
|How Long to Stay
|Excursion to Murano
|Excursion to Burano
|Riva degli Schiavoni
|La Fenice Theater (exterior visit)
|1 hour 30 minutes
|The Peggy Guggenheim Collection
|1 hour 15 minutes
|1 hour 30 minutes
|Santa Maria Della Salute (exterior)
- Walking distance: about 3 km
- Difficulty: challenging
Walking time: one day (including all stages)
1. Excursion to Murano, Burano and Torcello
Start this second day with a half-day excursion to the islands of Murano, Burano and Torcello and depart from the Straw Bridge in front of the Bridge of Sighs. The cost is €20 per person, and the excursion lasts four and a half hours. It’s a spectacular experience – with an interesting boat ride, your first stop is a visit to Murano, the island of glassmaking, then you arrive in the colorful and characteristic Burano, and you finish the tour in historic Torcello.
Excursion to Murano and Burano: These are scheduled in the morning to ensure you have enough daylight to enjoy the colorful houses of Burano and the glass-making demonstrations in Murano. The time includes travel by vaporetto (water bus).
Ideally, there would be a lunch break in Burano or on the way back to Venice, depending on preference and timing.
2. Riva degli Schiavoni
The Riva degli Schiavoni is one of Venice’s most picturesque waterfront promenades, offering breathtaking views of the Venetian Lagoon and an authentic slice of Venetian life. Strolling along this bustling promenade, visitors can admire the historic facades, watch gondolas and vaporettos glide by, and explore the vibrant market stalls selling a variety of Venetian crafts and souvenirs. The area is also rich in historical sites, including the nearby Doge’s Palace and the Bridge of Sighs. For those looking to enjoy a meal with a view, Ristorante “Al Covino” comes highly recommended. This charming eatery offers a cozy ambiance and serves up a selection of meticulously prepared dishes that highlight the flavors of the region. With its focus on fresh, local ingredients and a carefully curated wine list, Al Covino provides a delightful dining experience that complements the beauty and history of the Riva degli Schiavoni.
After the excursion to the islands of Venice, you proceed to another important stop on this tour: take one of the ferry lines 12 or 14 to reach the Basilica of Santa Maria Della Salute. It was designed by Baldassare Longhena and is one of the best expressions of Venetian Baroque architecture. It is located in the Punta della Dogana area where you can admire the view of St. Mark’s Basin and the Grand Canal. If you visit Venice in November, do not miss Venice’s most genuine festivity – the Madonna della Salute.
3. La Fenice Theater
From Palazzo Venier dei Leoni, a less than 15-minute walk takes you to the last stop of this second day in Venice: your visit to the splendid La Fenice Theater, the city’s main opera house and one of the most prestigious in the world. It has been destroyed and rebuilt twice, and today is home to important operatic and symphonic seasons and the traditional New Year’s concert. Admire the stuccoes and golden decorations of the prestigious halls and discover the background and secrets of the Theatre and its protagonists, retracing its history from its origins to the present day. Also visit the permanent exhibition dedicated to Maria Callas and her years of activity in Venice.
The theater is open not only for concerts but also for visits every day from 9.30 am to 6.00 pm. For more information, visit the website teatrolafenice.it.
The schedule suggests an exterior visit due to time constraints; however, if you’re interested in an interior tour, you may need to adjust your schedule accordingly.
4. Accademia Bridge and Gallerie dell’Accademia
After visiting the Theatre, just six minutes away, visit the Gallerie dell’Accademia, an Italian state museum in the Dorsoduro quarter, at the foot of the Accademia Bridge. Here admire the best collection of Venetian and Veneto art and works by Tintoretto, Giambattista Pittoni, Titian, Canaletto, Giorgione, Giovanni Bellini, Vittore Carpaccio, Cima da Conegliano, Veronese, and other art forms such as sculptures and drawings, including Leonardo da Vinci’s Vitruvian Man.
The museum is open on Monday from 8.15 am to 2.00 pm and Tuesday through Sunday, from 8.15 am to 7.15 pm. The cost of the full ticket is €12; reduced admission for young people aged between 18 and 25 years is €2.
5. The Peggy Guggenheim Collection
The fifth stage on this second day, after the Gallerie dell’Accademia, is a visit to the Peggy Guggenheim Collection at Palazzo Venier dei Leoni, also on the Grand Canal and reachable in less than five minutes. Visit the most important museum in Italy for 20th-century European and American art created by American heiress Peggy Guggenheim, which houses paintings from various eras and artists, including a work by Picasso.
The Peggy Guggenheim Collection is open daily from 10.00 am to 6.00 pm and is closed on Tuesdays and 25 December. The cost of the full ticket is €16; reduced admission for seniors over 65 years is €14; for students up to 26 years, it is €9, and admission is free for children under ten.
6. Santa Maria Della Salute
At the end of the day reach the Basilica of Santa Maria Della Salute. It was designed by Baldassare Longhena and is one of the best expressions of Venetian Baroque architecture. It is located in the Punta della Dogana area where you can admire the view of St. Mark’s Basin and the Grand Canal. If you visit Venice in November, do not miss Venice’s most genuine festivity – the Madonna della Salute.
Visiting this iconic church’s exterior at night offers a serene experience to end your day. Interior visits would require daytime scheduling.
To Venice with Italo
The summer has arrived and the best solution for a quick and comfortable trip to Venice is by train! Italo offers many trains daily to and from Venice, connecting Bologna, Florence, Padua, Ferrara, Rome and Naples. Before buying your ticket, remember to always access your reserved area to take advantage of the Plus Offers, rates for subscribers only. If you haven’t already done so, you can sign up for the Italo Più Loyalty Program for free, get 5% off your first trip right away, and collect points with your trips to claim free award tickets. So arrive comfortably at the famous Santa Lucia station that is reached by crossing a bridge over the Lagoon and enjoy the suggestive view. With the station behind you and your suitcases still in your hands, you are plunged right in the heart of the city.
There are three ways to get around Venice: by vaporetto, by gondola or by water taxi.
With the vaporetti, managed byACTV (Azienda Consorzio Trasporti Venezia), you navigate through the city’s main canals and reach even the most distant islands of the lagoon. These public transportation vessels offer a spectacular view to appreciate the beauty of this city that has always lived a symbiotic relationship with water. There are four lines (3 standard and 1 occasional) and the cost of the ticket for an hour of navigation is €7; a daily ticket costs €20.
For gondolas, typical boats in the Venetian tradition, prices vary depending on the type of route you want to take and whether you opt for a collective or private tour. Charges start from €80 for a 40-minute ride and reach up to €180 for 180 minutes of “Venetian intimacy”.
Compared to gondolas, the cost of taxi boats is lower, and the most important operators are Veneziana Motoscafi and Consorzio Motoscafi.