Let's Connect!


Wednesday, September 9, 2020

10 Cheap + 5 Free Things To Do In Venice

While we aren't traveling, we're trying to keep our wanderlust at bay by doing our own destination staycation date nights.  We're very adamant about being responsible travelers, and right now that means not traveling at all. We still want to travel though, so we've gotten creative. 

This gives us a great chance to start looking at things we want to do when it's safe to get out in the world again (and we're not bound by travel restrictions). Since we "went" to Venice last date night, I decided to pull together a budget traveler list for the city for your next trip. You'll probably spend a lot of money going on a gondola ride and eating decadent pasta and seafood dishes, so figure out what else to do to balance out your budget.

10 Cheap Things to See/Do

  1. St. Marks Basilica - There are a lot of churches to visit in Venice, many are free (donations encouraged), so why not visit the most famous? It's usually very busy and you will not have much time to see it all. You will pay a small fee to see the museums, which are highly recommended. You will have more time to visit these parts. Make sure not to miss the Pala d'Oro. 
  2. Pala d'Oro - Don't miss seeing this golden, bejeweled casket of St. Mark, located in the middle of the Basilica. Price for viewing is just 2 euros.
  3. Vaporetto Tour - This ferry boat is one of the best ways to see the city and other places. Rates are only €7.50 each way, but if you want to do more with it, purchase a day pass or a multi-day pass. 1-day passes are €20, 2-day passes are €30, and 3-day passes are €40, or a 7-day pass will run you €60. which saves you quite a bit. Below are some of the great areas you can visit that are included in your Vaporetto pass.
    1. Lido - Enjoy the beach while in Venice. This is an 11-km-long barrier island. Of course the beach is not the only thing there. More than 22,000 people live there, so check out these top activities.
    2. Burano - Spend a half or whole day on this sweet little island that's full of gorgeous photo ops. This is also where to eat better than anywhere else, because it's a fisherman's island. Check out what to this island has in store for you.
    3. Murano - If you've heard of Murano glass, then you already know some of what you're going to see. This island is more quiet and laid back, so you don't need to spend an entire day here, but it's still worth the visit
  4. Ca' d'Oro - Also known as Palazzo Santa Sofia, this palace on the Grand Canal is called the Golden House. The house has been turned into a museum, and you can tour the house and balconies, which give awesome views of the Canal. Admission is €6. 
  5. Scala Contarini - The snail staircase attached to the palace of Gioielli Nascosti di Venezia is free to see from the outside, but if you'd like to walk up them and also visit the exhibits, you'll have to pay an admission. It's just €7.
  6. Sample a bunch of gelato - There's no better way to cool off on a warm day than ice cream, but substitute gelato, which has a higher sugar content, and you'll enjoy a chill pick-me-up. Pair it with an espresso and pour over for an affogato. 
  7. Have coffee at Correr Cafe - Instead of sitting in an overpriced cafe in St. Mark's Square, have a coffee and snack at the cafe in the Correr Museum for quite a bit less, and still be able to people watch if you grab a window seat.
  8. Fenice Opera House tour - Tickets to the opera can be really spendy. If you aren't interested in going to one (I wouldn't blame you, because I'm not a fan of opera), or can't afford a show, for just €11, you can take a tour of this stunning building that dates back to 1792.
  9. Basilica Santa Maria della Salute - This church is special, as it was built by Plague survivers for the Virgin Mary, and has graced the skyline for over 300 years. The central dome inside is astonishing and covers six side chapels. Don't forget to take time to look down as well, because the floors are equally gorgeous. Admission fees are just €4. 
  10. Burano Lace Museum - Located in (surprise!) Burano, the lace museum has over 100 pieces of lace to showcase the amazing handcrafted patterns done by artisans. Learn all about the history of lace-making. The museum is located within the lace school, which has revived this age-old tradition that was on its way to becoming lost. While not for everyone, I still feel like €5 for admission is a pretty good deal.

5 Free Things to See/Do

  1. Rialto Bridge + Market - Though these two aren't right next to each other, I think they go pretty well together. The Rialto Bridge is the most iconic bridge in Venice, which amazing views of the Canal and the gondolas. Less than 1/4 mile away is the indoor market, where you can browse some of the local fresh foods and maybe pick up food for a picnic or to have in your room, to help you save a bit on going out.
  2. Museo della Musica - This deconsecrated church is now a museum of musical instruments and Baroque music.
  3. Walking tour - Like many cities, Venice also has free walking tours of the city for tourists. Make sure you tip well if you enjoyed your tour though, because these guides work for tips, plus it's just polite. It'll still be much cheaper than a traditional city tour.
  4. Orsoni Colour Library - If you are interested in Venetian glass, the Colour Library has the only glass oven still operating in all of Venice, while visits are free, you do have make reservations in advance, so make sure you plan ahead, because they are only open certain days. You'll also need to catch a boat to get there.
  5. Libreria Acqua Alta - This library has used, out-of-print, and antique books, plus furniture made out of books. Because it has suffered constant flooding, it has resorted to using creative shelving, like gondolas and canoes and bathtubs, to hold their selection of second-hand tomes.

Bonus tip for a budget visit: Instead of spending a small fortune on a regular gondola ride, take a traghetto instead. That is basically a water taxi that crosses the Grand Canal, but in a larger gondola to hold more people. This will only cost 2 euros per person. 

I hope everyone is keeping safe and happy and trying to channel their travel dreams in other ways. Don't forget that if you're still working, this is the perfect time to save for your next big trip, whenever that may be. A lot of people are planning overseas trips for the beginning of the year, but I wouldn't look any sooner than July or August. For more pandemic and staycation ideas, you can scroll through the blog archive (on the right sidebar) or check out my Coronavirus Travel board on Pinterest.

Where will your next dream vacation take you?

No comments:

Post a Comment

Pin It button on image hover