Venice
6.5 hours (incl. break)
Varies
Max 20

Highlights

  • Make the most of every moment on our Venice in a Day Tour, checking all the can't-miss sights (and a few hidden gems!) off your list in just one day.
  • 8:30 AM tour only: Enjoy skip-the-line entry at St. Mark’s Basilica for more time to explore its incredible architecture and art.
  • Skip the line at the Doge's Palace, the heart of politics and power in Venice, and uncover centuries of history within its storied walls.
  • Relish in an only-in-Venice moment on a gondola ride through the heart of the city, included in the price of your tour.
  • Explore Venice in a group of 20 people or fewer, with an expert local tour guide on hand to tell you the stories behind top attractions and hidden palaces alike.

Tour description

Explore the hidden beauty and fascinating history of Venice in one day on our small group tour.

Please note: Only the 8:30 AM tour includes entrance to St. Mark's Basilica. The 8:45 AM tour will see the Basilica from the outside. It is not possible to bring large backpacks on the tour.

Your day starts as all great days in Venice do: with a stroll through the quiet back streets and bustling markets of the city. You’ll meet one of our expert local guides and group of 20 guests maximum for an intimate guided stroll.

Starting early, we'll get to the Rialto Bridge before the crowds descend to admire its incredible marble architecture before moving on to the bustling Rialto market. The chefs and nonnas of the city are shopping for the day's freshest ingredients, so there's no better time for a stroll through the stalls. Your guide will introduce you to a few of our more unconventional ingredients and share how (and why) Venetian cuisine differs from the rest of Italy’s. At the market and throughout your Venice in a Day Tour, they’ll give you tips on what and where to eat while you’re in town.

Our tour continues into the atmospheric neighborhoods of the city, across countless bridges and quiet piazzas. Along the way, you’ll see the childhood home of Marco Polo, the Venetian merchant who first spoke of China; duck inside San Giovanni Gristosomo to see paintings by Venetian masters Bellini and Sebastiano del Piombo; and discover how the “Church of Miracles” got its name—plus so much more! We consciously take you away from the beaten track and to our favorite local spots so you get a taste of the real Venice as well as the big name attractions.

Enjoy a gondola ride along the Grand Canal and quieter back canals of Venice.

We couldn’t say we were covering the best of Venice in a day if we didn’t include a gondola ride on our tour. After your walking tour, you’ll meet a local Venetian gondolier and your group will be split into different gondolas (maximum five people per gondola) for a ride along the Grand Canal and into the quieter back canals of the city. Duck under little bridges, admire ornate palaces, and watch the world go by as you sit back and enjoy this quintessential Venetian moment. With independent Venice gondola rides costing around €80/hour, this half-hour ride, included in the price of your tour, is a bargain.

Discover the top two sights of Venice—St. Mark's Basilica and the Doge's Palace—on our skip-the-line tours.

We’ll give you a short break after your gondola ride and meet back at St. Mark’s Square for the next part of our adventure. If you book the 8:30 AM tour, you'll skip the line into St. Mark's Basilica as your guide points out the features of this incredible church. If you book the 8:45 AM tour, your guide will pause outside the Basilica to explain how its east-meets-west architecture came about and the shady means by which the relics of St. Mark came to rest here.

Our day doesn’t end there, though. With pre-reserved, skip-the-line tickets to the Doge’s Palace, we’ll walk straight inside. It’s here that you’ll feel the most benefit for having a local tour guide. Home to some of the city’s most impressive artworks and architecture, Palazzo Ducale is so much more than something pretty to look at. Although it certainly is that, it’s also the historic heart of Venice and a repository for the best stories, from Casanova’s prison break to the Duke whose face was dramatically blacked out of every portrait and painting.

With our expert guides on hand to tell you all the juicy details, plus small groups so you can easily ask all the questions you want, your Doge’s Palace tour is guaranteed to be a highlight of your Venice visit.

Please note that this description is an example and your experience may vary depending on the season, day of the week, and group size. Regardless of where your tour goes, you always have an excellent experience.

Sites visited

  • Rialto Bridge
  • Rialto Fish Market (closed on Mondays)
  • Fondaco dei Tedeschi (from outside)
  • House of Marco Polo (from outside)
  • Church of Miracles (from outside)
  • Campo San Giovanni e Paolo
  • Scuola Grande di San Marco - Venice's main hospital (from the outside)
  • Bronze Equestrian monument of Bartolomeo Colleoni by Verocchio
  • Campo Santa Maria Formosa
  • Arch of Paradise
  • Church of San Zulian (from outside)
  • Gondola ride (30 minutes)
  • 8:30 AM tour only: Skip-the-line access to St. Mark's Basilica
  • St. Mark's Square
  • Doge's Palace
  • Bridge of Sighs
  • New Prisons

Included

Verified guest reviews

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Tyler

Jun 05, 2024

Our guide, Chiara, was outstanding. I have taken a half dozen Walks tours and they are always exceptional. This one was a very experience and our group of 11 (adults and teens) all enjoyed our guide and the tour. She was so knowledgeable and showed us all the highlights. Highly recommend for anyone who wants to understand the history of Venice and see the key sites. Bravo!!

Michael

May 25, 2024

Walks did a fantastic job with this tour - from online registration, pre-tour logistics, the tour and our tour guide. Walks limited the tour to at most 20 people. This was a perfect size. We saw some for groups with 50 people. Our tour guide, Mose, was very knowledgeable and had a good sense of humor.

Joseph

May 09, 2024

Pamela was great, thank you!

Corinne

May 08, 2024

Our guide was very knowledgable but the tour of St Marks and thr Doge’s palace were too long.

Kelly

May 03, 2024

We had so much fun with Matteo on our Venice day tour. He was an exceptional guide - funny, knowledgeable, and he interacted fantastically with everyone in the group. Would not hesitate to recommend Matteo or this tour in Venice.

Know before you book

From $157
Free Cancellation