Venice is renowned for its breathtaking views of beautiful canals and bridges, but Marco Polo has discovered that there are many more reasons to visit this picturesque city… and it can be done on a budget!
Food & drink
Trattoria Cea – a simple, friendly trattoria with tables outside and very reasonably-priced risottos, pizzas and fish. Closed Sundays. Campiello Stella, 5422a | Tel. 04 15 23 74 50 | Stop: Fondamenta Nuove | trattoriacea.com
Qcoffee – it is on the ground floor of the Fondazione Querini Stampalia and is a popular place for students and office workers to meet for simple, canteen-style food; e.g. a fresh three-course set meal every day for 8–9 euros. Tue–Sat 10am–10.30pm, Sun 10am–7pm | Campo Santa Maria Formosa, 5252 | Tel. 04 12 71 14 11 | Stop: San Zaccaria
Doge Morosini – this centrally-located, well-managed osteria (a place serving wine and simple food) is the perfect spot for a stamina-building lunch during your tour of the city. It is functionally decorated in a modern style, the service is friendly and exceedingly efficient. The cooking is superb with large portions and at low prices. Closed Mondays | Campo Santo Stefano, 2958 | www.osteriadogemorosini.it | Tel. 04 15 22 69 22 | Stop: Accademia
The youth hostel with what is probably the most beautiful view in the world is located on the northern side of Giudecca with a panorama of the Doge’s Palace and Campanile. It is open all year round and reservations are essential. Ostello Venezia | 18 rooms (260 beds) | Fondamenta delle Zitelle, 86 | Tel. 04 15 23 82 11 | www.ostellovenezia.it | Stop: Zitelle
Another alternative to the expensive hotels in Venice is the Campeggio San Nicolò. It is a well-run camp site with space for 174 tents on the north tip of the Lido. There are plenty of other reasonably-priced camp sites on the mainland to the north of Venice too. Via di Sammicheli 14 | Tel. 04 15 26 74 15 | www.campingsannicolo.com
Ca’ Del Dose – a charming guesthouse on a side street off of Riva degli Schiavoni. Modern atmosphere in warm colours, functionally furnished, air-conditioning and friendly service. 6 rooms | Calle del Dose, 3801 | Tel. 04 15 20 98 87 | www.cadeldose.com | Stop: Arsenale
Fish, fruit, vegetables and spices are usually much cheaper at the small markets than in shops – e.g. Campo Santa Margherita or Rio Terrà San Leonardo. Both Mon–Sat 8am–2pm.
Chic, reasonably-priced dresses, jackets, bags and many more articles made of silk, velvet and brocade, tailored by the female inmates of the Giudecca Prison, make a visit to Banco No. 10 worthwhile. Each piece is unique and also helps the prisoners’ rehabilitation programme. Salizzada Sant’Antonin, 3478a | Stop: San Zaccaria
Basilica Di San Marco – the core of this magnificent church, with its five domes and ornately decorated arches and windows, is almost 1000 years old but its over-powering effect on all the senses is the result of numerous extensions and alterations to the architectural fabric. Please note that it is forbidden to take luggage into the church; it can be stored in the Ateneo San Basso (Calle San Basso 315a | Mon–Sat 10am–4.30pm | Sun 2–4pm). Basilica Mon–Sat 9.45am–5pm, Sun 2–5pm, winter til 4pm; galleries daily 9.45am–4.45pm; Pala d’Oro and Tesoro Mon–Fri 9.45am–5pm (winter 9.45am– 4pm), Sat/Sun 2–5pm, winter til 4pm | www.basilicasanmarco.it | Stop: San Marco
Ceiling painting in San Pantalon – a little-known sensation lies waiting behind this modest façade: a gigantic ceiling painting made up of 40 individual canvas elements that will really turn your head in more ways than one. Gian Antonio Fumiani was the man who worked for 24 years to create this colossal Baroque work at the end of the 17th century! 30123, Dorsoduro 3703, Venice | Open Mon–Sat 3–6pm | Stop: San Tomà
Museum of Harmony – an interesting exhibition of historical musical instruments has been established in San Maurizio. All of this is accompanied by taped Baroque music and is completely free! Daily 9.30am–7.30pm | Campo San Maurizio | Stop: Giglio
Experimental theatres and cultural meeting places offer fascinating theatre, dance, music and multi-media performances at affordable prices and the opportunity to meet some of the young people of Venice.Two of the most interesting are:
Teatro Fondamenta Nuove, Fondamenta Nuove, 5013 | Tel. 04 15 22 44 98 www.teatrofondamentanuove.it | Stop: Fondamenta Nuove
Teatro Toniolo in Mestre Piazzetta Battisti, 3 | Tel. 0 41 97 16 66 www.teatrotoniolo.info (Website in Italian.)
Bar hopping – some of the squares have developed into trendy locations in the summer season where people drink and chat until the early hours of the morning – first and foremost the Campi San Luca, Santa Margherita, San Pantalon and San Bartolomeo.