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Things to do in
Piazza San Marco

Linger at one of its many outdoor cafes with views of St. Mark’s Basilica and Doge’s Palace.

Piazza San Marco: Our most recommended tours and activities

Venice: Grand Canal Gondola Ride with App Commentary

1. Venice: Grand Canal Gondola Ride with App Commentary

Feel the essence of Venice as you explore hidden and picturesque waterways near the Grand Canal with a gondola ride. Listen to in-app commentary to learn more about the city as you admire the sights. Start your activity by meeting the host, who will explain some curiosities about the history of gondolas and gondoliers. Get free access to an app with commentary of your itinerary on the gondola. As you enjoy the beauties of the Grand Canal, admire the marvelous Palaces such as the Peggy Guggenheim Collection Palace, the Gritti Palace, the Salute Church, the Punta della Dogana. Discover the worldwide-famous La Fenice Theatre and the Mozart House along the romantic and hidden waterways. At the end of your ride, enjoy a breathtaking view of the Saint Mark’s Basin with San Giorgio Island. Lastly, experience a ride in a unique virtual reality as you glide over the Grand Canal's tranquil waters at sunset over the centuries, and then discover the craftsmanship and secrets behind Venice's iconic boat with an up-close look at a sectioned model.

Venice: Burano, Torcello & Murano Boat Tour w/Glassblowing

2. Venice: Burano, Torcello & Murano Boat Tour w/Glassblowing

Discover some of the most famous islands of the Venetian Lagoon on this full-day boat tour. Travel with your guide through Venice Lagoon on a panoramic vessel and enjoy the islands of Murano, Burano, and Torcello. Start your day of adventure by boarding a comfortable panoramic boat as you set off from St. Mark's. Learn about the islands from your host along the way. Take in the sights of this ancient city for around 30 minutes until you reach your first destination, Murano. Enjoy a glass-blowing demonstration with a glass master accompanied by a historical explanation of the craft. Stop by the souvenir store at the glass factory and enjoy an exclusive 10% discount on your purchases. Your scheduled time in Murano also includes free time to explore on your own. Leave Murano behind as you travel to the nearby island of Burano. Witness the quaint and colorful houses that dot the island and observe the lace makers at work. Become acquainted with their rare skill which is considered some of the finest worldwide. Stop for a bite to eat during your time in Burano and taste some of the local biscotti that are native to the island. Travel to your final stop, Torcello. Enjoy a 1-hour visit to the island and visit historical landmarks such as the Cathedral of Santa Maria Assunta, Attila's Throne, the Devil's Bridge, and the Bell Tower. Finish your adventure with a 1-hour trip back to Venice taking in the breathtaking ambiance of the Venetian lagoon.

Venice: Grand Canal by Gondola with Live Commentary

3. Venice: Grand Canal by Gondola with Live Commentary

Explore the canals of Venice aboard a gondola. Enjoy live commentary from your guide as your gondolier takes you down narrow ways and along the Grand Canal. Learn about the city's palaces, churches, and attractions. Hear about local stories and the history of the gondola and gondoliers. During your journey, admire the Mozart’s House and pass by the magnificent La Fenice Theatre and the “De le Ostreghe” Canal. Continue to the most important canal in Venice, the Grand Canal. Make your way towards the Salute Church, the Peggy Guggenheim Collection, and some of the stunning Venetian palaces that run alongside the canal, like Ca' Dolfin, Ca' Loredan, Grimani Palace, and many others. You will also see Punta de la Dogana and Saint Mark’s Basin before making your way back to Campo San Moisè.  Lastly, experience a ride in a unique virtual reality as you glide over the Grand Canal's tranquil waters at sunset over the centuries, and then discover the craftsmanship and secrets behind Venice's iconic boat with an up-close look at a sectioned model.

Venice: St. Mark's Basilica Ticket, Audio Guide, & VR Tour

4. Venice: St. Mark's Basilica Ticket, Audio Guide, & VR Tour

Save time during your visit to Venice with a skip-the-line ticket to the popular St. Mark’s Basilica. Admire the hundreds of golden mosaics in the Basilica and learn details about the byzantine art inside with your audio guide. Download your audio guide to your mobile device and head to St. Mark’s Basilica to begin your tour. Breeze past the long lines and put in your headphones. Explore the five-domes and an array of artworks. Hear legends and stories surrounding this church which has stood for almost a 1,000 years.  Witness the dazzling effect of the 43,000 square feet of mosaics in the church. Take in the stunning marble inlay work on the floors. Soak up the atmosphere in the building that dominates St. Mark’s Square.  Continue your journey with an exciting virtual reality experience. With the VR headset on, time peels away, revealing Piazza San Marco and its iconic monuments as they once were. Picture the Basilica transformed into the Doge's private chapel and the Doge's Palace into a medieval fortress!

Doge's Palace & St. Mark's Basilica with Terrace Access Tour

5. Doge's Palace & St. Mark's Basilica with Terrace Access Tour

Delve deep into Venice’s history with a 3-hour guided tour of St. Mark’s Basilica and the Doge's Palace, either as a private tour or shared group experience. Take in two of the city’s most important landmarks while discovering the history of the one-time mercantile capital of the Mediterranean.  Start by exploring St. Mark's Square with your guide before heading into the cathedral. From the first-floor terrace you’ll be able to admire views across the lagoon and see the famous bronze horses up close. Hear how they traveled all the way to Paris and back in Napoleon’s time. St. Mark's Basilica sometimes closes to visitors without warning. If this happens, visit the Church of San Zaccaria or the Correr Museum instead, depending on availability. Take a tour of the beautifully ornate 15th-century church and its flooded crypt or learn about the art and history of Venice. Next, you’ll use the priority entrance to reach Doge's Palace, formerly the residence of the leader of the Republic of Venice. Enjoy visiting the Chamber of the Great Council and courtrooms among other things. Highlights include frescoes by Tintoretto and the Giants’ Staircase.  After this, cross the infamous Bridge of Sighs that links to the New Prisons. Learn how the bridge got its name and the purpose for its construction in the 17th century as you take in the amazing views of the canals. At the end of your tour, feel free to stay and explore the Doge’s Palace with tips from your guide.

Venice: Guided Tour of St. Mark's Basilica & Doge's Palace

6. Venice: Guided Tour of St. Mark's Basilica & Doge's Palace

Discover the essence of Venice on an intimate guided tour, exploring two of the city's most iconic sites: the Basilica of St. Mark and the Doge's Palace. With skip-the-line tickets included, you'll bypass the queues and immerse yourself in the grandeur of these Venetian marvels under the expert guidance of your knowledgeable host. Begin your journey at St. Mark's Square, where you'll be captivated by the historic Clock Tower and the majestic Marble Lions. Delve into Venice's rich history as your guide shares fascinating tales of the city's past. Then, step inside the renowned Basilica of St. Mark with exclusive access, marveling at its shimmering golden mosaics and lavish décor while uncovering its significance as a symbol of Venetian prestige and prosperity. Continue exploring the magnificent Doge's Palace, a splendid example of Gothic architecture and once the seat of Venetian governance. Gain insight into the lives of the Venetian Doges and the masterful craftsmen behind the palace's intricate design. As you wander through this architectural gem, soak in panoramic views of the lagoon and hear captivating stories, including the legendary exploits of Casanova and the poignant tale of the Bridge of Sighs and the adjoining Old and New Prisons. After the tour, extend your Venetian odyssey with complimentary access to the Correr Museum, National Archaeological Museum, and Biblioteca Marciana, where you can further immerse yourself in Venice's rich heritage and culture.

Venice: Unusual Sights Walking Tour with Optional Gondola

7. Venice: Unusual Sights Walking Tour with Optional Gondola

Get off the beaten path of Venice, away from the crowds. With a guide, explore the heart of Venice, including lesser-known areas, rich with history such as the Rialto Bridge. First, discover Campo Santa Maria Formosa, one of the largest squares of the city, and explore the nine streets and 11 bridges that branch from it. Cross the Campiello degli Orbi, where once lived presumably a blind people Confraternity. Next, arrive at the Saints John and Paul area, now the site of Venetian hospital. Visit the labyrinth of calli and campi (narrow Venetian streets and squares) and find Marco Polo's House, a building believed to be the home of the famous explorer, marked by a white plaque and now used as a theater. Finally, pass through St. Mark's Square with its stunning monuments as well as Doge's Palace. Continue your experience with an optional gondola ride discovering Venice from a unique angle: glide under the Bridge of Sighs into the magical San Marco Basin and greet the charming San Giorgio Island. A dream journey awaits!

Venice: Boat Transfer to/from Marco Polo Airport w/ 3 Routes

8. Venice: Boat Transfer to/from Marco Polo Airport w/ 3 Routes

Embrace the timeless tradition of traveling by water, just as Venetians have done for centuries. Bid farewell to traffic jams and embrace the mesmerizing vistas of the Venetian Lagoon as you make your way from Marco Polo Airport to Venice's vibrant core. To begin your journey, exchange your voucher at the activity provider's travel office to receive your ticket. The meeting point indicated is the closest office to the pier. Before boarding the boat, make sure to validate the ticket using the stamping machines or request assistance from a crew member. Explore the city at your own pace. After discovering the allure of Venice's landmarks, relax knowing you have up to 30 days to activate your return ticket. Soak up the charm of Murano and Lido, experience Venice's beautiful center, and visit the bustling cruise terminal with ease. Depending on the option selected, your ticket is valid for the below lines. All head in the direction of or departing from Marco Polo Airport and stop by some of Venice's main attractions: Blue line: Marco Polo Airport - Murano Museum - Murano Colonna - Fondamente Nove - Hospital - Basins - Lido Santa Maria Elisabetta - Arsenale - San Zaccaria Jolanda - Piazza San Marco Giardinetti - Zattere - Giudecca Hotel Hilton Molino Stucky Orange line: Marco Polo Airport - Murano Colonna - Madonna dell'Orto - Guglie (Railway) - San Stae - Rialto - Sant'Angelo - Ca' Rezzonico - Santa Maria del Giglio - Piazza San Marco Giardinetti Red line: Marco Polo Airport - Murano Museum - Certosa - Lido Santa Maria Elisabetta - Arsenale - San Zaccaria Jolanda - Piazza San Marco

Venice: Private Gondola Ride along Grand Canal

9. Venice: Private Gondola Ride along Grand Canal

Board an authentic gondola and take a romantic journey along the Grand Canal in Venice. See the historic sights along the shoreline as you glide down the canal. Set off from the departure point and admire marvelous palaces, such as the Peggy Guggenheim Collection and Basilica Santa Maria della Salute. Explore the secret waterways of Venice and soak up the city's atmosphere with your friends or your beloved. Travel by gondola close to St. Mark's Square, Fenice Opera House, Punta della Dogana, and many other charming palaces. Pass under a small bridge as you discover the hidden spots reachable only by gondola.

Venice Doge's Palace & St Mark's Basilica Skip-the-Line Tour

10. Venice Doge's Palace & St Mark's Basilica Skip-the-Line Tour

Set off on a guided walking tour of St. Mark’s Square, the Doge's Palace, and St Mark's Basilica with skip-the-line entry. Meet your guide at St. Mark’s Square and head for Doge's Palace, the extraordinary palace that served as the seat of Venetian political power for centuries. Enter the splendid rooms, with hundreds of painted masterpieces. Explore where the Duke and his Council controlled the fate of a 1,000-year republic and admire the details of the medieval gold staircase. See the famous Bridge of Sighs. Enter the notorious Venetian prison that held Giacomo Casanova. Visit St Mark’s Basilica and enjoy a guided tour of this Byzantine masterpiece, with its beautiful gold mosaics and marble floor inlays. See the treasure and the terrace of the Basilica of St.Mark's

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What people are saying about Piazza San Marco

Overall rating

4.4
(39,412 reviews)

Good value for money. You get more than just the gondola ride - a mini tour about the history of Venice and a VR experience at the end. I recommend it!

Sandra was a great tour guide. The tour is worth it, you’ll find out lots of interesting information about Venice, and the history of Venice.

Great fun! Sometimes the range to activate the next activity was a little off. But all in all v good!

Wish it could have been a little longer .. but wow enjoyed it thoroughly.

The guide Faola or something like that, was very good!