Experience the enchantment of one of the world’s most beautiful places with a city break to Venice Lido. Historic and unique, Venice is well known for its outstanding architecture, romantic canals, and winding passages, but it is also well known as a busy and often expensive tourist hotspot. Short breaks to Venice Lido are a great alternative as you can find cheaper accommodation on this tranquil beach island which is only a ten to twenty-minute boat trip away from San Marco. What more could you want?
If you’re looking to expand your trip to the surrounding area, Venice Lido is also conveniently located and will allow you to quickly reach the nearby cities of Verona and Mestre by train – offering the ideal Italian adventure.
Most popular hotels in Venice Lido
Venice Lido, Venetian Riviera
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Venice Lido breaks offer the best of both worlds, with miles of sandy beaches allowing for a peaceful getaway, as well as easy access to the city’s central sights. The area is full of Art Deco architecture and sport resorts, and it’s also one of the few places in Venice where you can drive around - which is definitely a plus if you’re travelling with small kids.
Don’t skip going to the famous San Marco, as this spectacular landmark is a must see with its church and museum: you can even go up the bell tower for amazing panoramic views over the city. Visit the Grand Canal for many other famous sights, including the beautiful 16th century Rialto Bridge. The heart of the island is the Gran Viale Santa Maria Elisabetta full of houses hotels, shops, and restaurants. Since one of the best ways to explore Venice is to wander away from the main city centre and discover beautiful, winding narrow streets and canals, don’t forget to take a map with you. You’ll find dazzling architecture everywhere you look.
Venice is also home of several villas built around 1500 by the Venetian nobility, which you can still visit. You cannot miss Villa Pisani, also known as “the small Versailles”, famous for the amazing labyrinth in its park, and remember to add to your list Villa Foscari (designed by A. Palladio), as well as Villa Widmann, which is considered the jewel of the late Venetian Barocco.
After a long day’s sightseeing, why not try a romantic gondola trip? Holidays to Venice Lido also offer a fantastic shopping experience with a wide range of offers, from traditional Venetian lace, leather, and Murano glass, to top Italian designers around San Marco, or cheaper Italian goods at the Rialto market and farmers’ market.
Wine and Dine
You cannot skip trying the local “Cicchetti”, the typical Venetian small snacks you can find in every bar - something that might remind you of the Spanish Tapas. Cicchetti are eaten with fingers and toothpicks and usually include tiny sandwiches, olives, vegetables, halved hard boiled eggs, seafood or meat and vegetable, all laid on top of a slice of bread or polenta. They might also include very small servings of typical full-course plates, so they’re the best way to taste a great variety of local food at a very reasonable price.
Your other dining options are all part of the delicious Italian culinary landscape, and you’ll find several top-quality restaurants, bars, ‘pizzerie’, and ‘trattorie’, all serving everything from pizza to other Italian and Venetian dishes.
If you’re travelling with kids, Venice Lido is the perfect solution. You might find the chaos of Venice daunting, especially when it comes to transportation, but this area is quieter and definitely more relaxed, despite being still pretty close to the centre of the city. Explore the local streets on a walking tour, or travel by boat and see the sights from the water. You might also love taking a trip to Oasis delle Dune degli Alberoni, a protected natural reserve which includes a pine forest and dunes, and which is famous for having been immortalised by Byron and Goethe.
You can also decide to time your stay with The Venice Carnevale, one of the most famous in the world - an event which will surely delight adults and children alike.
Action and Adventure
Moving around Venice is in itself an adventure, as the city spans over 100 tiny islands. But if you’re looking for even more action, you definitely cannot miss the chance to go kayaking through the canals. This is the kind of experience you probably won’t be able to try anywhere else in the world, and it might well end up being your favourite memory of a Venice holidays. You can even book a 90-minute session to learn to row like a real Venetian gondolier.
Life's a Beach
Venice Lido is an 11km-long beach, famous for being home to the annual Venice Film Festival and for having been described in works by famous writers such as Goethe, Byron, and Thomas Mann. Most of the beach is privately owned by local hotels, but there are also two huge beaches which are freely accessible; so even if you’re not staying in one of the hotels on the coast, you can easily go for a swim or enjoy the sun while lying on the warm sand. You can also head to the main island to enjoy a number of extra options, especially Bagni Alberoni, one of the most famous beaches in the area, and the perfect choice to relax and recharge either on the beach itself or under the beautiful pine trees that surround the area.
Evenings in Venice Lido offer something for every taste, with the area around San Marco full of options. Consider dining around the Rialto Bridge for the most picturesque background, or head off to the lively student areas of Dorsoduro and Campo Santa Margherita for cheaper options. Venice Lido itself offers a variety of relaxed bars and restaurants which are great for the family. You could even catch Brad Pitt, as the glamorous annual Venice Film Festival is held right on the Lido. This area also has a casino and a cinema, and it’s full of bars where you can go for cocktails in the evening. If you’re a music enthusiast, don’t miss the Veneto Jazz Festival, which sees the participation of many famous Jazz icons.
Couples on holiday in Venice definitely won’t find a lack of romantic options. Don’t skip going on a gondola ride to enjoy all the charming sights Venice has to offer right from the canals - perhaps while listening to a serenade too. There aren’t many places in the world where you can experience such a beautiful city from water level, and it’s definitely not to miss during a holiday in Venice.
Take a stroll down Gran Viale Santa Maria Elisabetta with your partner, to discover the abundance of shops and restaurants, and don’t forget to explore Malamocco, a picturesque village located on the southern part of Venice Lido, and which is full of landmarks and lovely scenery. And if you’re still full of energy and desire to explore, consider going on an excursion to some of the sights just outside of Venice, or book a romantic tour—complete with candlelit dinner.
Famous for being immortalised by Thomas Mann, Byron, and Goethe, and also for being home to the annual Venice Film Festival, Venice Lido is full winding narrow streets and canals which, paired with the interesting architecture, are a delight to discover. The most important church in the area is San Nicolò al Lido, dedicated to St Nicholas, patron saint of sailors; but wherever you’ll look you’ll also find plenty of Deco architecture, history, and charm.
Visit the Armenian Catholic Monastery in the nearby San Lazzaro degli Armeni: this is the place where Lord Byron came to study Armenian and it hosts a permanent exhibition devoted to the famous poet. The monks of the monastery also organise a tour of the island which you might be interested in joining. Of course, if you love art you cannot skip Accademia Gallery, one of the most famous museums in Venice which hosts the paintings of the greats—Titian, Veronese, Tintoretto, Tiepolo. While you’re here, why don’t you add a boat trip to the glass factory on Murano Island for some of the typical glasswork? You also cannot miss the Correr Museum which has an exhibition of Roman artefacts and a picture gallery, and the Peggy Gugenheim Museum which houses an amazing collection of modern art, including works by Picasso and Pollock. The Basilica of Santa Maria Assunta, on the island of Torcello, is also amazing for its architecture and unique collection of mosaics.