Venice in a Day with St. Mark's Basilica, Doge's Palace, & Gondola Ride

Highlights

  • Acquaint yourself with the history of the city

  • Explore the backstreets of Venice and marvel at the landmarks nestled within

  • Enjoy a 30-minute gondola ride through the city's canals

  • Tour St. Mark's Basilica and familiarize yourself with the story behind it

  • Explore the Doge's Palace

Summary

If you only have a short time in the Floating City, our comprehensive Venice In A Day Tour is a good start. Following a knowledgeable local guide, you'll explore the Doge's Palace and St. Mark's Basilica with skip-the-line access, take to the canals for a gondola ride, and get a real sense of the city on a relaxed city stroll. 

Tour info

Duration
7 hours 30 minutes
Group Size
20
Pricing (From)
Adult: (15-99 years)
€139.00
Child: (2-14 years)
€129.00
Infant: (0-1 years)
€0.00
Commentary
English
Meeting Point

Campo San Giacomo di Rialto 255, (entrance of the Church of San Giacometto), Venice, 30125, IT

Dropoff location

P.za San Marco, 1, (Doge's Palace), Venice, 30124, IT

Why take this tour?

Venice is a city packed with unique history and culture, but if you only have a short amount of time to experience it, then the best way is through our Venice in a Day Tour.

Your day starts early, near the Rialto Bridge, where you'll learn how the city literally grew from the mud of the lagoon. You'll learn to identify the ways that its sea-borne origins have influenced history and culture. Nowhere is this demonstrated better than at the bustling Rialto Fish Market, where you'll see professional chefs mixing with home cooks, competing for some of the freshest fish you'll ever see. 

From there you'll stroll through the backstreets of Venice, passing quiet piazzas and picturesque bridges, occasionally stopping at landmarks like the childhood home of Marco Polo, or popping into churches, like San Giovanni Gristosomo, to see paintings by Venetian masters Bellini and Sebastiano del Piombo. Along the way, your guide will regale you with local history and lore to give you a feel for how Venice has evolved, and how this centuries-old society has survived for so long. 

If you really want to see how the locals live, you have to hop on a boat. That's why this tour includes a 30-minute gondola ride that takes you through both busy thoroughfares and quieter, residential canals. In this way, you can see Venice the way it was meant to be seen - from the water.

After a break for lunch, during which your guide will give you recommendations on where to eat, you'll meet again in St. Mark's Square and stroll into St. Mark's Basilica with pre-reserved, skip-the-line tickets. This enormous church is one of the most unique and awe-inspiring in Italy. As you explore it, your guide will explain how a Byzantine-style building came to be Venice's greatest landmark, while pointing out some of the more unique stories featured in the golden mosaics that cover the ceilings. 

Finally, you'll hop across St. Mark's Square to the Doge's Palace, which was once the political nerve center for an empire that stretched across the Mediterranean and into Asia. It was in this building that the Doge, or Duke of Venice lived and where he lorded over an empire of immense wealth, but almost no actual land. This wealth is on display all through the palace in ornate decorations, and beautiful paintings by Venetian masters like Veronese and Bellini. You'll also get to see parts of the palace that weren't as nice, like the prisons, and the inside of the Bridge of Sighs. 

With a small group of 18 people or fewer, and a passionate local guide to give you the background on what you're seeing and answer all your questions, this is a terrific way to pack a lot of sightseeing into a small amount of time, and see a side of Venice that most visitors miss.

Sites Visited: 
  • St. Mark’s Square (Piazza San Marco)
    St. Mark's Basilica
    Gondola ride
    Doge’s Palace
    New Prisons
    Bridge of Sighs
    Rialto Bridge
    Rialto Fish Market
    House of Marco Polo (exterior)
    Santa Maria dei Miracoli (exterior)

What’s included?

  • Local English-speaking guide

  • Expertly guided walking tour

  • Skip the line ticket for St. Mark's Basilica

  • Pre-reserved ticket to the Doge's Palace

  • Gondola Ride

  • Headset

  • Gratuities

  • Hotel Pick-Up/Drop-Off

  • Lunch

Frequently asked questions

Things to know

Before you book

  • Our group tour utilizes multiple areas that are not wheelchair accessible. Those with wheelchairs should contact us so we can arrange your visit.

  • Sites visited on this tour occasionally close due to holy days, high tides, and/or flooding. If time permits, we will notify you prior to your tour. For last-minute closures, modifications may be communicated at the tour start time. If a site closes, you will tour the exterior of the site.

  • During times of high tides, flooding, or heavy rain, the gondola ride may be substituted for another experience.

  • Large bags and backpacks cannot be accommodated on this tour.

  • This tour allows time to eat lunch on your own with recommendations from your guide. Before lunch, your guide will share a meeting time and location and you will need to arrive at this location on your own.

  • Walks comply with all local government regulations. You may need to wear a mask or provide proof of vaccination to enter certain venues. Please refer to Italy government guidelines for the most up to date information

Before you go

  • This tour is in English.

  • This is a walking tour. Guests should be able to walk at a moderate pace without difficulty.

  • This tour meets 15 minutes prior to the start time. No refunds can be provided for late arrivals or no-shows.

  • If you cannot join your tour (running late, etc.) please contact us. We may be able to reschedule your tour (with an amendment fee) depending on availability.

  • Our group tour utilizes multiple areas that are not wheelchair accessible. Those with wheelchairs should contact us so we can arrange your visit.

  • Due to the religious nature of sites on this tour, all individuals (regardless of gender) must cover their shoulders and knees. It is acceptable to bring extra coverings to put on just before entering a holy site. Walks cannot be responsible for anyone denied entry.

  • Sites visited on this tour occasionally close due to holy days, high tides, and/or flooding. If time permits, we will notify you prior to your tour. For last-minute closures, modifications may be communicated at the tour start time. If a site closes, you will tour the exterior of the site.

  • During times of high tides, flooding, or heavy rain, the gondola ride may be substituted for another experience.

  • Large bags and backpacks cannot be accommodated on this tour.

  • This tour allows time to eat lunch on your own with recommendations from your guide. Before lunch, your guide will share a meeting time and location and you will need to arrive at this location on your own.

  • Tips/gratuities (for your guide) are always appreciated.

  • Walks comply with all local government regulations. You may need to wear a mask or provide proof of vaccination to enter certain venues. Please refer to Italy government guidelines for the most up to date information

Covid Policy

  • Face masks required for travelers in public areas
  • Face masks required for guides in public areas
  • Face masks provided for travelers
  • Hand sanitizer available to travelers and staff
  • Social distancing enforced throughout experience
  • Regularly sanitized high-traffic areas
  • Gear/equipment sanitized between use
  • Guides required to regularly wash hands
  • Regular temperature checks for staff
  • Paid stay-at-home policy for staff with symptoms

Cancellation Policy

    Cancellations received greater than 72 hours prior to tour commencement are fully refundable. Cancellations received within 72 hours of tour commencement are nonrefundable. Amendment requests are subject to availability and price changes. Late arrivals and no shows are nonrefundable. This is applicable to any tour participant that fails to arrive, or arrives after tour departure.

Redemption information

    Mobile tickets will be accepted


    Your voucher will be collected or scanned on redemption

About operator:

Walks (takewalks.com, walksofitaly.com) began over a decade ago (2008, to be exact) in Rome, Italy. We quickly became the premier walking tour company in 7 countries - Italy, Spain, France, the UK, Greece, and Portugal. Our US cities include San Francisco, NYC, Boston, Chicago, and New Orleans.

In 2021, we joined The Hornblower Group (cityexperiences.com) expanding our reach and working alongside this powerhouse travel brand.

Our tour products vary but predominantly we #takewalks, exploring the world by foot - we believe, the best way to get into the heart of a city and its incredible people. From introductory strolls to food tours, day trips, cooking classes, and below the surface, in-depth tours, we have our hand in everything a traveler could want. Oh, and we also like to give our clients exclusive access to the biggest attractions in the world...

Despite the big changes in our brand over the years, our focus has remained simple - to relentlessly create tours with the client experience at the forefront and anchored upon the dedicated, intelligent, and above all, passionate local guides who want to share their cities with you.