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  • Address: Venice, Italy
  • Hours: Open 24 hours every day
  • Admission: Free

Venice ATTRACTIONS See all

Grand Canal Tours

Venice is a city built on water, and the Grand Canal (Canale Grande) is its bustling main street. Lined with sumptuous Venetian palaces and crowded with gondolas, water taxis, and vaporetti (public ferries), this thoroughfare is a feast for the senses. The Grand Canal winds its way through the central neighborhoods of Venice from the Santa Lucia train station to St. Mark’s Square (Piazza San Marco), passing under the iconic Rialto Bridge along the way, and functions as the scenic main artery for transporting both people and goods around the City of Canals.

The Basics
A sail down the Grand Canal is a trip through centuries of Venetian history, as historic palaces dating from the 13th to the 18th centuries rise out of the water along most of the route. Though stretches of the canal are lined with walkways, many of the important landmarks can be seen only from the water, so a small-group Grand Canal boat tour or combination walking-and-canal tour is by far the best way to go. For a historical tour of the canal, opt for a daytime sightseeing tour so you can see the ornate facades of Venice’s famous palaces. For a romantic journey, choose a moonlit gondola ride. And for a truly Venetian experience, opt for a gondola ride with a serenade!

Things to Know Before You Go
  • Most Grand Canal gondola rides begin or end in St. Mark’s Square, home to St. Mark’s Basilica and the Doge’s Palace, and include a few picturesque minor canals along the way.
  • Alongside Rome and Florence as one of the most popular destinations in Italy, Venice can get extremely crowded. To avoid a long wait at the motor launch, book your Venice tour tickets in advance.
  • The palaces along the Grand Canal have architectural styles that span from the Byzantine to the Renaissance, and are best appreciated with an expert tour guide who can explain their history and importance.
  • Note that Venice and the Grand Canal feature a great number of bridges, many of which are not wheelchair accessible. 

How to Get There
The Grand Canal snakes its way through the center of Venice from the train station to St. Mark’s Square. All of Venice is pedestrian only, so to get from anywhere in the city to the Grand Canal, you must either walk or take a boat.

When to Get There
Venice is lovely all year round, and the Grand Canal is spectacular both by day and night. 

The Islands of Venice
Venice is made up of over 100 small islands, so for a different perspective of this unique city on the water, take a boat tour to one of the quieter outlying islands such as Murano, famous for its glassblowing industry; Burano, known for its lace-making artisans; or Torcello, thought to be the first populated island the in Venetian lagoon.

Tours & Tickets

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Glorious Grand Canal Tour, Venice, null
TVRM_SORTED : true ESSENTIAL : 1 ADMISSION : 3

Glorious Grand Canal Tour

5 star rating: Highly Recommended 15 Reviews

Glide along Venice’s most famous waterway on a luxurious journey along the Grand Canal and take in the glamour of Venice, monumental palaces brimming with ...  Read more

Location: Venice, Italy
Duration: 60 minutes (approx.)

From USD $81.74
Venice Walking Tour and Gondola Ride, Venice, Day Cruises
TVRM_SORTED : true ESSENTIAL : 1 ADMISSION : 5

Venice Walking Tour and Gondola Ride

4 star rating: Recommended 2596 Reviews

Enjoy a walking tour of the city to discover its treasures nestled amid charming squares, bridges and narrow streets and then hop aboard a classic Venetian ...  Read more

Location: Venice, Italy
Duration: 2.15 to 2.45 hrs

From USD $53.31
Venice Gondola Ride and Serenade, Venice, Walking Tours
TVRM_SORTED : true ESSENTIAL : 1 ADMISSION : 5

Venice Gondola Ride and Serenade

4 star rating: Recommended 2320 Reviews

Waft by the beautiful sights of Venice on a 30-minute shared gondola ride and enjoy a serenade, too. Select an afternoon or evening trip, be welcomed aboard ...  Read more

Location: Venice, Italy
Duration: 30 minutes (approx.)

From USD $48.57
Venice-in-a-Day Combination Tour Package, Venice, Gondola Cruises
TVRM_SORTED : true ESSENTIAL : 1 ADMISSION : 5

Venice-in-a-Day Combination Tour Package

4.5 star rating: Recommended 75 Reviews

Make the most of even a short time in romantic Venice with this tour package combo that includes three classic activities with space for free time in between. ...  Read more

Location: Venice, Italy
Duration: 3 hours 30 minutes (approx.)

From USD $139.79
Small Group Venice In a Day with Basilica San Marco and Doges Palace plus Gondola Ride, Venice, ... 
TVRM_SORTED : true ESSENTIAL : 1 ADMISSION : 5

Small Group Venice In a Day with Basilica San Marco and Doges Palace plus Gondola Ride

5 star rating: Highly Recommended 56 Reviews

If you only have a short time to explore Venice this tour is your perfect all-inclusive ticket to the top attractions of the city. Follow one of the expert, ...  Read more

Location: Venice, Italy
Duration: 7 hours 30 minutes (approx.)

From USD $152.82
Venice Grand Canal Small Group 1-Hour Boat Tour, Venice, Walking Tours
TVRM_SORTED : true ESSENTIAL : 1 ADMISSION : 5

Venice Grand Canal Small Group 1-Hour Boat Tour

4.5 star rating: Recommended 664 Reviews

The best way to appreciate the beauty and uniqueness of a city built on water is by boat. Gliding through Venice's Grand Canal and minor canals, you'll be ...  Read more

Location: Venice, Italy
Duration: 60 minutes (approx.)

From USD $56.86
Classic 30-Minute Gondola Ride, Venice, Day Cruises
TVRM_SORTED : true ESSENTIAL : 1 ADMISSION : 5

Classic 30-Minute Gondola Ride

4 star rating: Recommended 27 Reviews

Discover Venice with a shared 30-minute gondola ride. Choose among several departure times and see Venice's hidden canals and historic palaces.

Location: Venice, Italy
Duration: 30 minutes (approx.)

From USD $36.72
Venice Gondola Ride and Serenade with Dinner, Venice, Gondola Cruises
TVRM_SORTED : true ESSENTIAL : 1 ADMISSION : 5

Venice Gondola Ride and Serenade with Dinner

3.5 star rating: Worth doing 592 Reviews

For the quintessential Venetian experience, take a serenaded gondola ride on the canals of Venice, followed by lunch or dinner – depending on your afternoon or ...  Read more

Location: Venice, Italy
Duration: 2 hours (approx.)

From USD $103.06
6-Day Small Group Italy Tour of Rome Florence Pisa Venice, Venice, Gondola Cruises
TVRM_SORTED : true ESSENTIAL : 1 ADMISSION : 5

6-Day Small Group Italy Tour of Rome Florence Pisa Venice

5 star rating: Highly Recommended 1 Review

Six fantastic days to enjoy the best of Italy, from Rome, Florence, Pisa, and Venice . Take this opportunity to visit some amazing places with this small ...  Read more

Location: Venice, Italy
Duration: 6 to 7 days

From USD $1,099.00
30-minute Private Gondola Ride in Venice, Venice, Multi-day Tours
TVRM_SORTED : true ESSENTIAL : 1 ADMISSION : 5

30-minute Private Gondola Ride in Venice

4 star rating: Recommended 1 Review

Explore Venice from a unique and amazing perspective through this 30-minute small group private gondola ride. You'll see the lagoon, picturesque canals, the ...  Read more

Location: Venice, Italy
Duration: 30 minutes (approx.)

From USD $26.65

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