Two Days in Venice: A Guide to Must-See Destinations

Attention all travelers! If your travel plans include a two-day visit to the enchanting city of Venice, then this post is a must-read. Here, you will find all the necessary tips and recommendations for your Venice itinerary, including must-visit places and useful travel advice.

Venice is undeniably one of the most extraordinary cities in the world. While it may be a popular tourist destination, its unique charm and beauty cannot be denied. In fact, I was so captivated by Venice that I couldn’t resist revisiting it. And let me tell you, the city did not disappoint. It remains one of the most stunning destinations in Northern Italy.

When we imagine Venice, we often picture gondolas gracefully gliding through narrow canals, surrounded by elegant pastel-colored buildings that hold centuries of history within their walls. And while this is certainly a part of Venice’s allure, there is so much more to discover. This two-day itinerary will take you beyond the typical tourist spots, giving you a taste of the city’s true essence. So get ready to explore the iconic Rialto Bridge, bustling with water taxis and small boats, and much more. Trust us, you won’t be disappointed

2-Day Venice Travel Guide: Insider Tips for an Unforgettable Trip

Before delving into the details of your two-day Venice itinerary, let us first equip you with some essential travel tips.

  • Venice is home to over 250,000 inhabitants and is situated in the enchanting North-East region of Italy.
  • The primary language spoken is Italian, but don’t fret, as many locals also have a basic understanding of other languages such as English and German.
  • The official currency used in Venice is the Euro, so make sure to have some on hand for your adventures in this beautiful city

Does Venice come with a hefty price tag?

While Venice may be known for its expensive prices, there are ways to save money on your trip.

For instance, instead of splurging on overpriced beverages at popular cafes near tourist hotspots like Piazza San Marco or Rialto Bridge.

opt for smaller cafes that offer authentic Italian coffee and espresso at a more reasonable cost. In fact, some of the best cafes can be found on the side streets, where you can enjoy a bottle of Coke or cappuccino for a fraction of the price.

And don’t worry about missing out on the main attractions – Venice is just as beautiful when explored on a budget. Plus, since the city is not very large, transportation costs can be kept to a minimum. With no cars allowed, traveling by gondola or water taxis is a must, but you can save even more by walking to most places.

As for water, bring a refillable bottle and take advantage of the few water fountains scattered throughout the city for a refreshing and inexpensive drink.

So, while Venice may have a reputation for being expensive, with a little planning and resourcefulness, you can experience the city without breaking the bank.

The ideal lodging for a two-day stay in Venice is a crucial decision to make

During my travels, I had the pleasure of visiting Venice on two occasions. The first time, I resided on the charming Venice Lido, an outer island that required a boat ride to reach the main city. The scenic journey was a delight, and I found the Lido to be quite endearing, making it a desirable choice for future stays. The second time, I opted for accommodation on the mainland, taking a bus to reach Venice. Alas, the exact location eludes my memory. However, I have compiled some alternative lodging recommendations for those planning a trip to Venice.

LUXURY :The enchanting city of Venice boasts a plethora of opulent 5-star hotels, such as the renowned Gritti Palace, offering breathtaking views of the iconic Grand Canal. For those seeking a lavish experience, the Gritti Palace is a must-visit destination. Curious about the rates? Simply click here to explore the luxurious offerings of the Gritti Palace

MID-RANGE :Step back in time to the 18th century and immerse yourself in the opulence of Antica Locanda Sturion Residenza d’Epoca. Adorned with exquisite antique furniture, adorned silk wallpaper, and boasting breathtaking views of the Rialto and Grand Canal, this hotel is a true gem of its time. Delve into the past and experience the lavishness of a bygone era. For a glimpse into the prices of this historic establishment, look no further

BUDGET : Nestled within the charming Hotel Locanda Ca’ Foscari, guests can choose from a selection of tastefully designed rooms, some boasting private en-suite bathrooms while others offer a more affordable option with shared facilities. Conveniently situated near a Vaporetto ferry stop, this family-run establishment is the perfect base for exploring the surrounding area. Discover the various rates available and make your reservation today

BUDGET: If you’re considering a train journey or seeking budget-friendly lodging, Mestre, the mainland’s premier metropolis, is an ideal choice. The conveniently situated ao Hotel Venezia Mestre, located near the train station, offers both cozy private rooms and shared dormitories in a welcoming and laid-back setting. Take a peek at the rates here and discover the ideal accommodation for your travels.


One of the top recommendations I can offer for a journey to Venice is to carefully consider the timing of your travels. It is crucial to choose your travel dates thoughtfully

ℹ️ The summer months bring forth a bustling atmosphere, as tourists flock to Venice in droves. July and August, in particular, are known to be peak seasons, with crowds of visitors filling the streets. While Venice is always a popular destination, these months bring about a frenzy of activity

ℹ️ If one possesses a sensitive olfactory system, the scent during those particular months may be bothersome. Is it truly accurate to claim that Venice has an unpleasant odor? The validity of this statement remains uncertain, yet it is widely believed that the city exudes a putrid stench during the draining of its canals in the summer season

ℹ️ My travels to Venice were not limited to a single occasion, as I had the opportunity to experience the city twice. The first time was during the months of May and June, while the second visit took place towards the end of September. This timing proved to be ideal, as I did not encounter any unpleasant odors that are often associated with the city. While there was a noticeable influx of tourists, it was not as overwhelming as the images I had seen of Venice in July and August. The weather, too, was agreeable, with the summer heat being kept at bay

ℹ️ My recommendation is to plan a trip towards the end of September, or perhaps in October, or even during the spring season

ℹ️ If one desires to behold the alternate facet of Venice, a journey during the carnival season would be most opportune.

Is a mere 48 hours in the enchanting city of Venice sufficient?

Venice is a popular destination for day-trippers, particularly those arriving on cruise ships. While a brief visit may offer a glimpse of the city’s beauty, I highly recommend extending your stay to two days for a more immersive experience 

You can also embark on a journey to one of the many exquisite islands in close proximity, and witness the splendor of Venice without the bustling crowds (during the early hours of the morning or after 6 pm

➡️If you desire to embark on a series of excursions from Venice, it would be wise to allocate additional time to thoroughly discover the remarkable destinations in the vicinity

➡️If you plan on embarking on day trips during your stay in Italy, it may be beneficial to consider renting a car. To ensure a smooth and enjoyable driving experience, here are a few pointers to keep in mind

Top Recommendations for a 48-Hour Venice Adventure

Day 1:

It is optimal to commence your day at the stunning Piazza San Marco. From this central hub, you can effortlessly explore the myriad of other captivating sights. I shall refrain from mentioning any particular locales for pausing or indulging in a delectable meal


St Mark’s Square, also known as Piazza San Marco, is a bustling hub in the city of Venice. To fully experience its beauty and charm, I suggest arriving early, before the influx of tourists. This way, you can truly immerse yourself in the sights and sounds of this enchanting square without the crowds

The sprawling Piazza San Marco stands as the grandest square in the city, adorned with iconic structures such as St Mark’s Basilica and the Doge’s Palace. Its magnificence has been praised by Napoleon, who famously referred to it as “the world’s most exquisite salon.” In the past, this square served as the epicenter for political discourse and bustling trade activities.

In addition to the magnificent historical landmarks (a few of which are mentioned below), there are also numerous dining establishments and coffee shops scattered throughout the area. However, it should be noted that indulging in these culinary delights can come at a steep price. For those on a tighter budget, perhaps forgo a cup of coffee at a price tag of 10€ or more and instead, venture into one of the charming side streets for a more budget-friendly option.

Discovering the Piazza is a breeze when you heed the signs or simply input “Piazza San Marco” on your trusty mobile device.


The magnificent edifice of Basilica di San Marco, renowned as the illustrious Saint Mark’s Basilica, stands tall and proud on the bustling Piazza San Marco, captivating the hearts of all who lay eyes upon it.

The basilica, bearing the name of Saint Mark, serves as a sanctuary for his remains. Its construction, dedicated solely to this purpose, commenced in the 9th century. Adorning the facade is the oldest mosaic, dating back to the 13th century, portraying the arrival of St Mark’s pilfered body at the basilica through the lunette above the far-left portal.

Was it a heist? In the 9th century, cunning Venetians managed to abscond with the remains of Saint Mark from Alexandria, triumphantly returning them to their homeland of Venice. And thus, the grand undertaking of constructing a church in his honor commenced.

Over the years, numerous transformations have taken place within its walls. Prior to its designation as Venice’s cathedral in 1807, it served as the Doge’s exclusive sanctuary. Its exterior exudes grandeur, a sentiment surely echoed within its walls.

Although we did not venture inside, a tour of the remarkable interior can be arranged for those who are intrigued. However, be prepared to join the never-ending queue – a common sight in Venice. Even at the crack of dawn, the lines are already overflowing with eager visitors. Alternatively, one can explore the San Marco Museum, the Treasury, and the Golden Altarpiece (Pala d’oro) for a glimpse of Venetian splendor.

ℹ️ Admission to the grand basilica is complimentary, although contributions are greatly appreciated. However, due to its immense popularity, gaining access may require a considerable amount of time. It is advisable to arrive early, as the doors open at approximately 9:30 am, and there may already be a queue forming

ℹ️ Instead, you have the option to acquire a fast-track pass (complete with a guided excursion) in order to maximize your valuable moments spent discovering the city itself.

ℹ️ The doors of our establishment are unlocked every day of the week, starting from Monday until Saturday, and operating hours span from approximately 9:30 in the morning until 5 in the afternoon. On Sundays, we welcome visitors from 2 o’clock until 4 or 5 in the evening.

ℹ️ During the early hours of the Sabbath, one has the opportunity to partake in a religious ceremony, yet is unable to freely roam and explore their surroundings

ℹ️The museum within the basilica welcomes visitors every day, starting from approximately half past nine in the morning until around a quarter to five in the afternoon.

ℹ️ Attire yourself with modesty, ensuring that your knees and shoulders remain concealed

ℹ️ The cost of admission to the museum is approximately 5€, while access to the Pala d’oro requires an additional fee of 2€. For a glimpse into the Treasury, visitors can expect to pay around 3€.


Standing tall at a towering height of 99 meters, the Campanile di San Marco, also known as St. Mark’s Campanile, is a must-see attraction in the charming city of Venice. This magnificent bell tower has a rich history, with its construction dating back to the 12th century and undergoing multiple reconstructions until the 16th century when it finally took on its current form. However, a tragic collapse in 1902 left the city in dismay, but the resilient Venetians rebuilt the campanile and proudly inaugurated it in 1912. A true testament to the enduring spirit of Venice.

Aside from everything else: The perspectives from the summit remain exceptional

Much like numerous other destinations in Venice, it boasts immense popularity – often resulting in lengthy queues

As long as there are steps to conquer, the lift remains the key to reaching the summit. Therefore, the journey does not entail scaling numerous flights to marvel at the breathtaking views of Venice and its surrounding lagoon. Undeniably, the experience is awe-inspiring and well worth the investment – basking in the panoramic vista from up high was undoubtedly a highlight of my time in Venice.

By 10 o’clock in the morning, the queues remained brief (despite being in September), and I rose without enduring a lengthy wait.

Visitors hoping to ascend St Mark’s Bell Tower must obtain their tickets in person at the site. These tickets are priced at approximately 10 €


The Palazzo Ducale is highly recommended by many due to its impressive presence. Although I had a strong desire to explore the museum, the overwhelming crowds deterred me, leading me to admire it from a distance instead.

The grandiose Doge’s Palace, erected during the 14th century, proudly stands on Piazza San Marco, serving as the official residence of the Doge of Venice – the esteemed elected leader of bygone eras. However, throughout its rich history, the palace has also been utilized as a penitentiary on occasion. In the present day, it has been transformed into a magnificent museum, showcasing a plethora of captivating exhibitions.

The structure stands as a prime exemplar of Gothic architecture, showcasing its intricate design and rich history. By obtaining a ticket to the illustrious Doge’s Palace, one can delve into the depths of its past and marvel at its awe-inspiring construction, now preserved as a museum

ℹ️ The queue depicted in the image belongs to the renowned Basilica di San Marco, while the lines for the Doge’s Palace are marginally shorter yet still lengthy.

ℹ️ Unfortunately, purchasing a solitary ticket for the illustrious Doge’s Palace is not an option. However, fret not, as the ticket encompasses entry to various neighboring museums as well. The most economical option comes at a price of 25€, allowing you to indulge in a cultural experience beyond just the grandeur of the palace.

ℹ️ Avoid the hassle by securing your tickets beforehand. I strongly believe that my experience in Venice would have been enhanced with better preparation and early ticket purchases.


The Grand Canal, a bustling waterway in Venice, is a must-see for any traveler. While it may not fit the traditional definition of a “street,” its role as a major transportation route cannot be overlooked. Here, a lively array of gondolas, boats, and other vessels provide public transit, while charming hotels, shops, and restaurants adorn its banks. The Grand Canal truly encapsulates the unique charm and vitality of the city of Venice.

Spanning over 3 kilometers in length and ranging between 30 to 70 meters in width, the Grand Canal boasts an average water depth of 5 meters. Despite its alluring charm, swimming in this majestic waterway is strictly prohibited. However, the canal remains a captivating and unparalleled destination. A leisurely stroll along its banks or a serene boat cruise or gondola ride will reveal a plethora of magnificent historical structures, some of which date back to the 15th century

My adoration for the Piazza in Venice is undeniable, yet it pales in comparison to my deep love for the Grand Canal. Despite its bustling crowds, a leisurely stroll along the Grand Canal evokes the sensation of being in the most extraordinary city in the world. While the food and drinks here may come at a premium, the experience is well worth the price. For those unconcerned with budget constraints and willing to splurge for a breathtaking view, this is the perfect spot to indulge in a delicious meal.


The Rialto Bridge, also known as Ponte de Rialto in Venetian, stands tall as the most renowned bridge in all of Venice. Despite its tendency to attract large crowds, it remains a must-visit destination. This bridge holds the title of being the oldest among the four that span the majestic Grand Canal, constructed during the late 16th century. Its distinctive structure has established it as a favorite spot for picturesque photographs, making it an essential addition to your 2-day itinerary in Venice.

The bridge boasts a variety of shops, offering an array of souvenirs such as the iconic Venice masks. On one side, a cozy nook invites you to take a seat and observe the bustling activity of people and gondolas, even if dining at a restaurant is not on your itinerary.


For numerous travelers, a journey on a gondola is a must-do experience. The cost for a ride is approximately 80-90€ during daylight hours, with each boat comfortably accommodating up to six individuals.

To be frank, I am uncertain if a gondola excursion justifies the expense, so I opted not to partake. However, if it is a must-do on your list or your budget allows for it, then it is undoubtedly an unforgettable experience.

🎟️🌟 Secure your gondola rides now for unbeatable deals and savings.

With only two days in Venice, we have a jam-packed itinerary and cannot afford to waste any time. This enchanting city offers endless beauty, and there are plenty of remarkable destinations nearby to add to your schedule.


On the second day of your Venetian adventure, I highly recommend embarking on a journey to one or two of the destinations I have listed below.


A must-see gem in Venice during your two-day stay is the captivating island of Burano. You may have caught a glimpse of its vibrant and whimsical houses on various social media platforms. This small island is situated northeast of Venice and can easily be reached by a ferry – known as a Vaporetto – which is the primary mode of transportation in Venice and offers reasonable fares.

  • The journey to reach there from Venice by water taxi typically spans around 40 minutes.
  • It is highly recommended that you allocate a minimum of 2 hours to leisurely explore the charming island.
  • Delve deeper into the logistics of reaching Burano and discovering its many attractions. Follow this link to access my personal blog post on the captivating island.


One potential addition to your Venice travel plans could be Murano – a charming island situated near Burano. This idyllic spot is famous for its rich history of glass craftsmanship. Be sure to explore the various tours available that showcase the intricate workings of a glass factory

One can effortlessly merge a journey to both islands and reach them via the same Vaporetto. The beauty of it all is the spontaneity it offers – while en route from Burano to Venice, one can still decide whether to explore Murano or not.


In the event that you possess additional time, I highly recommend venturing towards the charming island of Venice Lido. Situated within the Venetian Lagoon, this 11-kilometer-long barrier island boasts a stunning beach as well as a variety of quaint cafes, luxurious hotels, and charming shops. In my opinion, it is certainly worth a visit. However, with only 2 days at your disposal, it may be necessary to forego this destination in favor of the even more impressive Burano.

One can embark on a journey from Venice to Lido by hopping on a Vaporetto. The voyage lasts approximately 20 minutes, providing a glimpse into an entirely distinct aspect of Venice.

Your time in Venice has come to an end after two days! By following this carefully curated itinerary, you have not only experienced the must-see attractions but also explored the diverse facets of Venice and its neighboring islands.


Renowned for its idyllic waterways and rich history, Venice is a city that exudes charm and beauty. The tranquil canals are a playground for gondolas, gliding gracefully past vibrant, ornate buildings. The iconic Rialto Bridge stands tall over the bustling Grand Canal, adding to the city’s enchanting atmosphere. Meandering through cobblestone streets and quaint squares, one can’t help but be captivated by Venice’s timeless allure. In just two days, you will immerse yourself in all the wonders this city has to offer – a true masterpiece of serenity and elegance.

Venice has long been hailed as a haven for lovebirds and newlyweds seeking a romantic escape. Its charm and allure make it the ideal destination for a quick getaway with your significant other. However, do not be mistaken, for Venice offers so much more than just a lover’s paradise. Its rich history, stunning architecture, and vibrant culture make it a must-visit for all travelers, regardless of their relationship status. So, whether you’re strolling hand in hand with your sweetheart or exploring the city solo, Venice has something special to offer to everyone.

Venice is a remarkable destination that caters to all, with its rich history, vibrant architecture, and more waiting to be discovered along this suggested itinerary. In just two days, you can fully immerse yourself in the wonders of this city. I trust that this carefully curated 48-hour Venice experience has been a valuable guide in planning your upcoming journey

Enjoy and stay safe.