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Enjoy 4 days in Venice exploring the many alleyways, lanes, canals & bridges that make up this magical city. Visit Venice’s most important sites, linger in a multitude of unique boutiques selling colourful Murano glass & sail across the lagoon to visit one of Venice’s islands. Venice is filled with treasures just waiting to be discovered.
Upon arrival in Venice make your way to your selected hotel for check-in. An optional transfer can be booked on request. Rest of the day at leisure to relax or start getting acquainted with Venice. Overnight accommodation.
After breakfast at your hotel enjoy a morning walking tour through the most characteristic and important places for the history of Venice. The tour starts with a historical introduction of St. Marks’s Square, and its architectural delights, allowing you to discover the history of the majestic St. Mark’s Basilica, the illustrious Doge’s Palace, once the seat of the power of the Republic of Venice, and the extraordinary, renaissance clock tower. Leaving the square, you will be guided into the residential Castello area, allowing you to discover this part of Venice in all of its elegance, through its labyrinth of narrow alleys - “calli”, many bridges, winding canals and wide picturesque squares - “campi”. You can expect to discover the Santa Maria Formosa Square, one of the largest squares in Venice with its church, named after its visitation of the Holy Virgin; the Saints Giovanni and Paolo Square where you will be able to admire the famous church, the resting place of several Doges; and the equestrian monument of Bartolomeo Colleoni, an Italian mercenary Captain. The former residence of Marco Polo, probably the most famous Venetian merchant, and the Malibran theatre are also part of the itinerary. Once inside the Palace, you will visit the halls where the Duke (Doge) and his Council controlled the fate of the Serene Republic, whilst surrounded by hundreds of artistic masterpieces and discover the political history of Venice and its people. You will be able to admire the paintings realised by some of the most important artists of the Italian Renaissance, amongst them, the world's largest oil painting by Tintoretto. Passing through the famous Bridge of Sighs, you will reach the new prisons. This guided tour concludes in the courtyard of the Doge's Palace. Here it will be possible for you to stay longer inside the Palace absorbing the history and mystery of days gone by.
In the afternoon embark on a tour of Venice's unique islands. Departing from your Venice, sail across the lagoon to visit the Three Islands of the Venetian Lagoon: Murano, Burano and Torcello. The first stop is at the well known Island of Murano, famous for its glass making since the 10th century. Here you will visit a glass factory and furnace to see the making of Venetian glass. Your local guide will explain to you the history and the process of the glass making throughout the years. Then, crossing the northern part of the Lagoon, we arrive at the colourful Island of Burano, famous for its brightly coloured houses, fishing industry and also its lace-making, you will have time to walk around this elegant little island and also visiting its shops, your guide will point out to you one of the specialized shops where it is possible to see one of the Local ladies working on the Burano Lace, she will show you the different stitches involved in making these wonderful works of art. We then leave the Island of Burano and take a short boat ride to the Island of Torcello, known as the “Mother of Venice”. You have the chance to visit the Basilica, which is one of the oldest in the Lagoon and holds some beautiful mosaics or maybe visit the museum. If not you can just spend your time walking around this enchanting and very historical island. Return to Venice. (B)
Breakfast at hotel and morning at leisure to shop or continue exploring on your own. In the afternoon take part in an excursion to explore the lesser-known areas of Venice and let yourself be led through the labyrinth of alleyways, squares or “campi” and hear about the history, stories and the local Venetian dialect. On leaving the square, you will stop in front of the Fenice Theatre, one of the most famous Opera House's in Europe, learn about its glorious but also troubled history. Passing through other hidden corners of the city you will be able to discover the history of Venice, through its prominent architectural sights. Admire the Bovolo Staircase, a Renaissance masterpiece, and one of Venice's finest architectural jewels; this fascinating and complex spiral staircase is part of the Palazzo Contarini del Bovolo and dates from 1499. It is tucked away in a small courtyard close to Campo Manin. Before heading back towards Saint Mark's Square, you will make a stop close to the Rialto Bridge, the oldest bridge across the Grand Canal and discover what made it the historical centre of the commercial area of the city. Then enjoy a relaxing gondola ride along the Grand Canal and minor canals. Admire Venice from this amazing point of view, witness its magnificent architecture and whilst gliding under its bridges, discover secret entrances to the elegant Palaces and hidden corners. This two-hour tour ends in Saint Moisè Square, just a short walk from Saint Mark's Square. (B)
Today marks the end of your Venice City Break. Following breakfast at hotel check-out and end of our services. An optional transfer to the airport/railway or cruise pier can be booked on request. (B)