Rialto Bridge, Venice

An ex-expats guide to Venice…

Travelled in: Multiple trips between 2015 – 2017

Being an ex-expat of the Veneto region in Italy I get asked a lot for my best Venice recommendations. I lived one hour out of Venice, so managed to visit multiple times during my time living in Italy. This means of course I have plenty of tips and hidden gems to share with you, so enjoy…


Where to Eat in Venice…

My number one favourite thing to do in any city is find great places to eat! I am a bit of a foodie and love trying local restaurants and authentic cuisines. Venice restaurants can be SO hit and miss. There are a plenty of tacky touristy places that overcharge you for really crappy food. If unsure you should check trip advisor or go by recommendations people give you. Sadly in Venice there is quite a high possibility you might leave disappointed or completely ripped off. Some restaurants I highly recommend are…

 

Osteria Al Bacco – I could not recommend Osteria Al Bacco more, it is my go to restaurant in Venice. If like me you are a big fan of seafood, you need to check this one out. The menu is full of amazing pastas, risotto, meats and traditional Venetian dishes. It’s not crazy expensive either, you could expect to pay around €25 for a meal with a drink. Osteria Al Bacco is located in my favourite area in Venice, the old ghetto. In the sunshine it is the best place to sit, eat, drink and people watch whilst admiring the beautiful canal views. Everyone I have taken to this restaurant has loved it. It would be best to book as it can get really busy, and also has varying opening hours.

 

Trattoria Alla MadonnaThis is the place to go to try some traditional and authentic Italian food. Squid Ink is a typical food of the area and Alla Madonna serve an amazing Squid Ink pasta! Alla Madonna is located right next to the Rialto bridge, make sure you check it out.

Ai Tre Arche – This restaurant is a winner if you want cheap and cheerful tasty food. The menu is extensive and offers something for everyone. Their special SCOGLIONE is a must try. If you like seafood, you like pasta and pizza and want them all at the same time, then this is the dish you need to order. The Scoglione combines all my favourite things in one dish and it was incredible! The outside tables also offer a pretty decent view of the three arch bridge…

Other recommendations I have been given by my local friends and fellow tourists are…

Osteria Alla Vedova, Osteria Bancogira and Das Moros Fresh Pasta. These are all on my hit list for my next visit!


Where to Drink in Venice…

Al Timon – An amazing bar, again in my favourite area of Venice, the old ghetto. It has a unique selling point in that it has a boat outside where you can sit and enjoy your aperitivo. Super cool setting for a spritz on a nice day!

 

Osteria Al Squero – This beautiful gem of a bar is the place to go to mingle with the locals. It is located adjacent to the “Squero” (aka goldola making factory) and it is a perfect place to enjoy an apperitvo in the early evening. There are limited tables inside, so everyone sits on the wall outside which has a great view over the canal to the Squero where you can watch the Gondolas being made and repaired.


Things To Do in Venice…

I wont state the obvious places as I am sure The Rialto Bridge and St Marks Square are already on your hit list. The places I am about to recommend you check out are slightly off the main tourist track and definitely worth a visit!

Aqua Alta, Venice

 

Liberia Aqua Alta – Even if you are not a reader this book store is worth checking out! There are books piled floor to ceiling, displayed in all sorts of interesting visual ways. There are various rooms to squeeze your way through (as it is very small) and a very instragrammable courtyard at the back!

 

Venice Fish Market (Mercati Di Rialto) – You might find this a bit of a weird one, but I just found the fish market a really cool spot. Granted it was quite smelly, but there was something very authentic about a visit here. Being a city built on the water, obviously you have the added benefit of being able to buy straight out of the sea fresh seafood. This is where all the locals shop and definitely the best place to buy your fish if you are planning on cooking whilst in Venice.

 

Doges PalaceLocated right next door to St Marks Cathedral it is surprising that a lot of people miss off the Doges Palace on a trip to Venice. I didn’t visit it until one of my most recent visits to the city, but I am glad I did as not only is it a beautiful bit of architecture, it is also a building that played a big part in Venetian history. At one point in time it was actually the home of the Venetian government. There are some really cool tours you can do around the palace, the bridge of sighs and St Marks Cathedral, which I wish I had taken part in.

Glass Tea House by Hiroshi Sugimoto – Over on the island of San Giorgio Maggiore you can find a little slice of Japan. For the 2014 Biennalle Hiroshi Sugimoto designed a glass tea house. Tea ceremonies are a big custom in Japan and the artist wanted to express the care that goes in to one of these ceremonies from this exhibit. Today it is used as an events space for activities and talks.


The Best View Points in Venice…

 

San Giorgio Bell Tower – I would rate this as my number one view in Venice! It require a little bit of effort to get to, but it is worth it. In my opinion it is an absolute MUST DO if you really want to understand how amazing this city is from above. The above picture explains for itself why you should make the journey to San Giorgio and pay the €5 entrance fee to go up this tower…

 

Ponte Dell’Accademia – This is by far my favourite bridge view in Venice. I have so many pictures here. I love standing here watching the boats pass along the canal.

 

Basilica di Santa Maria Della Salute – My favourite church in Venice. It is such an iconic and beautiful building. There are plenty of churches to explore in Venice, but this is up there with being the most impressive.

Venice

 

Zattere – I love this area of Venice. From the waterfront you get an amazing view of the lagoon looking over to Giudecca island. Zattere always feels much quieter than the rest of the island, so it is a good place to escape the tourists.


Whatever you get up to in Venice, I hope you have a fabulous trip… Please feel free to comment below if you have any suggestions for me next time I visit Venice 🙂

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