VENICE TRAVEL GUIDE ON A BUDGET
If there is one place in the world that screams romantic, it is Venice. With the winding streets, world-famous canals dating back to centuries and a ride across them on gondolas, Venice is undoubtedly true to the much popular title of one of the most romantic cities in the world. If anyone who has ever wished to travel had one city in their bucket list, it is Venice. But on the other hand, Venice is extremely expensive so I thought of sharing a guide on Budget trip to Venice.
What makes the city different among all the other famous ones in Europe is that people can come here for their honeymoon, friends outing, family trip or backpack. There is no restriction as to who can visit Venice for what purpose. Everyone can come here and if planned properly, enjoy as much as they want to. The city is a package. It offers beauty, history, yummy food, and whatnot. But there is one drawback to all the amazing things Venice has to offer.
It is a little over expensive. Not only will you be spending wads of cash, but the over-tourism plaguing the city will leave you yearning for a proper time at every tourist destination you visit. But our agenda is always to help people work around the annoying nitty-gritty that plague traveling, especially the favorite tourist destinations. You can not only enjoy Venice, but you can enjoy it on a budget.
We have prepared this comprehensive travel guide for you so you know how to plan your trip, do all the major sightseeing and still have money in pocket to visit another European city. So, hop on!
EVERYTHING YOU’LL FIND ON THIS VENICE TRAVEL GUIDE (Budget Trip)
- Duration for Your Venice Trip
- Typical Budget
- The Good, The Bad’s & The In-betweens
- Things to See & Do In Venice
- Where to Stay
- How to Go Around?
- What To Eat & Drink?
- Money-Saving Tips
- Staying Safe In Venice
VENICE TRIP DURATION When you are on a budget trip
If anyone tells you, Venice is a one-day affair, you need to stop talking to them. Well, not literally! We are kidding. In any case, you should never spend a day in Venice as most people do. You should at least be spending two to three nights, so you can observe the city in its magnanimity. Throughout the day, the city is flooded with tourists and if you only do a one-day thing, you will miss the peace that spreads over Venice by the night time. You can adjust the major tourist destinations in two days and for the third one, just wander around the streets and discover more museums as you go by.
Venice is at its peak busyness in summer months and April, so try to avoid those. It is also super-hot, so you wouldn’t want to feel toasted as well. On the other hand, Winters are harsh and will make you lazy. Fall is the best time to visit this city. You should visit September-October if you want perfect weather. In fact, if I recall my budget trip to Venice in June, I hated the weather and the smell of stale water because of the humidity. So I would advise you to opt for winter or August.
TYPICAL COSTS & SUGGESTED BUDGET
As we have already mentioned, Venice isn’t a cheap place to visit. It is a tourist hotspot and the purpose of writing this guide is to shed light on how to manage a trip to Venice in the minimum budget. So the prices are already more than average while On a backpacker’s budget, we suggest you at least keep €68 (USD 76) per day. In this budget, you will be able to stay in a hostel outside the main city (which is cheaper than staying on the mainland), eat as cheap as possible, and get around in the local transportation.
You can spend more or even less than the mentioned budget, but this is what an ideal traveler should have so they can enjoy their trip without getting into the hassle of counting money now and then. A mid-range budget for Venice will be €146 (USD 164) and luxury traveling will cost €286 (USD 321) per day. Our suggestion? Stick to the basics. Spending loads of money in Venice comes easy. Also, check out other Destinations if you are planing a budge trip to Europe.
THE GOOD’S, THE BAD’S AND THE IN-BETWEENS
We don’t want to scare you with this heading, but it is indeed a fact that every place in the world has its good and bad. Venice is a favorite destination for many, but it does have some negatives you should be prepared for in advance.
Let’s start with the good ones.
What You’ll Like (or love) About Venice:
History – If you are someone who enjoys places that exist for centuries, Venice is your place to be. The old-world roads, streets and the museums take you back ages.
Romantic Vibe – Need we say more? You just have to step into the city and we are sure you will understand why it is so famous. The vibe, the atmosphere, the architecture and everything else exudes love and romance. The place will make you go all giddy.
Endless Walking Down The Street – When we say endless, we mean it. You might decide to wander around for seconds, but those seconds turn into minutes and hours. The city has loads of museums and other attractions, but what takes the prize is the streets and the fun you get while strolling. Stay overnight and enjoy a peaceful walk.
Canals – Bridges & Canals are the sole reasons people go to visit Venice. Indeed, the place is all about them.
What You Might Not Like About Venice:
Overcrowded – We already gave you a heads-up, Venice is filled with tourists. They are at every nook and cranny. They are everywhere you go. The city was the birthplace of tourism and even though you find lots and lots of history, you won’t find any culture. To those who want to have a breather and meet locals, your wish will always remain a wish.
Too Expensive– Everything they say about Venice being expensive is true. This city isn’t for those who are meager or are traveling on a strict budget. Even when you are on a decent budget, you wouldn’t want to stay for more than two days. So, if you are going, expect to spend a lot of money here and there.
Food – While the food might be something a lot of people debate on; it is a consensus that Venice’s food isn’t good. There might be a few places that serve delicious food, but more often than not, you won’t remember eating anything good.
THINGS TO SEE & DO IN VENICE
Let’s to the part we are sure you all were waiting for, the list of must-visit places. Here they are:
- The Piazza San Marco
This one place houses many other tourist attractions. It isn’t only the home to famous Venice highlights like the Doge’s Palace, the National Archaeological Museum, the basilica, and its bell tower, but is also the largest piazza in Venice. It is a popular hanging spot for Venetians as well. When you approach it from the waterside, you will get to see the glory of beautiful buildings and the history of the place.
- Murano Island
Murano Island is close to Venice, so you wouldn’t have to travel a lot to reach it. But it isn’t a place worth missing. It is famous for the glass blowers and you will have a fun afternoon watching all the glass being blown. Be aware that the souvenirs here are expensive, so do not buy them.
- Peggy Guggenheim Collection
With works from more than 200 talented artists, there are countless massive pieces of art by expressionists, abstract artists, and surrealists. You go to a world of absolute magic. You will have to buy a ticket to see the collection. The entry fee is around €16.50 (USD 18.50). It’s open daily (except Tuesdays) from 10 am-6 pm.
- Lido Island
If you get tired of roaming around the ever-bustling Venice, Lido is the place to go. There are a lot of picturesque canals that will definitely make it to your Instagram and you can relax on the beach as well. You will also get cafes, bars and restaurants here and the Island is only a 2-minute water bus ride from Venice.
- Venetian Markets
The markets of Venice are just as amazing as the local markets anywhere around the world. Also, if you do not want to buy overpriced food, you can buy even more delicious food here at a fraction of the cost otherwise. You can go in the morning to see fishermen catching fish and can later have a fresh lunch as well.
- Campanile di San Marco
Do you know about the original Bell Tower of St. Mark? This one is a perfect replica of that. After paying the admission fee around €13 ($14.50), you will be able to climb up to see the inner workings and have a beautiful panoramic view of the city.
- Boat Tour
There is no need to tell you this, but take a city-wide boat tour so you can capture the essence of Venice at its prime.
- National Archaeological Museum
No visit to a place is fulfilled without going to its museums. Even though it is small, but the National Archaeological Museum has a collection of Roman historical evidence, Greek sculptures and much more that dates back to the 1st century BC. We wouldn’t ever recommend you skipping out on this one. The tickets will cost you €4 ($4.50).
- Correr Civic Museum
Another museum in the list, but this one has a collection of artifacts and art that will walk you through Venice’s rare-known history. It also has some artifacts from Napoleon and other royal homes. You will get access to ancient statues, primitive maps, ceiling frescoes and religious paintings that will leave you at the cost of €20 ($22).
- Jewish Ghetto
Located in the North-west of Venice, the Jewish Ghetto is the world’s first ghetto alleged to have established in 1516. It has a history of being Jews captured by the night and only allowed to roam a little during the day. Despite the disturbing history, the place is now lively and has museums, local shops, and synagogues worth visiting. It is often overlooked by tourists, so we recommend you must visit it.
- Grand Canal
This is one place we cannot miss from the list, even if we want to. But why would we? The Grand Canal is the largest of all Venice’s magnificent canals and it goes past four romantic bridges, a complete town, and several palazzos. If you are on a strict budget, get a seat on Vaporetto or hire a gondola and enjoy the splendor of Venice as you pass by this Canal.
A day-time gondola ride is priced at €80 and goes up to €100 after 7 pm. The entire ride is for around 30-40 minutes.
- Bridge Of Sighs
The beautiful white limestone bridge is rumored to have received this name when the death-row prisoners would pause to sigh while crossing it. It is alleged that this place was their final glimpse of Venice while going for their execution. Though we still don’t know if it is true or not, it is worth visiting. You get a peek of the Renaissance architecture. You can book a gondola ride to pass through it and have a peek on how it looks like.
- Doge’s Palace
Doge’s Palace is a humongous mansion, which was once the residence of Doge – the ruler of Venice. The archways and the arcades outside are impressive and the lavish rooms and historical relics inside will leave you in awe. You can buy tickets online for €19 and get access to the Museo Correr, Museo Archeologico Nazionale and Monumental Rooms of the Biblioteca Nazionale Marciana.
WHERE TO STAY?
Finding accommodation in Venice is one of the hardest things you will ever have to do in your travels. As already iterated several times, it is not only expensive, but it is also a little difficult to find a place to stay in summers. To find a better deal and a reasonable place to stay, it is recommended to venture off the mainland. You can go to Agoda.com, Booking.com and Hostel World to check out reasonable places as per your budget.
Staying at the island of Lido will save you a good deal of money as well.
HOW TO GO AROUND?
The charm of the city is when you are walking around. Until and unless you want to cross the water to get to someplace, expect to only walk to reach your destination. You can cross the canals easily by using bridges, which are a part of every canal in its entirety.
The other two mediums of going around Venice include Vaporetto and Water Taxi. Vaporetto can get you anywhere you want in around €7.50 for 75 minutes. Depending on how much you want to use them and how long you are staying, you can buy day, two-day, three-day tickets and so on. On the other hand, private Water Taxis are even costlier than the Vaporetto. Unless you are in a hurry or you have luggage that you can’t tag along otherwise, there is no need to book one. If you want to call them to your hotel, you will have to pay extra.
Venice is small and easily accessible, so the best way is to cover the places on foot as much as possible.
WHAT TO EAT AND DRINK?
We can’t help you here much, as have already told you Venice is horrible when it comes to food. No matter how pricier it gets, your appetite to eat something super yummy won’t be fulfilled. Try going to local markets, like the food, there is generally organic, catch of the day or much better in taste.
Do your research when deciding what sort of food, you want to eat and never believe a waiter outside any restaurant trying to sell you their ‘oh-so-yummy’ food.
Venice isn’t for party animals. Or, if you are looking for a place where you can dance your trip away, Venice might not be for you. Unlike the other cities in Italy, this one offers a much peaceful night time. Strolling around the sleepier town at night is its highlight. The city gets much quieter at night, starting as early as 9 pm. In the center of the city, you will majorly find quiet restaurants and bars.
If you want to enjoy the nightlife anyway, the area around Campo Santa Margherita in the Dorsoduro neighborhood offers the best one. You will find some happenings, clubs, bars and a lot of other stuff to do.
MONEY SAVING TIPS FOR YOUR VENICE TRIP while you are low on budget
Venice is always going to be expensive, so no matter what month you have planned, it will remain the same. What you can do at your end is be wise about the money and adopt a few ways through which you can save bucks here and there.
Here are some tips through which you can control your expenses during a budget trip to Venice, Italy
Make Your Food – While that might sound weird to many and you might question; who goes on a vacation and cook food? But the reality is that food is one of the biggest costs you will incur in Venice. There are many small markets around the city where you can buy cheese, veggies, fruit and a lot of other stuff that you can use to make your meals at a fraction of the cost.
Walk, Walk, Walk – Venice is beautiful and it is small. You don’t have to rent a ride. Just with a leisurely strolling here and there you can cover most of the places.
Venezia Unica Pass – If you are interested in attractions and history and are going to visit a lot of museums, buy this pass. It will save the money you will be spending separately to buy all the tickets.
Tap Water – Venice’s tap water is pure and safe to drink. All you need is a water bottle and you will be good to go. If you spend money on bottled water, you will mount up a huge amount that you can easily do without.
Couchsurf – If you are someone who is okay meeting new people and staying with strangers, do not spend a dime on your accommodation. Other than the food, your accommodation is one of your biggest costs and if you can use Couchsurfing to find locals to host you for free, you will be in for a treat.
Hostels: – If you aren’t a fan of Couchsurfing, you can always prefer getting a bed in a dorm room of Hostel. There are many hostels in Venice which can offer you a room for 20 – 30 Euros per night. The best bet here is to opt for a standard hostel which is located in the heart of Venice since it will cut down your travel cost considering you are backpacking on a trip that you have budgeted for Venice. The best part of hostels is that you can find free breakfast or you could cook in the shared kitchen to control your spends considering that you don’t want to exhaust your money in Venice
Free Walking Tours Venice 2020 – Venice Free Walking Tour has a few tours that take you around the historical places on foot for free. All you have to do is to book in advance and show up. That’s it. It is a great way to sight-see and saves money as well but regardless of being on a budget trip, you should give the organizers a good tip of 10 euro at least.
STAYING SAFE IN VENICE
This is one of the most important things to consider whenever you are traveling. People generally have the perception that Europe isn’t safe and there is a lot of pickpocketing and theft involved. While that is true for many European cities, the same cannot be said for Venice. It is a very safe place to travel, but you just have to be aware of petty theft. Just be vigilant at crowded places and vaporettos.
One thing you should know is, if you are coming during the winter months, you might be at a risk of acqua alta (high water) during which the streets of Venice are flooded due to the rise in ocean levels. For this, choose a destination that is located close to the upper part of the town.
Some other general safety tips include keeping copies of all your documents. Moreover, always remember to buy yourself a travel insurance that covers all the basics. In case of any emergency or serious theft, you will be able to secure insurance.
In the end, Venice is a fun city. Just be good with the locals, do not be rude and do not ruin the environment. Rest assured, you will have the time of your life.
Follow me on Instagram as well