The Discover Venice & Gondola Ride tour starts from the Tourist Information Office (Palazzina Selva – Venice Pavilion). You will be accompanied by a guide as you walk through the picturesque streets of Venice and, depending on the day of the week, the tour will be conducted in English, French or German.
You will see the area between Piazza San Marco and the Rialto Bridge with your guide. Along the route you will see Venice’s celebrated opera house Teatro La Fenice (‘The Phoenix’). One of the most famous theaters in Europe, it has witnessed many famous operatic premieres. The building has had a troubled, intriguing history, having been burnt to the ground and rebuilt more than once. The structure you will see opened in 2003 after being destroyed in a fire in 1996.
You will also view one of the finest examples of Renaissance architecture in Venice, the Scala del Bovolo. This beautiful 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.
You will also have the chance to have a good look at the lovely Rialto Bridge, the oldest bridge across the Grand Canal. When it was completed in 1591, the design was considered so daring that critics predicted that it would not survive for long. However, the bridge has defied its detractors by standing proudly for more than 400 years and becoming one of the most famous structures of Venice.
After the walk, relax yourselves with a 35-minute gondola ride (up to six people per gondola) on the Grand Canal (S. Maria della Salute area) and minor canals (Fenice area). There is no commentary, but you can admire the lovely old buildings along the Canal and watch the bustling activity on this busy waterway.
The tour ends at the landing stage at Vallaresso (Dogana). You will then need to make your own arrangements for getting to your next destination.