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Best of Venice Tour including Doge’s Palace & St Mark’s Basilica Visit

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Key Highlights

  • See the very best of a city in just one day!
  • Visit the famous Doge’s Palace and St. Mark’s Basilica
  • Go off the beaten track and see some of the backstreets of Venice on your walking tour
  • Tour is led by expert local guide
  • Activity Schedule
    When does it run?

    Daily except Sunday


    4 hours approximately

    Start time


    Meeting Point

    Piazza San Marco, Venice.
    Please arrive at the meeting point at least 15 minutes prior to the tour start time.

    Ending Point

    same as meeting point

  • Overview & Itinerary


    This tour provides the perfect introduction to Venice. The first stop for many visitors to Venice is Piazza San Marco. This large square is at the very heart of the city and is home to the famous Basilica di San Marco and the distinctive pink and white Doge's Palace. Step back to the glory days of Venice when you visit the most famous and important buildings in this fabulous city.

    Led by an expert guide, explore the splendid Palazzo Ducale (Doge’s Palace), which for centuries represented the hub of Venetian political power. See the magnificent council chambers embellished with stunning artworks and climb the sumptuous ‘Golden Staircase’.

    Marvel at the golden ceiling mosaics and marble inlays in the Basilica San Marco (St Mark’s Basilica), and gasp when you see the gem-encrusted altar screen and the glittering contents of the Treasury.

    You will also explore the back streets of Venice, home to beautiful canals, churches and piazzas that enthrall visitors. One of those you will see was the home of Marco Polo, while there you will learn more about the famous explorer.


    Your Venice tour starts from St. Mark’s Square. Accompanied by a guide you will set out on your walking tour which introduces many of the most exciting attractions in Venice.

    At St. Mark's Square see the Basilica, Bell and Clock tower and more as your guide tells you the fascinating stories behind these buildings. Move on to explore the dynamic Campo Santa Maria Formosa with its splendid Gothic Palaces.

    Learn about the renowned trade schools of Venice which laid the foundations of the great mercantile empire at the Scuola di San Marco. The sights with enriching historical narrations enlighten you on how illustrious Venetians, the likes of Marco Polo, and more common citizens made this stone city a lively and magical place. Walk by Marco Polo's House and enjoy tales of this legendary globe-trotting Venetian. Praise the Church of San Giovanni e Paolo, known as the Pantheon of Venice.

    Next, you will walk to the Doge's Palace for your tour of what is arguably Venice’s most important building, the Doge's Palace, the seat of the Government for centuries. See the lavish chambers and enter areas that were closed to everyone but a few trusted men of the republic. See the Chancellors Office where secret documents were kept and the Torture Chamber where enemies of the state would be tortured before the state inquisitors. You will also see the "I Piombi" Prisons, where among others, Casanova was imprisoned.

    After the palace visit, enjoy a guided tour of the interior of St. Mark's Basilica, the greatest of Venice’s monuments. Built in the 9th century, this huge Basilica (or Cathedral) is one of the world’s best examples of Byzantine architecture. Marvel at the stunning golden ceiling mosaics telling the story of the Gospels over an expanse of 8,000 square meters. View the incredible San Marco Treasury – a vast assemblage of gold, silver, glass and other precious materials.

    Save your greatest admiration for the Basilica’s most precious possession – the eye-popping Pala d'Oro, an exquisite altar screen made from hundreds of pieces of enamel stuck onto gold leaf and enriched with all kinds of gems: sapphires, garnets, pearls, emeralds, amethysts, rubies, agate and topaz.

    Your tour ends at St Mark’s Square.

  • Inclusions & Exclusions


    • Walking tour of Venice
    • Guided Tour is English, French or Spanish (as per the option chosen)
    • Entrance fee to the Doge's Palace and St. Mark's Basilica


    • Hotel Pick up and Drop off
    • Meals
  • Please note & Additional info

    Please note

    Please call the activity operator at least 24 hours prior to start of the tour to confirm all departure details.

    Passengers have to reach the meeting point 15 minutes prior to departure.

    Voucher information: You must print and surrender a paper version of your booking voucher for this activity (showing your voucher on a smartphone is not accepted). No refund can be given for customers without a printed copy of their voucher.

    Additional info

    The confirmation voucher includes the local activity operator’s contact details and local telephone numbers at the destination. They will happily answer any logistical questions you may have.