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Venice, Italy: Your Essential Weekend Itinerary

Paris may be the city of love, but there is no denying that Venice comes a close second when talking about romantic destinations. This Italian city built on the water conjures up images of gondola rides for two through the canals, incredible Italian food shared with a bottle of wine, and of course, the masked Carnival of Venice. Historically a haven for artists and pleasure-seekers, Venice is truly unique – and makes for some incredible travel photos!

Eat Like A Local At Trattoria Alla Rampa

For those who are constantly searching for food that feels truly authentic, you can’t do much better than Trattoria Alla Rampa. This tiny spot serves mainly local workers, opening at the crack of dawn (4:30 am) to serve the fishermen, but staying open through lunch. If there’s a spot available at noon, diners can sample the ‘workers menu’: thirteen euro for pasta, main, wine, and coffee. If it’s simply too packed, however, the later menu at 1pm is still excellent value for classic and simple Venetian fare like rici e bisi and spaghetti alle vongole or rich black squid ink pasta for adventurous (and Instagrammable) eating.

Look Over The City From The Campanile Di San Marco

Every first-time visitor to Venice heads to the Piazza San Marco, the main public square of Venice. While the view from the ground is beautiful, the best way to really see the square (and the rest of the city) is from the top of the Campanile Di San Marco. The tower is topped with a golden statue of Archangel Gabriel, and originally housed five bells that rang out to convey different messages to the populace of Venice (for example, that an execution was taking place). Now, a single bell remains that tolls twice a day, but the view from the top is as spectacular as ever - and well worth the climb.

Watch The Sun Set From The Rialto Bridge

Venice is beautiful in the daylight, but it is stunning as night falls. It's usually a little cooler and less crowded! While there are dozens of bridges spanning the waterways in this city, including the famous Bridge of Sighs, the Rialto Bridge is the oldest bridge to span the Grand Canal. While you are unlikely to have it to yourself (as one of the biggest attractions in Venice), the view is incredible. Watch the gondolas glide underneath as the sun sets over the city - or, for early birds, catch the sunrise instead! Watching the changing light over the water takes this spot to the next level.

Enjoy The Freshest Seafood At Alle Testiere

Although Venice is home to some of the best seafood pasta in the world, it also hosts a multitude of overpriced, bland tourist traps – but thankfully, Alle Testiere isn’t one of them. It is a restaurant that you would do well to book in advance, though, as the space is tiny and deservedly popular. There is no set menu because Bruno Cavagni, the Chef, designs the dishes each day based on the best offerings at the fish market. Alle Testiere serves elegant versions of Venetian classics, from black risotto of cuttlefish to turbot fillet in citrus sauce. The dishes are paired with an expansive wine list, and dinner is served at two sittings. The later one being the more popular, as it allows for a more leisurely meal.

While Venice is packed with historic landmarks, don’t spend too much time on the architecture of this floating city and forget to see the rest. From the markets to the famous glass blowing and masquerade masks, there are plenty of options for those visitors who would rather not spend their weekend away waiting in line after line. What are some of your favorite things to do and see around Venice? Comment and let us know!

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