Insider's Guide to Venice

Major attractions, tips and our top things to see and do.

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4.5 star rating: Recommended 6 Reviews

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  • Location:Venice, Italy
  • Duration:Varies

Best Venice Shore Excursion: Small-Group Best of Venice Walking Tour and Grand Canal Taxi Ride

See Venice sights by land and water on this small-group Venice shore excursion sightseeing tour. After a water taxi ride down the Grand Canal, enjoy a Venice walking tour, combining famous attractions with places that many tourist maps leave out! See Rialto Bridge and St Mark's Square, and then skip the line to visit St Mark's Basilica. Numbers are limited to 10 people, ensuring you'll receive personalized attention from your friendly guide.

Keen to see more? Upgrade to include a two-hour tour of Doge's Palace, where you'll see the palace's magnificent public rooms, as well as the Piombi attic prison, which offers rare and limited access to the public.


  • Small-group Venice shore excursion sightseeing tour by land and water
  • See top Venice sights along the Grand Canal on a 1-hour water taxi ride
  • Take a 2-hour walking tour and learn about St Mark's Square and Goldoni Theatre
  • Enjoy skip-the-line entrance to St Mark's Basilica
  • Upgrade to include a 2-hour Doge's Palace tour, and see the Piombi attic prison (usually closed to the public)
  • Covered by Viator's worry-free policy: guaranteed on-time return to your ship

Recent Photos of This Tour

What You Can Expect

Best Venice Shore Excursion: Small-Group Best of Venice Walking Tour and Grand Canal Taxi Ride

Venice Shore Excursion: Small-Group Best of Venice Walking Tour and Grand Canal Taxi Ride

When your cruise ship docks in Venice, enjoy a shore excursion to see the best sights of the city. Your small-group Venice tour starts on the Grand Canal, which meanders past palaces, bridges and open-air markets. You’ll see these attractions on your one-hour guided Grand Canal tour by water taxi, the best way to enjoy the Venice cityscape.

Next, enjoy a small-group walking tour of top Venice attractions and hidden gems. See the external Bovolo staircase, and pass the former home of Marco Polo. Hear about his adventures, and stroll through the lively Campo San Luca and Campo SS Giovanni Paolo squares. Then it’s on to the beautiful Goldoni Theatre, Venice's much-loved opera house, before you reach Rialto Bridge.

Your tour finishes in St Mark's Square. The famous piazza is home to two iconic Venice sights – Doge's Palace and St Mark's Basilica – and your guide will entertain you with tales of both. You'll skip the line outside St Mark's Basilica, and head straight in for a tour.

Upgrade to include a tour of Doge's Palace:
If the tales of Doge's Palace aren't enough to satisfy your curiosity, then upgrade! You can include a unique two-hour Doge's Palace tour in the morning, allowing you to see the magnificent public rooms and the rarely seen Piombi attic prison. Learn about the dark deeds of the Venetian doges, and see the attic prison where Giancomo Casanova was once held captive. Your tour ends at the New Prisons, connected to the palace by the Bridge of Sighs.

Worry-free Shore Excursion:
We will ensure your excursion ends with ample time for you to return to the Venice port for your ship’s departure. In the extremely unlikely event your ship has departed, we will arrange for transportation to the next port-of-call. If your ship is delayed and you are unable to attend this activity, your money will be refunded. See our terms and conditions for full details.

Customer Reviews

5 star rating: Highly Recommended October 2015

Loved the excursion and would recommend it to others who have a short stay in Venice. My only thought is maybe to do the walking tour first and the boat tour last. We where all pretty tired by the last half of the walking tour. My guide was the best! I am going to Santo Domingo in December and will be booking more tours with you!

5 star rating: Highly Recommended July 2015

It was beautiful we had a great time. Thank you.

5 star rating: Highly Recommended June 2015

Our guide Elena spelling correctly? was fabulous! She was very knowledgeable about the sites we saw but also a local Venetian who could give us a glimpse into local life. The trip was broken Into three parts: extensive canal tour, Basicala and walking tour. Each was fascinating in its own right. Highly recommend this tour

5 star rating: Highly Recommended October 2014


5 star rating: Highly Recommended August 2013

We had two guides, one in the Grand Canal water taxi ride and tour and one for the walking tour. The taxi/Grand Canal tour was a great way to see the city and surrounding water ways from inside a boat. We enjoyed all the features and many places we saw. After completion we broke into small groups and went on our tour of St. Mark's and the walking tour. This was wonderful and our guide was very knowledgeable and gave great insight into the history of St. Mark's and plenty of time to look around and soak up the beautiful setting. It was very hot and she did an excellent job of getting us into the rare shade for updates and we walked right in past the long line. After the wonderful tour of St. Mark's we took a back road tour of Venice. Within two or three turns she had us in cooler, less crowded but very historical squares and sights. Within the provided time she delivered us to the main bridge, with the crowds and tips for quick ways back or what to do's. Wonderful end to our 20 day adventure through the Mediterranean. Highly recommend.

2 star rating: It was OK, but could have been better October 2013

The Grand Canal taxi ride was informative. The day was rainy so getting out of the rain was preferable. By the time we started the walking portion of the tour, the rain had stopped. We changed tour guides and while the walking tour guide was friendly and informative after we left the basilica, we did not see the "highlights" of Venice. We visited small out-of-the-way places, not even the Rialto bridge or an explanation of St. Mark's square.

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Tour code: 3731PRTVCESMALL


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