Venice ATTRACTIONS See all

Venice Islands Tours

Venice is made up of over 100 small islands, but generally “the Venice islands” refers to the three most famous outlying islands in the Venetian lagoon: Murano, Burano, and Torcello. Murano, just north of Venice proper, has been the center of Venice’s famous glass-making industry since 1291, and the island’s expert glassblowers still handcraft stunning pieces of Murano glass today. Farther north, Burano has quiet canals lined with brightly painted fishermen’s houses and is home to Venice’s traditional lace artisans. Its neighboring island of Torcello, first settled in 452, is believed to be the first populated island in the Venetian lagoon.

The Basics
The only way to visit Venice’s islands is by boat. By far the best option for avoiding the hassle and delays of the vaporettos (ferries) is booking a private motorboat tour. Tours enable you to make the most of your time on each island—visiting the glass factories on Murano, lace-making demonstrations on Burano, and the historic sights on Torcello—without having to navigate the complicated and crowded interisland public transportation system. Choose a half-day sightseeing tour if you are pressed for time, or a more leisurely full-day Venice cruise to explore the Grand Canal and lagoon islands at a more relaxed pace.

Things to Know Before You Go
  • Be sure to bring your camera to capture the picturesque glassblowing demonstrations on Murano and traditional lace-making on Burano.
  • Murano glass and Burano lace are famous for their impeccable quality—and prices reflect that. Be wary of glass or lace shops that advertise “bargain” prices, which often means low-quality goods imported from outside Italy.
  • Murano’s glass shops are known for their hard-sell techniques, so always book your Venice islands tour through a reputable company to avoid unpleasant strong-arming tactics.

How to Get There
From St. Mark’s Square (Piazza San Marco), take vaporetto 4.1 from the San Zaccaria stop, or a private water taxi from the Grand Canal boat launch near the Doge’s Palace, to Murano. From there, local water buses or taxis run to Burano and Torcello.

When to Get There
The Venice islands are most crowded in summer. The crowds thin considerably from November through February, though chilly temperatures can mean a less pleasant boat trip across the lagoon.

Torcello in Literature
Over the decades, a number of famous artists, musicians, and Hollywood stars have spent time on the quiet island of Torcello. Ernest Hemingway, for one, wrote parts of “Across the River and into the Trees” during his stay on the island in 1948.

Tours & Tickets

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Venice Cruise by Luxury Motorboat: Grand Canal and Basilica of San Giorgio Maggiore, Venice, null
TVRM_SORTED : true ESSENTIAL : 1 ADMISSION : 3

Venice Cruise by Luxury Motorboat: Grand Canal and Basilica of San Giorgio Maggiore

4.5 star rating: Recommended 5 Reviews

Speed through Venice by luxury motorboat to discover the sights of the Grand Canal and the Basilica of San Giorgio Maggiore. As a knowledgeable guide drives, ...  Read more

Location: Venice, Italy
Duration: 2 hours (approx.)

From USD $116.51
Venice Lagoon Islands Sailing Cruise from Venice, Veneto, Cultural Tours
TVRM_SORTED : true ESSENTIAL : 1 ADMISSION : 3

Venice Lagoon Islands Sailing Cruise from Venice

The Venice lagoon is one of the most important lagoon landscapes in Europe. Traveling by boat is the best way to observe the unique environment up close. With ...  Read more

Location: Venice, Italy
Duration: Flexible

From USD $475.54
Murano, Burano and Torcello Half-Day Sightseeing Tour, Venice, Sailing Trips
TVRM_SORTED : true ESSENTIAL : 1 ADMISSION : 5

Murano, Burano and Torcello Half-Day Sightseeing Tour

3.5 star rating: Worth doing 4285 Reviews

Explore three famous islands of the Venetian Lagoon – Murano, Torcello and Burano – on a half-day sightseeing excursion by motorboat. Accompanied by a local ...  Read more

Location: Venice, Italy
Duration: 4 hours 30 minutes (approx.)

From USD $23.78
Murano Glass Experience plus Visit to a Burano Lace Laboratory, Venice, Day Trips
TVRM_SORTED : true ESSENTIAL : 1 ADMISSION : 5

Murano Glass Experience plus Visit to a Burano Lace Laboratory

4.5 star rating: Recommended 39 Reviews

Meet you local guide in Venice city center, then board a private boat and admire the lagoon of Venice. Stop in Murano island to see S. Maria and ...  Read more

Location: Venice, Italy
Duration: 5 hours (approx.)

From USD $41.61
Private Excursion by Typical Venetian Motorboat to Murano, Burano and Torcello, Venice, Day Cruises
TVRM_SORTED : true ESSENTIAL : 1 ADMISSION : 5

Private Excursion by Typical Venetian Motorboat to Murano, Burano and Torcello

5 star rating: Highly Recommended 45 Reviews

Departing from the heart of Venice you will visit the most beautiful islands of the lagoon: Murano, Burano and Torcello. A private boat tour with friendly ...  Read more

Location: Venice, Italy
Duration: 4 hours (approx.)

From USD $130.77
Islands of Venice Murano Burano and Torcello, Venice, Sailing Trips
TVRM_SORTED : true ESSENTIAL : 1 ADMISSION : 5

Islands of Venice Murano Burano and Torcello

3.5 star rating: Worth doing 11 Reviews

Explore the islands of the Venetian Lagoon on a 4-hour cruise around Murano, Burano, and Torcello. Jump off to discover the glass-blowing workshops of Murano. ...  Read more

Location: Venice, Italy
Duration: 4 hours (approx.)

From USD $23.78
Venice Day Trip by High-Speed Catamaran from Pula, Pula, Day Cruises
TVRM_SORTED : true ESSENTIAL : 1 ADMISSION : 5

Venice Day Trip by High-Speed Catamaran from Pula

2 star rating: It was OK, but could have been better 1 Review

Venice is, without a doubt, one of the most glorified and romantic cities in the world and thus one of the most desired destinations. A pleasant 3-hour boat ...  Read more

Location: Pula, Croatia
Duration: 14 hours (approx.)

From USD $83.22
6-Day Small Group Italy Tour of Rome Florence Pisa Venice, Venice, Day Trips
TVRM_SORTED : true ESSENTIAL : 1 ADMISSION : 5

6-Day Small Group Italy Tour of Rome Florence Pisa Venice

5 star rating: Highly Recommended 1 Review

Six fantastic days to enjoy the best of Italy, from Rome, Florence, Pisa, and Venice . Take this opportunity to visit some amazing places with this small ...  Read more

Location: Venice, Italy
Duration: 6 to 7 days

From USD $1,099.00
6-Day Small-Group Private Tour from Rome to Venice, Rome, Multi-day Tours
TVRM_SORTED : true ESSENTIAL : 1 ADMISSION : 5

6-Day Small-Group Private Tour from Rome to Venice

Six beautiful days to enjoy the Best of Italy, from Rome, Florence, Pisa, and Venice. Take this opportunity to visit some amazing places with your private ...  Read more

Location: Rome, Italy
Duration: 6 days (approx.)

From USD $1,199.00
Explore the Venetian Lagoon: Murano, Burano and Torcello Islands Half-Day Tour, Venice, Multi-day ... 
TVRM_SORTED : true ESSENTIAL : 1 ADMISSION : 5

Explore the Venetian Lagoon: Murano, Burano and Torcello Islands Half-Day Tour

4 star rating: Recommended 35 Reviews

A half day shared tour by motorboat to discover the marvels of the lagoon surrounding Venice: Murano, Burano and Torcello islands.There will be a multilingual ...  Read more

Location: Venice, Italy
Duration: 4 hours (approx.)

From USD $23.78

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