Grand Canal Tours

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Venice is a city built on water, and the Grand Canal (Canale Grande) is its bustling main street. Lined with sumptuous Venetian palaces and crowded with gondolas, water taxis, and vaporetti (public ferries), this thoroughfare is a feast for the senses. The Grand Canal winds its way through the central neighborhoods of Venice from the Santa Lucia train station to St. Mark’s Square (Piazza San Marco), passing under the iconic Rialto Bridge along the way, and functions as the scenic main artery for transporting both people and goods around the City of Canals.

The Basics
A sail down the Grand Canal is a trip through centuries of Venetian history, as historic palaces dating from the 13th to the 18th centuries rise out of the water along most of the route. Though stretches of the canal are lined with walkways, many of the important landmarks can be seen only from the water, so a small-group Grand Canal boat tour or combination walking-and-canal tour is by far the best way to go. For a historical tour of the canal, opt for a daytime sightseeing tour so you can see the ornate facades of Venice’s famous palaces. For a romantic journey, choose a moonlit gondola ride. And for a truly Venetian experience, opt for a gondola ride with a serenade!

Things to Know Before You Go
  • Most Grand Canal gondola rides begin or end in St. Mark’s Square, home to St. Mark’s Basilica and the Doge’s Palace, and include a few picturesque minor canals along the way.
  • Alongside Rome and Florence as one of the most popular destinations in Italy, Venice can get extremely crowded. To avoid a long wait at the motor launch, book your Venice tour tickets in advance.
  • The palaces along the Grand Canal have architectural styles that span from the Byzantine to the Renaissance, and are best appreciated with an expert tour guide who can explain their history and importance.
  • Note that Venice and the Grand Canal feature a great number of bridges, many of which are not wheelchair accessible. 

How to Get There
The Grand Canal snakes its way through the center of Venice from the train station to St. Mark’s Square. All of Venice is pedestrian only, so to get from anywhere in the city to the Grand Canal, you must either walk or take a boat.

When to Get There
Venice is lovely all year round, and the Grand Canal is spectacular both by day and night. 

The Islands of Venice
Venice is made up of over 100 small islands, so for a different perspective of this unique city on the water, take a boat tour to one of the quieter outlying islands such as Murano, famous for its glassblowing industry; Burano, known for its lace-making artisans; or Torcello, thought to be the first populated island the in Venetian lagoon.


Location
Address: Venice, Italy
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Hours: Open 24 hours every day
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Admission: Free
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84 Tours & Activities to Experience

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Ca D'oro - Franchetti Gallery Admission Ticket

Purchase your Ca’ D'Oro Franchetti Gallery admission ticket in advance to save time at the gate. Accurately named the “house of gold” or Ca’ d'Oro, this Venetian Gothic styled palace is a treasure trove of Renaissance art. In addition to the Franchetti collection, the museum also houses interesting pieces from churches destroyed during the fall of the Venetian republic as well as an interesting collection of pottery and other relics recovered from the Venetian lagoon.
  • Duration: 1 to 2 hrs
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US$17.78
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  • Duration: 1 to 2 hrs
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US$17.78

Venice Walking Tour and Gondola Ride

Explore the famous sites and hidden charms of Venice on this walking tour, followed by a ride through the city’s canals on an iconic gondola. Follow your local guide through a romantic maze of surrounding backstreets to discover some of Venice’s lesser-known gems. Learn the fascinating history of Venice as you wander through narrow alleys and over stone footbridges, and then hop aboard a Venetian gondola for a leisurely ride along the Grand Canal.
  • Duration: 2.15 to 2.45 hrs
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US$52.14
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  • Duration: 2.15 to 2.45 hrs
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US$52.14

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Venice Gondola Ride and Serenade

Experience Venice in the most Venetian way possible: via a 35-minute shared gondola ride while being serenaded. Choose between an afternoon or evening ride and then hop on the six-person gondola by a gondolier who is clad in traditional garb. Then begin the ride, as part of a group of eight different gondolas, with a singer aboard one of the boats. In addition to the song being sun to you, enjoy the sites of Venice's main landmarks, including the grand Canal and Palazzo Barberino.
  • Duration: 30 minutes
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US$47.50
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  • Duration: 30 minutes
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US$47.50

Classic 30-Minute Gondola Ride

Explore Venice's famous canals on a guided gondola ride through the city. Meander beneath bridges and along quiet, peaceful stretches for 30-minutes in a traditional Venetian boat, taking in sights such as the Rialto Bridge and San Marco Square as you go. Join up to five others—along with your expert gondolier—in enjoying one of Venice's most leisurely and original pastimes, and don't miss this chance to experience the Grand Canal from the water.
  • Duration: 30 minutes
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US$35.92
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  • Duration: 30 minutes
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US$35.92

Venice Gondola Experience

Explore the romantic canals of Venice the way that locals have for centuries on a 30-minute shared gondola ride. Climb aboard one of the ornate carved vessels and settle into your seat as a professional gondolier navigates past ancient palazzos, under footbridges and through scenes of daily life in the captivating city-on-the-sea. It’s a quintessential Venetian experience not to be missed!
  • Duration: 30 minutes
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US$37.07
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  • Duration: 30 minutes
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US$37.07

Small Group Venice In a Day with Basilica San Marco and Doges Palace plus Gondola Ride

First time in Venice? Maximise your time in the city with a full-day itinerary that ticks off all the most memorable attractions. Stroll across the Rialto Bridge and browse the lively Rialto fish market, then hop aboard a traditional gondola for a romantic cruise along the Grand Canal. Next, access St. Mark’s Basilica and gaze down over the city from the cathedral’s rooftop terrace. Finally, enjoy skip-the-line entrance to the grandiose Doge’s Palace. This small-group tour is limited to 15 people ensuring a personalized experience.
  • Duration: 7 hours 30 minutes
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US$149.46
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  • Duration: 7 hours 30 minutes
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US$149.46

Grand Canal Boat Private Tour: Murano and Burano

Glide through some of Venice's most famous waterways with a private 4-hour boat tour of the Grand Canal, Murano, and Burano. Watch glass blowers at work on Murano and lace makers on Burano. Travel by private motor boat along the picturesque Grand Canal.
  • Duration: 4 hours
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US$648.81
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  • Duration: 4 hours
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US$648.81

Venice Gondola Ride and Serenade with Dinner

Feel the romance of a classic Venetian experience with a serenaded gondola ride through Venice’s famed canals, capped off by dinner or lunch at a renowned local eatery. Settle into a traditional gondola boat for a 35-minute ride through the Grand Canal and some of the city’s smaller waterways, while onboard musicians provide a passionate soundtrack of Italian ballads. Savor an authentic Venetian meal at the top-rated Hostaria Ai Coristi Restaurant to conclude your enchanted evening or afternoon tour.
  • Duration: 2 hours
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US$100.80
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  • Duration: 2 hours
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US$100.80

Romantic Gondola Ride for Two

Treat a loved one to the ultimate Venice experience with a private, 30-minute gondola ride along the Grand Canal and smaller side canals. Toast the occasion with a glass of Prosecco while passing elegant Venetian palaces, colorful facades, and some of Venice’s most iconic landmarks. This private gondola tour is perfect for capturing photos of your time in Venice, and both morning and evening departures are available.
  • Duration: 30 minutes
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US$162.20
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  • Duration: 30 minutes
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US$162.20

Venice-in-a-Day Combination Tour Package

If you’re looking to see most of Venice’s well-known sights all in one day, put your trust in this 3.5-hour combination tour package. This package includes a 30-minute gondola ride on the Grand Canal, a 2-hour walking tour of the city, and a 1-hour boat tour along the city’s most secluded canals. Plus, it gives you a skip-the-line privilege at Doge's Palace (Palazzo Ducale) and at St. Mark's Basilica.
  • Duration: 3 hours 30 minutes
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US$144.82
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  • Duration: 3 hours 30 minutes
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US$144.82

Venice Street Food Tour with Local Guide with Local Food Market Visit

Taste your way through the canal city with this 2.5-hour street food tour of Venice. Walk through gorgeous squares, see impressive churches, and visit the bustling Rialto Market. See Campo Santa Margherita, the Grand Canal, Basilica dei Frari, San Polo, and much more. Savor Venetian specialties like cicchetti, buranelli, tramezzini, and tiramisu.
  • Duration: 2 hours 30 minutes
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US$45.18
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  • Duration: 2 hours 30 minutes
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US$45.18

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

Explore the best of Italy on a 6-day tour through Rome, Florence, Pisa, and Venice. See famous landmarks like the Colosseum, the Trevi Fountain, Ponte Vecchio, the Florence Cathedral, the Leaning Tower of Pisa, and much more. Travel between cities by train and admire the passing Italian countryside and enjoy a stress-free trip with all lodging, transfers, entrance tickets, and sightseeing tours included.
  • Duration: 6 to 7 days
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US$1,099.00
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  • Duration: 6 to 7 days
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US$1,099.00

30-minute Private Gondola Ride in Venice

Reserve a classic Venetian experience with a private gondola ride through Venice’s romantic canals. Enjoy a beautifully crafted boat and professional gondolier just for your party as you glide down the Grand Canal and smaller waterways, passing historic palaces and landmarks like Mozart’s home and the Rialto Bridge. Book ahead to guarantee a private ride for you group and avoid the hassle of negotiating a price on the spot.
  • Duration: 30 minutes
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US$26.07
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  • Duration: 30 minutes
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US$26.07

Private Tour: Venice Grand Canal Evening Boat Tour

Spend a delightful evening cruising along the canals of Venice on this private boat tour. Take in the architectural masterpieces that line the Grand Canal and smaller waterways from aboard a comfortable modern water taxi, venturing further than a traditional gondola would allow. Learn about the artistic and cultural history of Venice from your English-speaking guide as you soak in the sights on your choice of a 1-hour or 2-hour ride.
  • Duration: Flexible
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US$405.51
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  • Duration: Flexible
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US$405.51

Venice Grand Canal Small Group 1-Hour Boat Tour

Experience the beauty of Venice by boat with this Grand Canal Tour of the city built on water. Glide through the placid waters past palaces, churches, gardens and bridges as you make your way along the iconic waterway. Then journey into some of the minor canals on this luxury motorboat. Bring the magic of these liquid streets to life on a tour that’s ideal for lovers, photographers and travelers!
  • Duration: 1 hour
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US$55.61
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  • Duration: 1 hour
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US$55.61

Murano by Private Watertaxi Including Glass Blowing Demo with Hotel Pickup

Visit the famed glassblowing island of Murano via private water taxi, and watch glass artisans at work. Explore the seventh century cathedral in Murano's historical center before learning about the skill required to blow glass. Step inside a traditional glass factory for a full demonstration, peruse showrooms, take advantage of discounts on glassware, and slip your foot into a glass slipper. If it's your size, you'll walk away with a specially made souvenir crafted from Venetian glass.
  • Duration: 2 hours
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US$52.14
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  • Duration: 2 hours
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US$52.14

Venice Gondola Serenade

Get swept up in the magical atmosphere of Venice on a serenaded gondola ride through the Grand Canal and smaller, more secluded waterways. A professional gondolier steers you in a traditional, hand-carved Venetian boat, while musicians and singers set the mood by performing classic Italian songs right onboard. It’s a timeless way to experience one of the world’s most romantic cities.
  • Duration: 30 minutes
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US$48.66
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  • Duration: 30 minutes
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US$48.66

Venice Walking Tour and Gondola Ride

Soak up the medieval romance of Venice by land and by sea on this combo walking and gondola tour. Learn about the history of the mighty maritime republic as you explore the famous monuments of St. Mark's Square with a guide, stopping outside St. Mark’s Basilica and the Doge’s Palace. Then, climb aboard a traditional Venetian gondola for a shared ride along the Grand Canal and some of the city’s quieter waterways — a classic Venice experience.
  • Duration: 2 hours 18 minutes
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US$60.25
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  • Duration: 2 hours 18 minutes
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US$60.25

Venice: Gondola Ride and Golden Basilica Tour

Experience two of Venice’s treasures on this combination tour. First, take a gondola ride along the Grand Canal the inner canals of the city. Listen as a professional gondolier shares information and knowledge about the city, or just sit back and take in the view. Next, skip the lines at Saint Mark’s Basilica and learn about its storied history on a guided tour of the ancient church.
  • Duration: 1 hour 30 minutes
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US$60.25
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  • Duration: 1 hour 30 minutes
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US$60.25

Private Gondola Ride

Enjoy a quintessentially Venetian experience with this 30-minute private gondola ride for up to 6 people. Travel through Venice's picturesque canals for great photo opportunities of palaces and a view of the city you can't get any other way.
  • Duration: 30 minutes
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US$162.20
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  • Duration: 30 minutes
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US$162.20

Venice Combination Gondola and Walking Tour

Experience the best of Venice by land and by sea on a 2-hour combo walking and gondola tour. Stroll through the city’s narrow alleyways and historic piazzas with a guide, stopping in front of iconic attractions like the Rialto Bridge, Teatro La Fenice opera house and the mysterious Bovolo Staircase. Then, climb aboard a traditional Venetian gondola for a romantic ride through the city’s canals — a must-do activity when visiting ‘The Floating City!’
  • Duration: 2 hours
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US$56.77
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  • Duration: 2 hours
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US$56.77

Discovering Venetian Waterways by Gondola

Traverse the canals of Venice aboard a traditional gondola with your very own gondolier. Float along narrow waterways and hidden passages, admiring the beauty of one of Italy's most magical cities. Pass beneath centuries-old bridges and take in famous attractions such as St Marks' Bell Tower and the Mozart House from the coziness of your flat-bottomed boat.
  • Duration: 30 minutes
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US$37.07
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  • Duration: 30 minutes
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US$37.07

Venice Grand Canal Boat Tour

Explore Venice the way it was meant to be seen — from the water. On this motor boat tour along the famous Grand Canal, get the best views of ancient palaces and the dazzling monuments of St. Mark's Square, learning the history behind them from a guide. You'll also venture into smaller side canals for a glimpse into daily life in the ‘floating city.’
  • Duration: 1 hour
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US$37.07
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  • Duration: 1 hour
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US$37.07

Hidden Venice Walking Tour and Gondola Ride

Discover the magic and mysteries of Venice from two different perspectives on a combo gondola ride and walking tour. Climb aboard a traditional Venetian gondola for a voyage through the Grand Canal and some smaller, atmospheric canals, passing magnificent palazzos and churches along the way. Then, explore the historic area between St. Mark’s Square and the Rialto Bridge on foot, following a guide through winding backstreets, squares, and marketplaces brimming with character to uncover the hidden stories of Venice.
  • Duration: 2 hours
From
US$56.77
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  • Duration: 2 hours
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US$56.77

Skip-the-Line 30-Minute Grand Canal Gondola Ride in Venice

Experience the history and romance of Venice with a shared 30-minute gondola ride through the city's famous canals. Save time and money by pre-booking your ride, and then relax and take in the scenery as a professional gondolier guides a beautifully handcrafted boat along the palaces of the Grand Canal and through smaller, atmospheric waterways brimming with charm.
  • Duration: 30 minutes
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US$37.07
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  • Duration: 30 minutes
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US$37.07


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