Meet a guide and group at a central location on St. Mark’s Square, then walk past the lines and enter the soaring gates of St. Mark’s Basilica. Follow your guide to the most important parts of the basilica, often called the “Golden Church” for the gleaming mosaics that cover much of the ceiling and walls.
Highlights of St. Mark’s Basilica include the church’s golden dome, a treasury of remarkable artifacts, and the presbytery, whose altarpiece is encrusted with pearls, sapphires, emeralds, and garnets.
Following your time in St. Mark’s Basilica, continue a short distance to the Doges’ Palace, once the residence of the powerful rulers who controlled the Republic of Venice. See the Doges’ elegant apartments and public rooms, with masterpiece artwork throughout the building. Don’t miss the grand Scala d’Oro, or golden staircase, and the golden ceiling of the Sala de Maggior Consiglio, where Venice’s great council would meet to decide the fate of the island republic.
This 3-hour tour concludes at the Doges’ Palace.