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Discover Venice’s hidden gems on a 2-hour cruise through the city’s secret canals. Watch scenes of daily Venetian life as you glide through the lesser-known neighborhoods of Cannaregio, Dorsoduro and the Jewish Ghetto. A guide will share insight into the city’s history, architecture and local legends. For a grand finale, head out into the wider waters of the Grand Canal and float beneath the iconic Rialto Bridge. Numbers are limited to nine people on this small-group tour for a more intimate experience.


  • 2-hour small-group Venice canal cruise by motorboat including the Grand Canal
  • Explore the waterways of charming Venetian neighborhoods such as Cannaregio, the Jewish Ghetto and Dorsoduro
  • Discover canals away from the tourist trail, as well as attractions such as the Arsenale and Rialto Bridge
  • See craftsmen in work at a Dorsoduro gondola workshop and stop for photos at the Jewish Ghetto
  • Hear stories, anecdotes and snippets of Venetian history from an onboard guide
  • Small-group cruise with a maximum of 9 people ensures a personalized experience

Recent Photos of This Tour

What You Can Expect

Venice Canal Cruise: Grand Canal and Secret Canals by Motorboat

Enjoy your tour around Venice by boat!

See the quieter side of Venice with this small-group canal cruise. Make your way to the departure point near St Mark’s Square to meet your guide and board a comfortable motorboat. Enjoy the quiet charm of Venetian backstreets and observe canal-side scenes of daily life.

Pass through the gates of Porta dell’Acqua to enter Venice’s 12th-century shipyard known as the Arsenale. Learn how this historic naval depot was once among the greatest in Europe during Venice’s reign as a maritime superpower. 

Next, glide through the narrow, picturesque canals of the Cannaregio neighborhood and make your way to Venice’s Jewish Ghetto. Disembark here for 15-20 minutes to explore the historic quarters by foot and capture photos of the centuries-old buildings that surround the main square.

Continue on by boat to the neighborhoods of Santa Croce and Dorsoduro, and pass a traditional gondola workshop where craftspeople carefully carve and finish these classic Venetian vessels by hand.

Finally, make your way out into the wider waters of the Grand Canal for a cruise past the opulent squares and churches that line its banks. Float beneath the famous Rialto Bridge before returning to the original departure point near St Mark’s Square.

Customer Reviews

Gill R

5 star rating: Highly Recommended July 2016

Do this tour on your first day in Venice to orientate yourself to the city, learn about the history and taste the best gelato ever! Christina took us away from the beaten track with just a small group of 6 people to show us how Venetians used to live and how they live now.

Gretchen S

5 star rating: Highly Recommended July 2016

This tour was amazing!

Barbara B

5 star rating: Highly Recommended June 2016

This tour was all it promised to be. Excellent.

Vickie T Australia

5 star rating: Highly Recommended June 2016

thoroughly enjoyed this tour


5 star rating: Highly Recommended June 2016

Loved this tour and our guide. She was great!! Learned lots of history and saw the lesser seen sites of the city. Highly recommended.

Coolmitch United Kingdom

5 star rating: Highly Recommended June 2016

Loved this tour. I must admit the thought of spending 2 hours on a motorboat going up and down the canals in the heat did not sound good. What a surprise , me and my wife found it very interesting. We visited the boat yard first and I enjoyed the history being said by our guide. We then visited the Jewish Getto and were able to get off and walk through the streets. Very interesting the different style of houses and shops. We walked through to pick up the boat again and travelled down the grand canal. We got a good view of the Rialto Bridge from the end of the canal as from the normal side it has hordings up with advertisments. we were told they were doing up the bridge and we would not be able to get to the spot we got engaged at some 2 years before by foot. We next got off on the less busy side of the grand canal and were lead by our guide to a Gondola boat building business which was very interesting to see. We got back on the boat for the last few minutes of the tour which we fully enjoyed and would not hesitate to recommend. Thanks Viator I know you can get things right sometimes.

Donna M

5 star rating: Highly Recommended June 2016

If you do one boat tour on Venice, make it this one! It is a MUST do on your trip - especially at the beginning of your trip. Christina the tour guide was truly exceptional and made the tour extra special. She was informative, knowledgeable, courteous, funny and very genuine. The group is small so that everyone has a place to stand up and take pictures on the boat. Christina also took the time after the tour to point out a few local spots to visit and answer any questions we had about our visit to Venice. The tour itself takes you through variety of hidden canals that you wouldn't otherwise see along with the Grand Canal. You also make a stop at the Jewish Ghetto for a short walking tour. Christina gives an entertaining history of Venice and has you hanging on her every word while showing you various points of interest and little known facts along the way. The tour was so wonderful, we would do it again on our next visit! Grazie mille to Christina for creating such a memorable experience!


5 star rating: Highly Recommended June 2016

Wonderful tour. Too bad it rained the entire time we were on the boat!

Susan B

5 star rating: Highly Recommended June 2016

A great tour and the guide was so informative , a great start to our holiday

John R

5 star rating: Highly Recommended June 2016

An experience of a lifetime. Bring your video camera as pictures don't do it justice. Tour guides are the best and the Motorboat only takes a group of 8 everyone gets to stand out side of the boat for picture taking with a clear audio given by the guide. You spent the money to go there so don't miss this lifetime experience.

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