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Venice is a charming destination filled with exquisite attractions and thrilling sights. However, if you are short on time, you must see these top 6 places in San Marco, Venice. This Venice itinerary will help you explore the best Venice attractions in very little time. Despite the tour structure being a bit intense, you'll be happy to have done it.

A few things we recommend:

You'll walk a lot and occasionally use the Venetian water buses known as vaporetto. To save up on public transport, get one of the deals offered by Venice City Passes

As a bonus, some Venice City Passes offer discounts on tickets to Venice museums and churches. Alternatively, you can buy skip-the-line tickets for the places listed below. 

For smooth navigation around Venicein Italy, use our detailed Venice map. It is interactive and contains valuable information about the desired locations. It is a helpful tool that will make your Venice experience unforgettable! 

Departure from Piazzale Roma

Piazzale Roma is the hub of Venice, where most tourists start their Venice journey. Thankfully, you can reach all the best Venice attractions from there. Once you get to Piazzale Roma, go to the Ferrovia B pier and take vaporetto #1 or #2. Remember to bring your ticket and validate it. After a 15-minute journey, get off at the Rialto stop. 

The Rialto Bridge

About a hundred metres from the stop, you'll find the iconic Rialto Bridge. This famous location is the first on our list of the top 6 places in Venice. It is the oldest bridge on the Grand Canal, usually with crowds of tourists trying to find the best angle for a picture. After admiring the Rialto Bridge, let's head to our next stop. 

Scala Contarini del Bovolo

On your way to Scala Contarini del Bovolo, watch the beauty of Venice unfold in San Marco. The narrow streets feature many shops, and you may even find a few gifts to take home (if you're a fast shopper!). 

Known for the incredible spiral staircase, Scala Contarini del Bovolo is one of the best Venice landmarks. It is a quick but worthy stop. Visitors come here for stunning architecture, a unique rooftop view of Venice, and a gallery inside. 

St Mark's Square

After exploring Scala Contarini del Bovolo, let's continue to St Mark's Square, the heart of Venice's cultural wealth. Piazza di San Marco is the centre of Venice and one of the most visited destinations in the world. It is home to the prominent St Mark's Basilica and important Venice museums

St Mark's Campanile

St Mark's Bell Tower is integral to touring St Mark's Square. It is a 15th-century, 98-meter-high bell tower that offers splendid panoramic city views. To avoid long queues, buy a ticket in advance, usually included in the Skip-the-Line tickets to St Mark's Basilica

St Mark's Basilica

After enjoying fantastic views of Venice and the Venetian Lagoon, let's quickly dive into St Mark's Basilica. It is most popular among Venice churches and is a distinctive city symbol. You'll need hours to see all that the Basilica has to offer. Yet, you can see the mosaics, Pala d'Oro, and the Treasury in a short time. This Venice cathedral is rightfully one of the top 6 places in Venice. 

Take a break at one of the Venice cafés

After visiting the Venice Cathedral, take a break and enjoy a coffee in one of the cafés on St Mark's Square. Soak in the atmosphere in one of these iconic places - Caffè Florian or Quadri. These are the best-known Venice cafés. If you want to avoid the crowds but still visit an authentic Venetian coffee shop, go to Rosa Salva. It has several locations in Venice, but one is 3 minutes from Piazza di San Marco. 

If you'd like to have lunch, use our Venice map to find a Venetian bacaro. It is where you can indulge in Venetian finger foods called Cicchetti Veneziani. It is perfect for a light but delicious meal with a glass of wine or a Spritz.  

After your gastronomic experience, walk towards the end of the square and onto Riva degli Schiavoni. This street boasts some magnificent scenery of the Venetian Lagoon, perfect for memorable photos. 

The Doge's Palace

The Doge's Palace is the fifth stop on our Venice itinerary. Known as the government seat of the former Venetian Republic, it is a must-see Venice attraction. The Doge's Palace is a masterpiece of Venetian art. It allows you to glimpse the history of Venice and offers incredible architecture and art inside. 

You can buy tickets on the museum's website. You can also get a combined ticket to enter the Marciana National Library and the Correr Museum. Both stand in Piazza di San Marco. However, these museums have fantastic exhibitions requiring more time to explore. 

The Bridge of Sighs

Last but not least on our list of top 6 places in Venice is the Bridge of Sighs. This bridge is yet another icon of Venice, known worldwide. At the end of the 16th century, the bridge connected the Doge's Palace and the nearby prisons. Getting a view of the city was the last thing the inmates saw on their way to prison. Today it is one of the world's legendary bridges, considered by many as a symbol of love.

Take a gondola ride

What a busy day! So if you still have some time left, take a gondola ride across the Venice canals. When approaching a gondolier, prepare for a bit of haggling, but remember that they will come down in price. 

End this beautiful tour by returning to Piazzale Roma. From San Marco Zaccaria, take the vaporetto #2 or #5.2 to Piazzale Roma/Santa Lucia Station.