Italy’s Floating City of Venice is synonymous with gondola rides. This unique mode of transportation is the best way to experience Venice and its many canals. This is all you need to know about taking a Venice gondola ride.
Hey, we sell tours too!
While the information provided in this post is free, we also sell tours at reasonable prices. Most visitors to the Floating City of Venice usually stay for a day or two. Venice offers so many things to do and places to explore. To get the most out of your visit to Venice, you must make the most of your time. Our guided Venice tours take you through the city, teaching you about its storied history and optimizing your stay in Venice. From our Venice in a day tour which features the Doge’s Palace and Rialto Bridge, to a Venice food tour complete with a gondola ride, make your stay in Venice an unforgettable one with us.
The History of the Venice Gondola
The symbol of Venetian romanticism, the gondola is one of the Floating City’s historical means of transportation. Similarly shaped to a canoe, a standing gondolier or oarsman propels this flat-bottomed rowing boat through Venice’s many canals. After numerous changes in construction from the 15th century, the gondola’s modern-day design was established during the mid-20th century when the government of Venice prohibited further changes to the existing design.
Gondolas once thrived in the canals of Venice, with an estimated 10,000 of them rowing through the city. Now roughly 400 remain, governed by a guild issuing the same amount of licenses per year for gondoliers. A gondolier not only commands a gondola through the Floating City, but also preserves Venice’s rich history through storytelling.
Why You Should Take a Venice Gondola Ride
A gondola ride through Venice is one of the best ways to make the most of your time in Venice. You’ll venture through the city’s many canals and get a picturesque view of the many Venetian Gothic houses on the water. A relaxing alternative to the water taxi, you’ll enjoy hearing about Venice’s many stories from a knowledgeable gondolier. We offer a once-in-a-lifetime chance to experience an authentic Venice gondola ride for yourself on our Venice in a day tour, Venice highlights tour and Venice food tour.
How Much Does it Cost to Take a Venice Gondola Ride?
Many travelers to Venice want to know how much a Venice gondola ride would cost them. As we want your time in Venice to be a fruitful one, here is some information regarding what to expect when taking a Venice gondola ride.
The duration of a gondola ride is usually 35 minutes. The daytime rate for this experience is €80 flat for any sized group. Gondolas seat a maximum of 6 people, making them perfect for families or couples on a romantic getaway. For solo travelers, the best way to experience a Venice gondola ride is by embarking on our Venice highlights tour which includes a complete gondola ride, or by sharing the gondola with other solo travelers.
For those looking to make the gondola ride as cost-efficient as possible, splitting the bill at the gondola docks is a common occurrence. Visitors should be sure to settle on the price with the gondolier before embarking on their gondola ride to avoid any unexpected price increases. For those looking for a unique and picturesque way to see Venice, we highly recommend taking a gondola ride at night. The premium you’ll pay (roughly €100) is worth it for the magical ambiance alone. This pricing begins at 7 P.M. All rates for gondola rides are approved and regulated by the State of Venice, and must be observed by gondoliers in any instance.
Venice Gondola route maps and main itineraries
Now that you know the basics of Venice gondola rides, it’s time to experience it for yourself. Here are the most popular and scenic Venice gondola routes:
Hotel Danieli Venice Gondola Route (35min)
Perfect for first-time visitors to Venice, this route covers the Floating City’s most fascinating locations. This gondola dock is located in front of the Hotel Danieli next to the San Zaccaria ferry boat stop. You’ll pass through the city’s most ancient canals, under the Bridge of Sighs and through the central districts of Rio di San Severo and Rio di Santa Maria Formosa.
Traghetto Dogana Venice Gondola Route (35min)
This popular Venice gondola dock is located on the Grand Canal just a few steps from St. Mark’s Square in front of Harry’s Bar Cipriani. The Traghetto Dogana route will take you through the Grand Canal, passing famed Venice landmarks such as Palazzo Cà Dario and Chiesa della Salute. You’ll cruise through some of Venice’s narrower canals to see the Mozart House and Teatro della Fenice.
Bacino Orseolo Romantic Venice Gondola Route (35min)
For those looking for a more romantic experience, the Bacino Orseolo route is the perfect one to follow. You’ll start close to St. Mark’s Square at Bacino Orseolo, then proceed through the scenic Rio dell’Ovo and Rio dei Barcaioli. Your gondola ride will take you to the Grand Canal, where you’ll see a breathtaking view of the Rialto Bridge.
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- Check out our YouTube video and step-by-step guide about how to do Venice in a Day. If you’d rather let us guide you, check out our Venice tours.