Things to Do in Veneto - page 2
The Villa dei Vescovi was built in the 16th century, perched on a hill about 11 miles from Padua, as a summer retreat for the bishops of Padua. Today, the stately villa and the grounds are open to the public.
The rooms feature beautiful frescoes and high ceilings with wooden beams, both of which extend out onto the porticos that overlook the gardens, and there is historical furniture throughout. The grounds surrounding the villa include a vineyard and an orchard of fruit trees.
The second story of the villa contain the rooms in which the bishops lived, from the time it was built through the 20th century. The property was renovated and restored from 2007 through 2011. Today, two of the apartments on the second floor are available to rent, with two bedrooms each, plus private kitchens and bathrooms.
In a quiet corner of Venice ,the Venetian palace (palazzo) believed to be explorer Marco Polo’s former residence is easy to miss. Stop by Corte Seconda del Milion, a square named for Marco Polo's travel memoirs, Il Milione, to honor Italy's most famous adventurer while visiting the Floating City.
Spanning the Adige River on the northern edge of the city, Ponte Pietra reflects Verona’s remarkable history. This stone-and-brick footbridge was built by Romans in 100 BC and remained largely intact until several of its arches were blown up during World War II. Today, the reconstructed bridge is one of Verona’s top attractions.
Commemorating the influential Della Scala family, the Scaliger tombs are a series of five Gothic funerary monuments found outside the Santa Maria Antica church in Verona. Dating back to the 14th century, the monuments are famous for their elaborate decoration.
Castel San Pietro is a hilltop fortress in Verona. Built in the Austrian style in the 19th century and surrounded by cypress trees, it offers panoramic views of the city, including the Roman theater and the Adige river.
To get a glimpse into authentic Venice, a visit to the city’s historic outdoor Rialto Fish Market (Mercato di Rialto) is a must. Venetians have been purchasing their fish and seafood, fresh fruit and vegetables, and other foods at the Rialto Market since 1097, making it one of the most long-lived aspects of daily life in the Floating City.
Burial place of 25 Venetian doges and one of the largest churches in Italy, the Italian Gothic–style Basilica dei Santi Giovanni e Paolo is among the most important churches in the city. Known as San Zanipolo to locals, it is home to works by Bellini, Veronese, and two generations of Lombardo sculptors.
With its ornate facade and towering dome, the Basilica di Santa Maria della Salute is one of the most beautiful sights along Venice’s Grand Canal. Known simply as La Salute, the church dominates the mouth of the canal and its steps seem to rise directly from the water, inviting visitors to explore its soaring interior.
An easy detour from Vicenza and just minutes from Villa Capra, Villa Valmarana ai Nani is a striking example of a Venetian villa, perched on the slopes of San Bastian hill, looking out over the Valletta del Silenzio (Valley of Silence). Still inhabited by its aristocratic namesake, the Valmarana family, Villa Valmarana takes its suffix ‘ai Nani’ or ‘the Dwarves’ from the 17 stone sculptures that adorn its wall – a homage to the dwarf princess who once lived in the villa, if you believe the legend.
The villa is also open to the public and visitors can stroll the idyllic gardens and peek inside the Palazzina (the main residence), the Foresteria (the guest residence) and the Scuderia (the stables). The highlight of a visit is admiring the magnificent frescoes, painted in the 18th century by the Tiepolos and celebrated as some of their finest work.
Sitting high above St. Mark’s Square and visible from the Grand Canal, the remarkable clock in St. Mark’s Clock Tower (Torre dell'Orologio) has served as Venice’s official timepiece for more than 500 years. Touring this historic symbol of the city is a highlight of any visit, not least for the sweeping views from the top of the tower.
More Things to Do in Veneto
Of the many historic opera houses in Italy, few are more legendary than Venice’s Teatro La Fenice. Opened in 1792, the theater quickly became a major venue for opera and ballet. Today you can view the sumptuous 19th-century-style interiors during a musical or dance performance, or join a guided tour of the theater.
Old and new come together elegantly at Verona’s Castelvecchio, a historic castle renovated in the 1960s by visionary architect Carlo Scarpa, who paired glass panels, concrete, and metal grills with the surviving medieval stonework to create a striking museum for artworks by Bellini, Tiepolo, and Veronese.
Had Shakespeare’s tale of star-crossed lovers Romeo and Juliet ended happily ever after, the two may have wed in Verona’s beautiful 12th-century cathedral; and, in fact, travelers flock to the duomo on Romeo and Juliet-themed tours. The mix of Romanesque, Gothic, and Renaissance elements make this one of the most beautiful churches in Verona.
Just outside the resort town of Peschiera del Garda on the shores of Lake Garda, the 19th-century English-style Parco Giardino Sigurtà, or Sigurtà Park, is considered among the most beautiful gardens in Europe, with a Great Lawn, large hedgerow maze, Avenue of the Roses, and Water Gardens.
Those looking to escape the crowds in Venice for the day can head to the postcard-perfect landscape of Lake Misurina (Lago di Misurina), set in the stunning Dolomite mountains, a UNESCO World Heritage Site north of the Floating City. Unwind on the scenic chalet-lined shore, savor the crisp Alpine air, and enjoy spectacular views of the towering peaks beyond.
Tucked down a Venice side street near the Grand Canal, Palazzo Contarini del Bovolo is worth a detour for its Bovolo Staircase (Scala Contarini del Bovolo). Named for the Venetian word for snail, this spiral staircase—the most famous in Venice—is housed in a cylindrical tower with open arches that climbs the facade, offering beautiful views over the city.
Via Mazzini is Verona’s top shopping street. It’s lined with stores selling the latest fashions and chic cafes where you can sit and people watch over a creamy cappuccino. Leading from the central square Piazza Bra to the Casa di Giulietta (Juliet’s balcony) it connects some of the city’s main sights.
Tucked away from the crowded piazzas of Venice, Campo Santa Maria Formosa is a charming little square in the Castello district. With a handful of cafés, a co-op market, and local shops, Campo Santa Maria Formosa offers a nice reprieve from the tourist hustle of Venice and allows a glimpse into local life.
Cannaregio is the largest and most populated of Venice’s six central districts (sestieri). Home to the Jewish ghetto, the art-filled Chiesa della Madonna dell'Orto, the Renaissance Chiesa di Santa Maria dei Miracoli, and the restaurant-lined Fondamenta de la Misericordia, Cannaregio offers something for everyone.
Spanning the southern end of the Grand Canal between the Galleria dell’Accademia in Dorsoduro and Campo San Vidal in San Marco, the Accademia Bridge (Ponte dell'Accademia) is one of only four bridges crossing the canal. It’s the perfect vantage point to view the church of Santa Maria della Salute and the canal or observe the city’s Carnival festivities.
The highest mountain in the Dolomites of northeastern Italy, Marmolada has five peaks, all standing between 3,000–3,343 m (9,842.5–10,968 ft); of these Punta Penia is the highest. The northern slopes of the mountain are covered in the only sizeable glacier in the Dolomites, the Ghiacciaio della Marmolada.
Known as the ‘Queen of the Dolomites’ and famous for its summer hiking and winter ice climbing, Marmolada forms part of the Dolomiti Superski area, with 1,200 km (750 miles) of groomed pistes. The Bellunese is its longest run at 12-km (7.5-mile) and heads down to Malga Ciapela in the Pettorina valley; this resort is the starting point for the legendary Sellaronda ski tour through the valleys of Arabba, Fassa, Gardena and Badia. From Malga Ciapela a cable car goes up to the peak of
Marmolada’s Punta Rocca at 3,309 m (10,856 ft) for glorious views over the jagged, snow-capped summits of the Dolomites and – on a clear day – even to Venice.
Marmolada and the Dolomites formed the natural barrier that divided Italy from the last fragments of the Austro-Hungarian Empire, and was location of much military action during World War I, when Austrian soldiers dug far in to the cliffs of its
northern slopes and resisted Italian attack. The Museum of the Great War up at Serauta is the highest museum in Europe and showcases photos, uniforms, weapons and medals from the conflict; caves and tunnels dug out by the warring factions can
be explored close by.
One of the most popular and prestigious museums in Venice, the Peggy Guggenheim Collection of modern art provides a welcome contrast to Venice’s ornate Gothic and baroque art and architecture. A visit here is a must for any lover of 20th-century art.
Verona Arena, the first-century Roman amphitheater on Piazza Bra is one of the city’s most famous sights, but Verona also boasts a pristine Roman Theater that is even older than the arena and is set on the banks of the River Adige. Visit the theater to see remains of the stage, stone seating (cavea), and loggia arcades.
Verona’s largest church, the impressive brick facade of Basilica di Sant'Anastasia has been a fixture of the city for hundreds of years. Located in the historical center, it’s also one of the city’s finest examples of Italian Gothic architecture.
- Things to do in Venice
- Things to do in Vicenza
- Things to do in Padua
- Things to do in Treviso
- Things to do in Verona
- Things to do in Emilia-Romagna
- Things to do in Friuli-Venezia Giulia
- Things to do in Istria
- Things to do in Ferrara
- Things to do in Modena
- Things to do in Piran
- Things to do in Lombardy
- Things to do in Austrian Alps
- Things to do in Tuscany
- Things to do in Swiss Alps