Thinking of a Rail Holiday to Venice?
With its captivating waterways and charming atmosphere, Venice has been attracting visitors for 600 years. Built on a lagoon, Venice remains remarkably unchanged and authentic. For over 150 years visitors have been making the romantic rail journey here, and since 1919 Venice was the end point on the famous Venice Simplon-Orient-Express Rail Line. It seems fitting to continue this fine tradition and make the enchanting journey to Venice by train. After all, Venice is on water, and it wouldn’t make sense to arrive at the world’s only pedestrianised city by road.
When is the best time to visit Venice by rail?
Romantic and enchanting, Venice attracts visitors throughout the year. But the canals and bridges come alive in summer and at Christmas. During the balmy long summer nights the narrow streets and canals thrive. Beautiful warm days create a buzz in the atmosphere; couples walk hand in hand, water taxis gracefully sail down the canals, and the evenings are filled with terrace dining and fine wine. Summer is understandably the peak tourist season in Venice. Don’t let this put you off. Attractions are open later, and the long hours of daylight mean you’ve got ample time to relax as well as explore the city.
At winter time the nights draw in more quickly and Venice changes mood. It’s a quieter time for tourists giving you more space and freedom to explore. For the locals it is a busy time as they prepare for Christmas. Twinkling Christmas lights reflect off the canals, adding even more bewitchment to the Floating City. At night time the waterways are tranquil, and gondolas pass under illuminated bridges and elegant city lights.
What do to in Venice on your first class rail holiday
Venice isn’t a city for charging around and ticking off a list of attractions. It’s best explored slowly, on foot and by water. From the train station a private water taxi provides an immediate impression of the city’s magic, taking guests along the water to the 4* Hotel Ai Mori d’Oriente. Venice is famous for its pedestrianised streets, and blindly exploring without a map is a soothing experience.
Amongst it all are hidden treasures and public squares that scream of grandeur. Cross over the 800 year old Rialto Bridge and head to Rialto Market for a spot of shopping. Then visit the iconic San Marco Square, dominated by the Palazzo Ducale (Doge’s Palace) and the stunning Basilica di San Marco. Dress conservatively for this famous church, and check out other ancient wonders like the San Giacomo du Rialto church which dates from 421AD. Step back into the atmosphere of an 18th century noble houses at the Ca’Rezzonico, and explore the artists that made Venice famous in Italy’s best art museum, the Galleria Dell’Accademia di Venezia. Best of all, Planet Rail’s luxurious holiday itinerary allows three full days to see it all.