I cannot believe I am asking this.....

Started Sep 16, 2012 | Discussions thread
57even Forum Pro • Posts: 12,769
Major tip for Venice

Get a decent, detailed street map. The Michelin one is good, so is the Rough Guide.

After around 9am, the tourist areas get very crowded - get down there early for photos. Worst areas are on the "tourist trail" from the Docks where the cruise ships pull up through Santa Croce and San Polo across the Rialto to San Marco. The Rialto is a funnel point so the last part is a log jam full of shops selling cheap imported tourist tattle and you can hardly move!

However, there are lots of quiet backwaters. Dorsoduro is quiet and actually stays open late - around Campta Santa Margherita you can find bars and pizza available well after midnight when the rest of the island closes down. Cannaregio is normally pretty deserted, but it's quite "authentic" as well, and the same applies to parts of Castello where the naval dockyards are, as well a many local boatbuilders.

However without a map it's easy to get quite lost, at least until you get familiar with some of the routes. But if you get stuck in a crowd just escape down a tiny side street and you can often get away from it all and find a nice coffee shop selling pastries

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