The gondolas plying the busy Grand Canal and smaller waterways of Venice are one of the most iconic images in the world. They are the symbol of history, tradition, and romance in the city on the lagoon, and a gondola ride in Venice ranks among one of the most dreamed-about experiences for travelers.
While gondolas were once regularly used by Venetians, especially of the upper classes, today vaporetti have become the main form of water transportation in Venice. A few hundred years ago there were about 10,000 gondolas plying the canals and lagoon but today, there are only about 500.
Most people recommend taking a gondola ride on the quiet back canals rather than on the crowded Grand Canal. Riding on canals outside the main tourist area lets you see a different view of Venice and there won’t be bumper to bumper gondolas. Good places to find gondolas away from the Grand Canal and St. Mark’s Square include the San Polo and Campo San Barnaba areas and the Jewish Ghetto. Choose a gondola stop in the area you want to visit. If you want back canals, walk a few blocks off the main street (and away from San Marco) to look for a gondolier.
Gondolas allow you to see Venice from a completely different perspective and better appreciate how the city functions with canals instead of streets. There is only one Venice, and only one place in the world where you can ride an authentic gondola through the canals of a city that is more than 1200 years old. Don’t miss your chance to experience the romantic ride of a gondola. Talk to your Beach Bum Vacation Travel Concierge now to start your trip to Venice.