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Venetia (VCE)

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A gondola cruise around Venice may not be as romantic as you expect. But it can be really fun.

Let the gondola ride through the canals and whisper sweet foolishness to your better half while the gondolier sings love serenades. Is there more romance?

However, a commercial gondola ride will cost you considerable money. Each gondolier has a price list board at its location, and if you are observant, you will soon find that prices are quite different. While in one place you give about 80 € for a half-hour cruise in two, elsewhere the same costs 140 €. And you can enjoy a double trip for 140 €. Damn it.

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Travel by water in Venice anyway you want to experience. But go to it cleverly and instead of a half-hour tour of the tourist center, book a gondola driving lesson. Lessons usually last 90 minutes, take you to more remote, calmer canals, and above all you will get the same and often cheaper than hikes for tourists.

You will learn on traditional handmade boats called batelliny. They are very similar to gondolas but are more spacious and stable. So, even as a novice gondolier, you shouldn’t fall down while maneuvering them. Here are a few places to arrange a test voyage.

Row Venice

Row Venice offers two kinds of lessons - during the day and after sunset. Evening lessons are more expensive, because they are also connected with the view of the illuminated center of Venice, and take you to places only known by the gondoliers.

Venetian Rowing Lesson

Venetian Rowing Lesson is an ideal opportunity to tap into traditional gondolierry. You will first try basic techniques of controlling the marshland securely at the shore. Only then you set out on the calm waters of the canals.

 ***Where: ** Port of Sacca Misericordia (45.445211, 12.334364) or as directed after booking.  * When: Test runs take place daily at 10.00, 11.30, 13.00, 14.30 and 16.00. In summer, also in the morning from 8.30.  * **For how much: ** You will pay 85 € for 1-2 people on the boat, 120 € for 3 passengers and 140 € for 4 participants. The lesson lasts 90 minutes.

Evening lessons Vogata di Sera

The Vogata di Sera evening lessons on the Grand Canal start after sunset and take place nowhere else than on Venice’s main thoroughfare. The cruise on it and the adjacent smaller and quieter channels will let you know what you will not see as a tourist during the day.

 ***Where: ** Port of Sacca Misericordia (45.445211, 12.334364) or as directed after booking.  * When: Always from 20.00 in May-October and from 17.30 in November-March.  * **How much: ** There is a single price of 180 € for the whole boat (1-4 participants). The lesson lasts 90 minutes.

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At the beginning of the Venetian Rowing Lesson lesson, you will practice the calm canals of the Cannaregio district, and as soon as you are sure you can head out to the open lagoon waters.

  • Where: Anchorage at Fondamenta Gasparo Contarini Street or as directed after booking.
  • When: Every day at 10.00, 11.30, 14.30 and 16.00.
  • How much: The prices are in dollars and always apply to 1 person, so you will pay $ 126 for 2 people, $ 180 for 3 people and $ 208 for 4 people. The price per person decreases with the higher number of participants, but it is also higher than for competitive rides. The lesson lasts 90 minutes.
  • Reservations: .

You can also try a 2-hour lesson from (180 € per ship for at least two participants). Here you will take a boat called sampierotta. They are also handcrafted, spacious and easy to handle like sheaves, but visually they are away from the classic gondolas that carry tourists.

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