Italy: Offbeat Things To Do & Eat in Venice



Peggy Guggenheim in Venice, in her trademark winged glasses (Credit: haven’t been to Venice yet, but will go in the next year or two. In the meantime, I’ve been doing a bit of research on what I’d like to do when I get there.


Walking tour with a difference

I’ve take a ghost walk in whichever new town I visit – one of the best was one where just myself, my husband and the student tour guide in her swingy cape strolled the streets of Prague on a freezing winter evening, being sprung upon by varied “ghosts” along the way, each one making me jump a foot in the air …

Unfortunately I haven’t been able to find a ghost tour that floats my boat in Venice, so instead I’ll go on a tour with L’Altra Venezia (the other Venice) which I would hope will show me off the beaten path Venice that many people don’t get to see. Their costs are up to 13 euros per person and they have quite a few different routes within Venice – they do “The Other” as well as “Classical” tours and I presume they can conduct them in English as they have English pages on their website. There are many very good reviews on TripAdvisor for them, although mostly in Italian and French.

Far from the madding crowd

I would take a walk around the Dorsoduro area for the artisanal shops and not-so-famous churches and boatyards. This unusual Dorsoduro self-guided walking tour looks just the thing.

Some modern art

I would visit the Peggy Guggenheim collection in the Palazzo Venier dei Leoni. American and European art of the first half of the twentieth century is housed in this building, formerly occupied by the lady herself. Paintings and sculpture from the likes of Picasso, Braque and Kandinski feature in a beautiful, serene old building and will make a pleasant change from the gothic and baroque art of Venice.


Palazzo Venier dei Leoni 701

Food and drink

I would try seafood restaurant Hostaria Da Franz but not just for their fish – they are said to do one of the finest tiramisu in the world, and this is my very favourite dessert. And pizza at Al Nono Risorto – a large pizza in a casual, lively setting is said to be had here. And the prosecco is apparentlly very good value and great tasting as well.

Taverna del Campiello Remer has a courtyard that overlooks the Grand Canal and provides geeat-sounding buffets, cocktails, and live music (not every night, though). And it’s somewhere you may actually find a local or two.


Hostaria da Franz: Castello,3499
Al Nono Risorto: Santa Croce 2337, Calle della Regina
Campiello Remer: Sestiere Cannaregio 5701

Where to stay?

The Ai Tagliapietra b&b gets great reviews. It’s good value, boasts warm and friendly decor, is quite centrally situated but in the back streets away from the hustle and bustle, and the lovely host Lorenzo meets you from your vaporetto and walks you to his b&b!


Castello 4943, 30122 Venice

Superstition? Bah!

I want to visit the the south-east corner of the Piazza, the Piazetta (little Piazza) because I want to walk between the two columns. They were pilfered from Constantinople in the 12th century and dedicated to the patron saints of Venice – one features The Lion of San Marco and the other San Teodoro and his crocodile (or could it be a dragon?) Walking between them is said to be incredibly bad luck as it was where public executions took place but I don’t mind, I’m a contrary thing.

Do you have any offbeat things you’d like to do in Venice, or have done in Venice? I’d love to hear what you think in the comments below.

Julie McNamee
Born in Belfast and now living in London, Julie McNamee is involved in internet marketing as a day job and blogging as a hobby. She's interested in all things quirky and Fortean, as well as art, photography and theatre. Her blog Quirky Travel, specializes in London and Paris top tips and off the beaten path information with subjects such as London film locations and unusual Paris museums.
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