The San Marco district in Venice, Italy is a vibrant and historic area that is home to many of the city's most popular attractions.
In this article, we are going to explore 10 things you should do while visiting the San Marco district of Venice.
Where is San Marco district located
Venice is a city that is made up of a series of small islands connected by canals and bridges, and the San Marco district is located on the main island of Venice, Italy.
The district is located in the central part of the city and is home to many of the city's most iconic landmarks and attractions, including St. Mark's Basilica and the Doge's Palace.
The San Marco district is a popular destination for tourists and is known for its history, culture, and art.
10 things to do in San Marco district in Venice
The San Marco district is the most touristy and famous district of Venice, Italy.
The most famous attractions of the city are in fact located here.
Would you go on a tour with us and explore the unmissable things to visit in San Marco district?
10. Visit the most famous Basilica of the city
The basilica is known for its gold mosaics, marble columns, and ornate details, and is a must-see for anyone visiting Venice.
If you want to enjoy it on your own or join little groups, you could decide to visit it by night. It's one of the most incredible experiences you will ever live!
9. Stroll around the so called "living room of Venice"
It's the most famous square of Venice and it is often referred to as "the living room of the city". Piazza San Marco, in fact, is so elegant that it is so easy to imagine the reason behind the nickname.
Here you will find some of the greatest symbols of the city. The famous Doge's Palace, Saint Mark's bell tower, the beautiful clock tower and of course the Procuratie, the three adjoining but also connecting buildings that surround the square on three sides. Inside of these buildings you will have the opportunity to visit the incredible Correr museum, one of our favorite museums of the city.
If you decide to walk beneath the elegant porches, you will see some elegant cafes. The most famous one is undoubtedly the Caffé Florian, the oldest cafè in Europe.
8. Explore the symbol of the government of the Serenissima
The Doge's Palace was once the home of the Venetian government and is now a museum.
It was built in the 14th century and was the residence of the Doge, or the ruler of Venice.
Visitors can take a tour of the palace and see its beautiful rooms and courtyards, as well as learn about its history and the role it played in the government of Venice.
If you visit the palace, you can also step into the Bridge of Sighs, the covered bridge that connects the palace to the city's prisons.
7. Visit one of the most important museums of Venice
Museo Correr, in Piazza San Marco, is home to a large collection of art, including paintings, sculptures, and decorative arts, as well as historical documents and artifacts. The museum also has a section dedicated to the history of Venice, with exhibits on the city's art, culture, and politics.
In addition to its permanent collection, the Museo Correr also hosts temporary exhibitions on a variety of subjects, such as art, history, and culture.
6. Shop in the Mercerie
If you like shopping, you cannot miss the Mercerie.
It is a shopping street in the San Marco district that is lined with boutiques, jewelry stores, and souvenir shops. It is a great place to pick up a souvenir or gift while in Venice.
Of course you can also do some luxury shopping.
5. Among the attractions of the San Marco district don't miss this amazing staircase
The Scala Contarini del Bovolo is a medieval staircase that was built in the 15th century. It is a circular staircase that is adorned with intricate details and is covered by a Gothic-style dome. The staircase is located in a small courtyard and is accessible from the street level.
This attraction is a great place to visit for anyone interested in architecture or history. It is a popular spot for tourists, and offers beautiful views of the surrounding area. The staircase is not very well known, so it is often less crowded than other tourist attractions in the city.
4. Do not miss the chance to take a gondola ride
A gondola ride is a quintessential Venice experience and is a must-do while visiting the city.
You can take a gondola ride through the canals of the San Marco district and see the city from a unique perspective. If you are in San Marco district, you can also pass beneath the Ponte dei Sospiri.
3. Visit the "Paròn de Casa"
Local people call the Campanile di San Marco the "Paròn de Casa". It means "landlord" in English.
It is a tall brick bell tower that offers panoramic views of Venice. You can take an elevator to the top of the tower and see all the way to the surrounding islands and lagoon.
Standing 98.6 meters high, it is one of the tallest bell towers in Italy. It stands, isolated, in a corner of St. Mark's Square, just in front of the basilica of the same name.
Very simple in shape, it consists of a square brick barrel, having a side of 12 meters and about 50 meters high, above which is the belfry, with arches.
2. Admire the most iconic bridge of Venice
Among the most famous bridges of the city, there is surely the Bridge of Sighs.
The Baroque-style Bridge of Sighs is built of Istrian stone. It was built in the early 17th century to a design by architect Antonio Contino, the grandson of Antonio Da Ponte, the builder of the Rialto Bridge.
This characteristic Venetian bridge, located a short walk from St. Mark's Square, spans the rio di Palazzo, connecting the Doge's Palace to the Prigioni Nuove with a double passage. It served in fact as a passageway for inmates from the said prisons to the offices of the State Inquisitors to be tried.
Known globally, it is photographed by tourists from all over the world. It was given this name because tradition has it that, in the days of the Serenissima, prisoners, crossing it, sighed at the prospect of seeing the outside world for the last time.
You can visit it from the inside if you take a guided tour of the Doge's palace.
1. Eat at a local trattoria
If you visit the inner core of the city, we cannot help but tell you to eat at some local restaurants.
The San Marco district, in fact, is home to many excellent restaurants that serve traditional Venetian cuisine. Be sure to try some local dishes such as cicchetti (small bites) and seafood while you're in the area.
However, we surely have to tell you that San Marco is one of the most touristy places in the city. That's why eating close to St Mark's square will be more expensive. If you dip into the less busy streets around the square, you may find the perfect venue for you.
You might even consider heading toward the Sestiere di Castello: the local cuisine here is also excellent, but the prices are much lower.
We hope we gave you some new ideas on the things to do in the San Marco district!
This district of Venice is surely one of the most visited places of the city.
You will find many tourists all year round (especially if you come here during high season).
However, you cannot miss the chance to come here, because it's indeed the place where you will find most of the symbols of the city!