Cities acquire a fascinating appearance when the sun goes down. During the night, the lights illuminate every hidden corner, and this is also the case in Venice. Strolling through its calli at night you can admire all the charm of La Serenissima.
After a day touring museums and monuments, at night you can relax and enjoy the most beautiful hours. The city depopulates from the morning crowds, the lights on the Grand Canal turn on and the magic begins: the beauty of Venice at night is impossible to describe!
Today we will recommend places, and help you get there, where you can stroll peacefully, caressed by the evening breeze, admiring the beauty of Venice under the stars. Let's go!
St Mark's Square and Riva degli Schiavoni
St Mark's Square in the evening assumes a different, more magical aspect. As the sun goes down, and the temperatures drops, the square comes alive. Emptied of the many daily tourists, it is possible to stroll peacefully among the famous cafés to the notes of their live music. The majestic palaces surrounding the square light up at night, enveloping St Mark's Square in a beam of golden light.
Move towards the Doge's Palace and the Basin and then turn right onto Riva degli Schiavoni, a long, wide fondamenta that runs from the square to the Giardini della Biennale. It was once the landing place for boats and galleons but today it is an elegant promenade lined with numerous classy bars and restaurants. Here you will have a priceless view of the illuminated Lagoon: the Giudecca on the right, San Giorgio with its bell tower and the Lido in the distance.
Rialto and Campo dell’Erbaria
Another place to visit during the evening is the famous Rialto Bridge, when all the shops close and majestically it rises above a kaleidoscope of colours reflected on the Grand Canal.
When the market closes at Rialto, the bars and bacari become crowded with young people. An aperitif in Campo dell'Erbaria, with its magnificent view over the Grand Canal, is a must. Here at Rialto, the historic heart of the city, you can immerse yourself in the atmosphere of the authentic Venice, the one frequented by its inhabitants.
To get to Rialto from St Mark's Square go to Bacino Orseolo and then straight on to Campo San Luca; turn into Calle del Teatro and then straight on to Campo San Bartolomeo; turn into Salizada Pio X and after the Rialto Bridge turn right.
Fondamenta dei Ormesini and Fondamenta della Misericordia
For a more hidden Venice, head for the Cannaregio district, along Fondamenta dei Ormesini and Fondamenta della Misericordia. This is one of the most authentic areas of Venice. This area is one of the favourite evening and night haunts for young Venetians and others, especially for the presence of numerous bacari and live jazz music venues.
Reaching the Fondamenta from the train station is very easy. Exit the station and proceed straight ahead to the left. When you reach and cross Ponte delle Guglie turn left along Fondamenta Cannaregio and then turn immediately right along Calle Ghetto Vecchio. Proceeding straight on you will reach the centre of the Ghetto, past Campo di Ghetto Nuovo, and crossing the bridge you will find yourself on Fondamenta dei Ormesini.
Campo Santa Margherita
Another popular spot in Venice for young people, especially university students, is Campo Santa Margherita in the Dorsoduro district.
From St Mark's Square reach Calle Larga XXII Marzo and then straight on to Campo del Giglio, Campo San Maurizio and Campo Santo Stefano; cross the Accademia Bridge and take Campo de la Carità and then Calle del Pistor; proceed keeping to the right and reach Campo San Barnaba, cross the bridge and then straight on to Campo Santa Margherita.
The Campo is dotted with bars, cafés, pubs and small restaurants. The atmosphere is always cheerful and festive thanks to the Venetian youth who populate it.
Zattere and Punta della Dogana
Just a few steps from Campo Santa Margherita you can reach the Zattere for a quiet stroll and an ice cream. This fondamenta, about a kilometre long, runs along the Giudecca Canal and is packed with cafés and small restaurants with their outdoor terraces on the Canal.
Walk along the Zattere to the left to reach Punta della Dogana, located at the point where the Grand Canal loses its way and opens into the Bacino di San Marco and together they join into the Giudecca Canal. From this triangular point overlooking the lagoon in front of St Mark's you will have a spectacular view of the whole of St Mark's Basin illuminated by the thousand lights of the lagoon.