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The most romantic means of transport for visiting the lagoon is without doubt the iconic gondola.
The most popular route for enjoying the best of Venice is along the Grand Canal, overlooked by some of the finest historic palaces and interwoven with the spectacular Accademia, Calatrava, Rialto and Scalzi bridges – the only four crossing the Canal. Perspectives of the city here change totally and it allows access to places that are otherwise impossible to see.
If a gondola tour in solitary state is a little too expensive (about €80 during the day, €100 after 7.00 p.m.), you can get a taste of gondola travel thanks to a town council service offering local people and tourists a Gondola Ferry Service across the Grand Canal from one shore to the other.
It rather resembles a car sharing service – every gondola can carry up to 14 people – but costs just 50 cents (for the inhabitants - €2 for the tourists). A gondola trip in miniature!!!
Various crossings are offered, such as:
Fontego dei Turchi – San Marcuola
Riva del Vin – Riva del Carbon:
San Tomà – Ca' Garzoni
Ca' Rezzonico – San Samuele
Salute – Santa Maria del Giglio
Punta della Dogana – San Marco Vallaresso
Yet the finest is surely between Santa Sofia and Pescheria, better still if before 2.00 p.m. to enjoy a tour of the fruit, vegetable and fresh fish market set up every day at the feet of the Rialto Bridge and then stop at one of the many stalls to savour freshly-cooked fish.
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