From romantic boat journeys to lazy days on the beach, there are endless things to do in the Venetian Riviera. Whether you're travelling as a couple or with the kids, you'll find plenty of culture, leisure, and entertainment to keep everyone happy during your holiday. Here are some of the best things to do in the Venetian Riviera.
1. Spend the day in Venice
Let's be honest, the main attraction of this region is undoubtedly the floating city itself! If you want to surround yourself with traditional Italy, a visit to the Venetian Riviera isn't complete without a trip to Venice, one of the most breath-taking and unique places on earth. So pack your day full of sight-seeing as you enjoy the city views from the Campanile di San Marco, and much more.
2. See Venice's world-class sights
Wander through the alleys and canals, then see the stunning Piazza San Marco with its iconic basilica. Head to the Rialto Bridge where you can enjoy one of the best views of the Grand Canal, then visit the Gallerie dell'Accademia to see some of Venice's finest artworks from the 13th to the 18th centuries.
Another sight that's definitely worth putting on your list of things to do in the Venetian Riviera is the Palazzo Grassi, a 17th century palace exhibiting the art collection of French art collector François Pinault. View the magnificent ceiling of the Palazzo Ducale, or go on a gondola ride which will enable you to get to parts of Venice that are inaccessible by foot.
Bear in mind that gondolas can be rather expensive, especially for families, and you can still see much of Venice on foot. In summer, it can also get quite busy, so arrive early to make the most of the city before the crowds arrive.
3. Relax on Lido di Jesolo Beach
One of the most popular attractions on the Venetian Riviera is the beach in Lido di Jesolo. This Blue Flag winner has 17km of golden sands with plenty of sun loungers and parasols, lapped by the inviting waters of the Adriatic Sea. From around June to September, the sea here is often warm enough for a dip or a swim, and it's usually quite calm, so it's one of the perfect Venetian Riviera things to do for families with children.
It's really the only spot if you want a day by the beach, as swimming in the canals is a definite no-no! On the main street next to the beach you can find a good range of restaurants, bars, cafés, ice-cream parlours for your gelato, and in June or July there is a special sand-sculpture festival.
4. Take the kids to Aqualandia Caribe Bay
The little kids (and big kids!) will love a day out at Aqualandia Caribe Bay, It's Italy's biggest water park, themed on shipwrecks and pirates. There's a whole host of thrill seeking rides for the whole family to enjoy, including tube and toboggan slides. Other than the beach, it's the perfect place for you to cool off at the height of summer, when temperatures in the Venetian Riviera often hit the early or mid-30s °C.
5. Shop 'til you drop
Shopping on the Venetian Riviera ranges from high-end luxury boutiques to bustling weekly markets. You'll find a good mix of designer brands and handmade crafts in Venice, but if you head for the island of Murano, you can find some luxurious locally-made glass souvenirs to take home with you.
6. Take a boat to the glass-making centre of Murano
Murano is famous for its glassware, which ranges from high-end glass chandeliers to fountains and jewellery. Glass has been produced here since the early Middle Ages, if not Roman times, and you can see some of the most notable creations at the Murano Glass Museum in the beautiful Palazzo Giustinian. The glassware from this island makes an ideal souvenir gift for a family member or friend.
To get to Murano, just hop on a bus from Lido de Jesolo's bus station to Punta Sabbioni via Cavallino, about 45 minutes away, then go on a boat from here to Murano, which takes about an hour.
7. Go to Burano
Explore the charismatic island of Burano, noted for its colourful fishing houses and lace shoes industry. You can reach Burano by taking the same bus route to Punta Sabbioni and a 30-minute boat journey. Spending time in Murano or Burano are among the best Venetian Riviera things to do when you want to take a break from the beach for a while.
As you can see, there are endless things to do in the Venetian Riviera at any time of the year. Whether you take in the sights on land or on water, you'll never forget the magic of Venice.