Are you planning a trip to Venice, but are having troubles deciding where to stay in Venice? Here you will find information on the best places to stay in Venice, with information on the best area to stay in Venice for travelers.
Venice is a city that needs no introduction, and one of the most popular tourist destinations in Italy. There are plenty of good areas to stay in Venice, and the city is actually quite small that you can easily manage to explore it on foot (or by Vaporetto, Venice’ famous public transportation system) no matter where you decide to base yourself.
The most popular attractions are all around the area of Piazza San Marco, which inevitably is also the most expensive place to stay in Venice. But there are plenty of excellent places to stay in other sestieri (districts) of Venice other than in San Marco, and if you find the city may blow your budget I have some great suggestions for you not to break the bank.
Curious to find out more? Continue reading to discover the where to stay in Venice.
Where To Stay in Venice
San Marco – Where to stay in Venice for first timers
Taking its name from the patron saint of the city, San Marco is one of the busiest yet smallest areas of Venice. This is where tourist crowds gather and day trippers arrive to admire its main sights: Saint Mark’s Square, the Doge’s Palace, and the Bridge of Sighs. Being so touristed, you can expect streets lined with restaurants that provide multilingual menus and several different hotels.
During the peak tourist season, San Marco can become a bit overwhelming with crowds, but it’s still a convenient place to stay – particularly for shorter stays in Venice of just a few days or so. Plus, it is possible to get away from the crowds by exploring the narrow alleyways and back streets of San Marco, where you’ll find clothing stores, small bars, and boutique hotels.
Below are some of the best places to stay in Venice located in San Marco.
Luxury – Egò Boutique Hotel The Silk Road
This four-star hotel is located on the waterfront of the Grand Canal, partly overlooking the Ponte di Rialto (and just 100 meters from it). You’ll also be in easy reach of Ca’ d’Oro, which is a few minutes away on foot.
Location-wise, it’s an amazing place to be. Inside this boutique hotel you’ll find opulent interiors and rooms that showcase the rich history of the Venetian palace in which it is situated.
The hotel’s bar, which features intricate wooden floors, original wood beamed ceilings, and Murano glass chandeliers, overlooks the canal at the famous bridge. Luxury continues into the guest suites, which are elaborately styled with traditional furniture and antique artwork; some even come with spa bathtubs. It’s definitely one of the best Venice luxury hotels.
Mid-range – Al Theatro Palace
This hotel is all about location; it’s just steps from Venice’s world-famous Teatro La Fenice, which opened in 1792. It’s also only 400 meters from the hustle and bustle of Saint Mark’s Square.
Inside, the property has a selection of modern, minimalist rooms on offer, which feature whitewashed walls and views out over the city. The breakfast (included in the price) is very good, while the on-site bar makes evenings feel extra chic. The friendly team of staff here make sure everything runs smoothly and that you enjoy your stay.
Budget – Hotel Firenze
Right next to Saint Mark’s Square, Hotel Firenze is very good value for money and has been well loved by the many, many visitors who have passed through its doors – it’s one of the best places to stay in Venice for budget travelers.
Guest rooms here are colorful and come with tiled floors, floor to ceiling windows and large, comfortable beds. The rooftop terrace atop the 16th-century building is the place to enjoy a drink or two (and breakfast), not least because of the views.
Cannaregio – Where to stay in Venice to explore the entire city
The northernmost of the historic districts of Venice, Cannaregio is the city’s second largest and is named after the Cannaregio canal. This canal provided the main route into Venice until the railway was built. It’s here in this lively district that you’ll find Venice’s former Jewish Ghetto; from 1516, this area was closed by guarded gates and under strict curfew during dark hours. The gates were finally removed with the arrival of Napoleon in 1797.
Cannaregio feels like a more authentic slice of the city, with less of the tourist paraphernalia that goes with an area like San Marco. To this day, Cannregio remains Venice’s foremost Jewish neighborhood and is home to several synagogues. During the holiday season, it’s not decked out for Christmas, but for Hanukkah instead.
The area’s main landmark is the Ca’ d’Oro; completed in 1430, this beautiful white building – taking design cues from the Doge’s Palace – was once multicolored and covered in gold (hence the name).
Staying in Cannaregio is good for those who want to delve a little deeper into life in Venice, and with good connections in and out of the city, thanks to the train station being located here.
The following are excellent places to stay in Venice Cannaregio area.
Luxury – Venice Times Hotel
A contemporary hotel but with old world styling (think dark color palette and deep blues accented with gold), Venice Times Hotel is a chic, sultry place to stay.
Mornings at this stylish hotel start with a delicious breakfast included in the room rate, after which you can hop on the nearby vaporetto to explore Venice or spend some time sunning yourself in the garden before you leave. The on-site bar is the perfect place for a nightcap to wind up your day.
Mid-range – Pesaro Palace
This 15th-century palace, set right on the Grand Canal, is right next to Ca’ d’Oro vaporetto stop, making it a great base for getting around. That’s if you can tear yourself away from this beautiful property.
Rooms here have been decorated with a high-end finish and include classic furniture and Murano glass lamps. There’s a hearty buffet breakfast included in the price, while evenings mean heading to the onsite bar for a cozy drink or two.
Budget – Hotel Mezzo Pozzo
Hotel Mezzo Pozzo is an affordable place to stay with a great location, with sights like Ca’ d’Oro and vaporetto stops just moments away. You can also get to Saint Mark’s Square in less than 10 minutes’ walk.
Taking up space inside a typical historical Venetian building, all of the rooms at this hotel are spacious, immaculately clean, and perfectly styled. Expect parquet floors, patterned wallpaper, and accents of vintage furnishings throughout.
Dorsoduro – Where to stay in Venice for the best nightlife
Over in Venice’s southeastern quarter lies the district of Dorsoduro. Originally built up around the Giudecca Canal, which separates it from Giudecca Island, construction here began in earnest from the 6th century onwards. It was here in the 19th century that the city’s Accademia di Belle Arti di Venezia was set up, which remains today as part of the University of Venice.
As you may expect, Dorsoduro is home to many students and student-friendly establishments, making it a favorite among those who want to enjoy a lively part of the city. Think cool bars, creative hangouts, and trendy shops to browse. It’s also well connected thanks to a bridge right into San Marco.
Dorsoduro is also the location of the Santa Maria della Salute – opening in 1687, it’s one of the most important churches in Venice. There’s also Ca’ Rezzonico, an 18th-century Baroque palazzo housing a museum today.
Below are some some excellent places to stay in Dorsoduro.
Luxury – Excess Venice Boutique Hotel & Private Spa
As you can tell from the “Excess” in the name, this is one of the best Venice luxury hotels. It is all about its lavish interiors and impeccable service.
Staying here means unwinding in sophistication, with myriad spa treatments on offer, manicured gardens to stroll in, and rooms accented with gold and plush, comfortable furnishings. Despite its historic 15th-century credentials, this hotel comes with all the modern comforts and conveniences you could need.
Mid-range – Hotel Moresco
The beautifully designed Hotel Moresco is a masterclass in 19th-century Venetian interiors. From the wood-paneled ceilings of the shared guest lounge to the chandeliered restaurant and the classically decorated guest rooms themselves, it’s a luxurious experience from start to finish.
The location is an ideal balance of central yet still quiet, plus there’s a lovely garden to relax in at the end of a day spent exploring the city.
Budget – Pensione Accademia – Villa Maravege
This charming 17th-century villa sits on a waterside location in a quiet corner of the Dorsoduro neighborhood. Staying here means luxuriating in old world charm, where staff provide classic hospitality to make the stay even more enjoyable.
It’s not crazy budget-friendly, but this place does offer good value for money for the location; it’s easy to get to all of Venice’s main attractions from here, and rooms have views of the Grand Canal.
San Polo – Where to stay in Venice if you have a short time in the city
Centrally located, and very compact, San Polo is one of the oldest parts of the city – and many also believe the best area to stay in Venice. Nestled in and among the Rialto Islands, the district is flanked by the Grand Canal and connected to San Marco by its iconic Ponte di Rialto.
This shop-lined bridge is the oldest of the four bridges that cross the Grand Canal. San Polo is also home to Venice’s famed market – and has been since 1007.
Like neighboring San Marco, San Polo is a busy area, popular with tourists who come to cross the bridge and wander the district’s charming streets. Top sights and attractions here include the largest church in Venice, the 13th-century Basilica di Santa Maria Gloriosa dei Frari, which lies at the heart of San Polo, and the impossibly ornate Scuola Grande di San Rocco with its collection of paintings by Venetian artist, Tintoretto.
Also like San Marco, San Polo is the best area to stay in Venice if you’ve only got a few days in the city; you’ll be right in the middle of the action with sightseeing possibilities in easy reach (plus a lot of accommodation to choose from).
Below are some excellent places to stay in Venice San Polo sestiere.
Luxury – Al Ponte Antico
For some truly high-end (and very expensive) luxury, there’s the chance to stay in this gorgeous 14th-century palace. Al Ponte Antico offers a range of ornate rooms, which feature original wooden ceilings and overflowing with princely patterns throughout.
Aside from the extravagant exterior design, it’s the hotel’s location that steals the show. It set on the Grand Canal, almost next to the Ponte di Rialto; there’s a beautiful stone terrace where you can drink and dine overlooking the bridge (it’s illuminated after dark for extra romance). It’s easy to see why it’s considered one of the best Venice luxury hotels.
Mid-range – La Villeggiatura
While this hotel looks the part and is super comfortable, it’s the staff who go above and beyond that really make La Villeggiatura an amazing place to stay in Venice.
It’s a small-sized hotel with only six bedrooms to choose from, each carefully decorated with a charm of its own, making it an intimate place to stay. It’s just a kilometer from here to Saint Mark’s Square, with other sights in easy reach.
Budget – Ca’ San Polo
It may be budget-friendly, but this guesthouse is still set within the walls of a 15th-century property. This historic accommodation choice is an ideal place to stay in Venice, with a choice of rooms from double rooms to suites.
Decor is traditional yet regal and the whole is place is full of character. Amenities include a rooftop terrace, where guests can have breakfast overlooking the San Polo district. From here, Ponte di Rialto is just a 10-minute stroll away.
Castello – Where to stay in Venice for a more authentic feel
Inhabited since at least the 8th century, Castello is situated on island of San Pietro di Castello, formerly known as Isola d’Olivolo. It was here that a castle was built in the 6th century, from which the sestiere – Venice’s largest – today takes its name.
The sestiere grew around a naval dockyard from around the 13th century, the Arsenale, which was once the largest naval complex in all of Europe. From the Middle Ages to the Renaissance, Castello was known for its community of Greek merchants who left their mark on the district in the form of educational and religious institutions.
Castello is basically two sestieri in one. On the border with San Marco, and with the Doge’s Palace very nearby, it can be busy and features several different properties to stay in. However, much of Castello, particularly the area around the dockyard, is more down to earth and authentic; it’s a great place to stay in Venice if that’s the sort of experience you want.
Castello is home to the Basilica of Santi Giovanni e Paolo, one of the largest churches in the city. Completed in the 1430s, it was here that funeral ceremonies for the doges of Venice were held; today a total of 25 doges have their final resting places at the basilica. To learn more about the naval history of Venice, there’s the fascinating Naval Historical Museum, which opened in 1919.
Finally, let’s discover the best places to stay in Venice’ Castello.
Luxury – Ca’di Dio
This newly renovated hotel features contemporary rooms with up-to-date decor, but which feature historic touches that nod to its religious history. Even though it’s modern, Ca’di Dio can easily fool you: there’s a lot of history here. In fact, this is a 13th century building that’s had various uses throughout its 800-year history.
It’s not a classically lavish Venetian hotel, but it is effortlessly luxurious, with plenty of places for relaxation – including a reading room with comfortable chairs, an inner courtyard garden and terrace with beautiful views. On top of that, staying here will grant you access to exceptional service. In terms of location, you’ll find it overlooking the Grand Canal and in easy reach of many sights.
Mid-range – Hotel Paganelli
Hotel Paganelli is set in a former convent, with guest rooms that have been accented by the history of the building. There’s a variety of amenities to enjoy here, from the easygoing bar to the rooftop garden that affords views out over Venice. A hearty breakfast is also served up every morning in the comfortable dining area.
Budget – Venezia Vaniglia Guest House
Located inside a historic Venetian building, it may not have been decorated in a high-end fashion, but there’s vintage, shabby-chic charm to enjoy here. From the parquet floor to the floor-to-ceiling windows and traditionally decked out rooms, it’s simple yet very cool. Location-wise, it’s close to wooded parkland on Castello and close also to a vaporetto stop.
Giudecca – Where to stay in Venice to get away from the tourist crowds
Officially part of the Dorsoduro neighborhood, Giudecca is an island separated from the Dorsoduro “mainland” by the Giudecca Canal. Just half a square kilometer in size, Giudecca is a little bit like a Venice of the past.
Like in the rest of the city, there are no cars or motorbikes, and many tourists never reach this far. Because of that Giudecca remains a bastion of local life, with a scattering of tourists staying in its collection of boutique apartments.
Even though it’s across the water from the more popular Rialto Islands, it’s easy to get to and from Giudecca. All you have to do is take one of the affordable water buses across the canal.
One of the best parts of choosing to stay in Giudecca for your Venice trip is the view; from here, the bell tower of Saint Mark’s Basilica can be clearly seen, as can the buildings of San Marco itself.
But the area is full of its own interesting history to explore. Check out the Casa dei Tre Oci – a beautiful building in itself, but today home to many different events and exhibitions throughout the year. There’s also the imposing Church of the Redeemer Giudecca, built in 1577 to show thanks for the plague leaving the city.
Below are some excellent places to stay in Venice’ Giudecca district.
Luxury – Cipriani, A Belmond Hotel
For travelers looking for a five-star experience in Venice, look no further than Cipriani. From the moment you arrive, staff at this property provide exceptional service. Throughout the hotel boasts a chic ambience and plenty of opportunities to soak up views of the lagoon.
The food on offer here, among its varied eateries, is extensive and delicious. There’s a whole host of room choices to go for, and even an outdoor pool for guests to use.
Mid range – Casa Eden
Casa Eden offers up a choice of suites and apartments on Giudecca Island for those who want a home away from home during their Venice trip. Rooms here are quintessentially Venetian, and feature their own private balconies, while there’s also a well-equipped shared kitchen and an oasis-like back garden to make full use of.
Budget – Generator Venice
Part of the Generator chain of hostels, this is the perfect place to stay in Venice if you are traveling on a budget. Even though it’s a hostel, it’s set in a 19th-century building and comes packed with an array of amenities, including a restaurant and bar. You can also opt for female-only dormitories here, or a private room.
Santa Croce – Where to stay in Venice off the beaten track
North of San Polo lies the relatively laid-back sestiere of Santa Croce. With no borders to the eternally bustling San Marco district, Santa Croce remains slightly off the beaten track and is great for visitors who want to explore at a more leisurely pace.
Santa Croce the only sestiere of the city where cars are allowed and it is well connected to Venice’s Marco Polo Airport and Treviso Airport; buses shuttle to and from these transport hubs and into the bustling Piazzale Roma.
This is possibly one of the least touristy areas to stay in Venice. For one thing, the western area is surprisingly industrial; it’s here that you’ll find the artificial island of Tronchetto, which is basically a huge car park. But don’t write off the neighborhood entirely as being devoid of history.
Named after a laurel tree that once stood nearby, Chiesa Parrocchiale di San Giacomo dall’Orio is a charming 9th-century church. There’s also the Baroque Chiesa di San Nicola de Tolentino and the compact San Simeone Profeta, set in a warren of back streets, not to mention the waterfront Church of San Stae with its impressively ornate facade.
Let’s discover some of the best places to stay in Venice’s Santa Croce sestiere.
Luxury – Hotel Palazzo Giovanelli e Gran Canal
This hotel takes up room inside a 16th-century palazzo, with polished rooms that naturally boast sweeping views out over Venice’s Grand Canal. Each suite has been carefully curated, allowing for a balance of modern comfort and details that point to the palazzo’s history. The palace has been home to several greats over the years, from a Doge of Venice to Mozart’s family!
Mid-range – Hotel Al Ponte Mocenigo
Set over two floors of a centuries-old Venetian building, the interiors of this hotel have been beautifully decorated with tasteful nods to the history of the hotel. With breakfast included in the price, guests can also dine in the hotel’s charming restaurant for evening meals, surrounded by greenery. It’s just around a 10-minute walk from here to the Ponte di Rialto.
Budget – Casa Caburlotto
It may be relatively affordable, but staying at Casa Caburlotto is also an experience. That’s because it’s housed in a former convent and is run by nuns. The rooms are basic but clean and comfortable, the staff are friendly and there’s a breakfast included in the price. Location-wise, you’ll find it close to Piazzale Roma but down a quiet side street.
Lido di Venezia – Where to stay in Venice for a beach escapade
The 11-kilometer (7-mile) long barrier island of Lido di Venezia is perhaps most famous as host to the annual Venice Film Festival, which takes place at the end of the summer. But there’s more to this long slither of land than glitz and glamor.
Lido di Venezia was one of the earliest settlements in the lagoon, with people living here since the days of Imperial Rome – namely at a town named Metamaucum (now known as Malamocco), situated in the southern portion of the island. Various feuds and conflicts over the centuries – between Venice and Genoa, for example, in the 14th century – resulted in many forts, barracks, and batteries being constructed along its Lido’s shoreline.
Today, however, it’s less about the military credentials and is basically a beach resort. Every summer, Italians flock to this northern getaway – a destination that’s been popular since the early 20th century. I stayed in Lido during one of my most recent trips to Venice and enjoyed the local atmosphere, and getting to the more famous attractions is easy by vaporetto.
If you like beaches, and it’s a summer trip you’re planning, then you may like Lido as a Venice bolt hole thanks to the fewer number of day tripping tourists you’ll find here. Don’t expect the white sand of Sardinian beaches, or crystal clear waters – but for a day or two, it will do.
Here is where to stay in Venice’s Lido.
Luxury – Villa Gabriella B&B
Set in a gorgeous Art Nouveau building, the family-run Villa Gabriella is a beautiful slice of 20th-century charm, harking back to Lido’s early days as a beach resort. There’s a range of apartments and rooms to choose from here, suiting various travelers’ needs.
One of the best things about staying at this landmark hotel are the fabulous views of Venice – and mountains in the distance – from its rooftop terrace.
Mid-range – Hotel Rivamare
This compact hotel has a charm all of its own. Located away from the busy crowds of the center, Hotel Rivamare takes up space in a modern building, with plenty of mid-century modern charm throughout, with retro furnishings, tiled floors, and houseplants. Amenities include an outdoor terrace, breakfast included and bicycle rental on offer, too.
Budget – Hotel Giardinetto Venezia
For an affordable place to stay in Venice Lido, you can’t get much better than this place. It’s a welcoming, down-to-earth property that provides guests with clean and comfortable rooms. Even though it’s budget-friendly, there are fresh, fluffy towels daily and a constant supply of toiletries. There’s also a hearty breakfast included in the price, with a vaporetto stop right nearby as well.
Murano and Burano – Where to stay in Venice for a colorful, picturesque location
Many would argue that Murano and Burano are not where to stay in Venice. In fact, thpeople hardly ever stay in this part of the lagoon. However, these island destinations are charming and full of history.
Set in the Venetian lagoon, the island of Murano is a collection of seven islets separated by canals and linked by several bridges. It’s known the world over for its glass making, which has been taking place here since 1291 when Venetian authorities, worried of the threat of fire from the glass makers’ furnaces, forced the industry to Murano.
By the 14th century, Murano’s glass makers had a high position in society; among other things, they were allowed to wear swords and were immune from prosecution. On the other hand, they were not allowed to leave the Republic of Venice. In fact, for centuries Murano’s glass-making techniques were a protected secret, and the island’s furnaces had a monopoly on the high quality of its glass.
Today, boatloads of day trippers arrive at the Palazzo Giustinian, to visit the Murano Glass Museum. But staying here longer is worthwhile.
Elsewhere, Burano Island (actually made up of five islands originally) is a colorful hidden quarter of Venice that’s bursting with down-to-earth charm. Known for its lacework, Burano is itself laced with narrow canals lined with multicolored houses, where small boats are moored to the pathways.
There’s more to the colorful houses than first meets the eye; in fact, it is a very organized system. If the occupant wants to paint their house, they have to submit a request to the city, who will then take note of colors allowed for that particular lot of houses. The result is an aesthetic feast for the eyes (and your Instagram page).
Sights on lesser-visited Burano include the 16th-century church of San Martino, complete with an interesting leaning bell tower; it also houses a famous artwork, The Crucifixion by Giambattista Tiepolo. Needless to say, both Murano and Burano make for interesting places to stay in Venice if you’re looking for somewhere very local and picturesque, well away from the tourist crowds of San Marco.
Below are some excellent places to stay in Burano and Murano.
Luxury – Murano Palace
Murano Palace overlooks the Rio dei Vetri Canal, and takes up space in an 18th-century house and a 20th-century palazzo. Inside, the hotel has been carefully decorated with period pieces, showcasing the richness of the island’s Murano glass heritage. Expect lavish rooms decorated with ornate touches throughout.
Mid-range – NH Collection Murano Villa
This stylishly designed hotel comes with a range of facilities for guests to make full use of, including a fitness center, a bar and restaurant, and a spa. The interiors have been immaculately thought out, with decor making use of the historic features of the building. In the mornings you start the day here with a breakfast buffet. It’s close to a vaporetto stop, too.
Budget – Casa Sulla Laguna
Casa Sulla Laguna may be a budget-friendly option, but the views out across the water make it seem like you’re staying in a high-end hotel instead.
This guesthouse is where to stay in Venice if you are looking for a quiet spot, where you can enjoy unwinding on the sunny terrace and soaking up the scenery with a drink or bite to eat from the on-site restaurant. It’s also easy to catch the vaporetto from here around the rest of Venice.
Too expensive to stay in Venice? Try Treviso
Are you looking for where to stay in Venice and find it too pricey for your budget? Don’t worry – there are some good towns and cities to stay on the Italian mainland that are in easy reach of Venice itself.
One of these is Treviso, which is around 30 minutes by train from Venice, making trips in and out of the island city a breeze. I visit on a regular basis as my cousin lives there, and a day trip to Venice from Treviso couldn’t be easier!
There’s more to Treviso than just being cheaper than Venice, however. It has long been a part of Venice’s history, becoming part of the republic in the beginning of the 13th century. Subsequently, Treviso was fortified with walls and ramparts still in existence to this day, with navigable waterways and canals crisscrossing the city.
Treviso also has a lot going for it in terms of cuisine. Long known for its fish market, the city is famed in Italy for its eel dishes – in which the serpentine fish is fried or stewed and served with polenta. Most famously, however, Treviso is believed to be home to one of Italy’s most famous desserts, Tiramisu. Not only that, but the city is also renowned as being the home of Prosecco!
Below is a selection of good hotels in Treviso.
Luxury – Dimora del Teatro
Located in the heart of Treviso, Dimora del Teatro is just a 5-minute walk from the train station, meaning catching the train into Venice is super easy from here. There’s a selection of rooms to choose from, each of them individually decorated, refined and spotlessly clean.
Mid-range – Hotel Maggior Consiglio
Situated just outside the historic center of Treviso, Hotel Maggior Consiglio is within easy reach of the city’s airport – and close to the train station, too. Inside, the spacious guest rooms are modern and traditionally decked out. Onsite amenities include a wellness center, swimming pool and a tasty breakfast included in the price.
Budget – B&B Hotel Treviso
This clean, modern property provides guests with a comfortable place to stay in the city. Conveniently situated four kilometers from Treviso Airport, close to the center of town and a 10-minute walk to the train station, this is an affordable option that comes with breakfast included in the price. As a bonus, the staff are endlessly helpful and speak good English.
If you are traveling to Venice, these other posts will be useful:
- The Best Venice Travel Tips
- How To Get From Rome To Venice
- How To Get St. Mark’s Basilica Tickets
- How To Get Doge Palace Tickets
- What To Wear In Venice
- How To Get From Marco Polo Airport To Venice