Why you should go
This tour will take you to some of the most fascinating, yet lesser known attractions in Venice, such as “Palazzo Grimani”, St. Maria Formosa’s church and the ‘Acqua Alta’ bookshop. The itinerary is designed to explore the city off the beaten path, walking through alleys and small bridges across the ‘sestiere’ of Castello, one of the least tourist neighborhoods in Venice.
The first site on this route is “Palazzo Grimani” (Grimani Palace), former residence of the patrician Grimani family, which has recently been renovated and open to the public as a ‘residence-museum’.
The exhibition ‘Domus Grimani 1594 – 2019’ celebrates the collection returning home after 400 years. The most spectacular room of the palace is the Tribune, the sculpture gallery, featuring stands and niches set in the wall to display some of the finest statues and busts, which were part of one of the largest art collections in the sixteenth-century Venice.
Not far from “Palazzo Grimani”, you will be walking through some of the best-preserved medieval lanes, across pointed arches and cobbled streets, the foundations of which were laid many centuries ago. While strolling around in a maze of narrow lanes, you will be heading to Campo Santa Maria Formosa, one of the largest and most lively squares in the city. The landmark of this prominent setting is Santa Maria Formosa Church, the first church in Venice dedicated to the Virgin Mary in the 7th century A.D.
Just around the corner from Santa Maria Formosa, strolling down streets that are easily overlooked, you will discover a hidden place where you will be thrown back in time. It is the peculiar ‘Acqua Alta’ bookshop, an international bookselling place where piles of volumes are stored on ad-hoc shelves and versatile containers, in an attempt to withstand floods in times of high tide. It is a place where you are literally surrounded by heaps of books in an otherworldly atmosphere, which reminds you of the fairy tales and ghost stories taking place once upon a time. This is a rare opportunity for book lovers to find old and new publications, as well as for visitors to enjoy a peaceful reading spot away from the suffocating crowds.
In a nutshell, Secret Venice tour is an excellent choice to discover Venice through alternative, yet spectacular walking paths.
- Marco Polo House (external)
- Malibran Theater (external)
- Grimani Palace (internal visit)
- Acqua Alta bookstore (internal visit)
- Get to know one of the best classical art collections in Venice
- Discover the baroque Santa Maria Formosa
- Tour guide
- Entrance ticket to Grimani Palace
- Hotel pick-up
- No refund will be accepted for no shows or late comers
- The tour will be provided rain or shine; in event of exceptional high tide it might be cancelled and refund will be provided
- Children up to 5 years are free
- Wheelchairs not accessible