Begin at the governmental seat of historic Venice on the Grand Canal, in St. Mark’s Square. (On the other hand, avoid staying in this neighborhood, where many hotels are sub-standard and overpriced.) The palace rooms are covered with frescoes by Renaissance greats like Titian and Tintoretto, who were commissioned to show off the city’s wealth, at a time when Venice was a global economic powerhouse and the dukes were the Warren Buffetts of their day. Skip the line by buying tickets at the nearby city tourist office, whose guides are well-informed and passionate both about their city’s history and its uncertain future.
Next St. Mark’s Basilica