There are so many great places to visit near Venice, Italy.
If you’re looking for day trips from Venice or even short breaks, you have a lot to choose from! There’s the sea, there are mountains, cities and towns, and you can even go abroad!
So if you’re still wondering what other places to add to your Venice itinerary, we’ve got you covered here.
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Best places to Visit near Venice, Italy
There are some places just by Venice that many people, us included, add to their Venice itineraries. Those are, for example, visiting the islands of Murano, Burano, and Lido.
In this article, though, you’ll find places that are actually further away from Venice and not really a part of it.
And there are so many places to visit!
Cities near Venice – perfect for day trips from Venice by train
The train system in Italy is very well made, which makes it easy to use them for all kinds of trips. I know people who have travelled extensively all over Italy just by using trains!
And since there is a huge train station in Venice that is very close to the historical centre, it makes sense to go on day trips by train.
Of course, you can rent a car as well, but if you’re just planning on a couple of trips, it might not make sense financially.
So, here are some of the best day trips from Venice by train.
Vicenza – an easy day trip from Venice or a great base outside it
Contributed by Dhara of It’s Not About the Miles
If you are looking for places to visit near Venice, you can’t go wrong with Vicenza.
Located on the Bacchiglione River, Vicenza’s historic centre boasts gorgeous architecture, with many monuments by Andrea Palladio, the famous Renaissance architect. The historic centre, and villas built in the surrounding countryside by Palladio, are designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
One of the best things to do in Vicenza is just wander the streets of the centro storico, admiring the beautiful buildings. Linger in the main square, where you can gawk at the Basilica Palladiana, and snap a photo of the slender Torre Bissara: you can’t enter the tower or climb to the top, sadly.
A short distance from the centre of town, you’ll find the famous La Rotonda, a villa that is said to have inspired many other famous buildings around the world, including Thomas Jefferson’s Monticello and the White House.
You can also climb the portico to the top of Monte Berico to visit the sanctuary. From the grounds of the church, you get spectacular views over the city of Vicenza.
Vicenza is easy to visit from Venice: you can take the train from the Santa Lucia station in Venice and arrive in under an hour. You can definitely visit Vicenza for the day, because its historic centre is compact, but you can also spend longer if you are looking for a quieter base in Veneto. Antico Hotel Vicenza is a great place to stay!
Bologna – a place to visit near Venice for some great culinary experiences
Recommended by Angelo from Travlinmad Slow Travel blog
Yes, Venice, Italy is one of the most beautiful cities in the world, but it’s also one of the most heavily touristed as well. When you need a break from the crush of the crowds, take the high-speed train to Bologna. You’ll be there in less than an hour and a half making it a perfect day trip.
There are many more things to do in Bologna than can be done on a single day trip making it perfect for a full day experience. Bologna has a laid-back feel and is world famous for its excellent cuisine like tortellini en brodo, tagliatelle Bolognese, prosciutto, and parmigiano reggiano. It is also one of the most fascinating and historic cities in Italy.
You can enjoy the city by staying in the pedestrians only historic district surrounding the Piazza Maggiore. Throughout the historic area are 25 miles of the UNESCO World Heritage porticoes dating to the 11th century. On a day trip make time to climb the Asinelli Tower for a bird’s-eye view of the city.
Definitely wander the narrow streets of the Quadrilatero with its food stalls, cafes, and restaurants. Buy a few things to munch and grab a seat in the 15th century Osteria del Sole where you can chat with locals over a glass of wine.
Padua – definitely worth visiting
Contributed by Christine Rogador of Italy In Focus.
Are you looking for a place to visit near Venice? Padua is a perfect place to visit on a day trip.
Padua, also known as Padova in Italian, is a historic city located in the Veneto region of northeastern Italy, considered the oldest city in Northern Italy. It is well known for its historical frescoes and marketplace.
There are so many fascinating places that you can visit and explore in Padua. You can start your journey by admiring the prominent and historical pilgrimage of Basilica of Saint Anthony, which houses the tomb of Saint Anthony; this church features magnificent Byzantine-style domes.
You can also wander around Prato della Valle. This is one of the largest squares in Europe and one of the iconic landmarks and symbols of Padua. It is an oval-shaped space surrounded by a canal and adorned with beautiful statues. The square is often bustling with locals and tourists enjoying walks, picnics, and social gatherings.
Do not forget the charming botanical garden of The Orto Botanico di Padova, the oldest university botanical garden, which houses a vast collection of plants from around the world and serves as an important research and educational institution.
Explore Prato della Valle Market, the bustling open-air market in Prato della Valle, where you can find fresh produce, local delicacies, clothing, and more. Immerse yourself in the vibrant atmosphere of this popular local market.
These are just a few of the best things to do in Padua. The city’s rich history, cultural heritage, architectural treasures, and vibrant atmosphere make it an enticing destination for travelers seeking a unique and enriching experience.
An easy day trip from Venice to Verona
Contributed by Chelsea from Adventures of Chels.
For a great place to visit near Venice, Italy, head over to the beautiful town of Verona.
Located roughly 1.5 hours away from Venice is quaint Verona. It’s such a beautiful and romantic place that Shakespeare himself used it as the setting for his timeless play “Romeo and Juliet.” Between the winding streets, quintessential italian architecture, and panoramic views, this city is a must visit in Italy.
While you’re there make sure to visit Juliet’s House. You can take a tour of the inside of the house, but it’s the balcony outside in the courtyard that’s believed to have inspired the famous balcony scene in Shakespeare’s “Romeo and Juliet.” Leave a letter to Juliet in the designated mailbox about your woes of love and, though it may take a few months, you’ll get a response!
Visit the Verona Arena, which hosts operas during the summer, and take a stroll through colourful Pizaza Bra. For some incredible views of the city from above, visit Torre dei Lamberti, and Castel San Pietro.
If you plan to stay to spend a night (or two) in Verona, consider booking at Hotel Milano & SPA. This hotel offers clean rooms in a great location for a competitive price. It’s just what you need for your stay in Verona.
Enjoy your visit to this beautiful town!
Ravenna – a day trip off the beaten path
Recommended by Rai from A Rai Of Light
Ravenna, found in the Emilia-Romagna region, may be small and not as well-known as other popular places in Italy, but it is still worth a visit. The city has a long and rich history as one of the most important cities in Europe during the Roman and early Christian era that can still be seen today through its many archaeological sites.
Highlights of a visit include the octagonal Basilica di San Vitale, the 6th-century Sant’Apollinare Nuovo, and the cross-shaped Mausoleum of Galla Placidia.
Ravenna has a vibrant artistic culture and is most famous for its colourful Christian and Byzantine mosaics that can be seen on many of the city’s buildings. Walking around to view the intricate designs of these mosaics that date back to the 5th and 6th centuries is one of the most unforgettable experiences in Italy.
There are also a number of museums and galleries showcasing contemporary works alongside traditional art forms such as ceramics and glassblowing.
Despite being a small city, Ravenna offers easy access to other destinations in the region. The city is also easily reached from Venice with 4 daily trains connecting the cities.
Best places to visit near Venice for one day or multi-day trips
So, with these places it’s your choice. Theoretically, you can do a day trip here, but in my opinion, they really do require more than one day.
Dolomites – close enough for a day trip from Venice, but more days are definitely needed
Dolomites are incredibly popular, and it’s for a good reason. These mountains, part of the UNESCO world heritage, are just spectacularly beautiful.
Yes, they theoretically are close enough for a day trip from Venice – it takes a bit less than 3h to drive there from Venice if you have a car. So with an early start and a late finish, theoretically, you can make a day trip.
But realistically, you can’t exactly enjoy… well, anything on a day trip. I spent 2 whole days and a bit in Dolomites in April, and it still seemed like way too little time there. We just managed a road trip to some cool locations, but it wasn’t possible to do any hikes.
And there is so much to see and do in the Dolomites! Some of the most beautiful mountain lakes are there, such as the Instagram-famous Lake Braies. And there are so many interesting hikes to do, so many mountain passes to cross, and so many cute little towns to visit!
My favourite mountain passes are Passo Giau and Passo Pordoi (among others). The best towns? Cortina d’Ampezzo and Dobbiaco. We did a hike to lake Sorapis with Michal, which was spectacular, and of course, there’s the iconic Tre Cime di Lavaredo as well.
As you see, so, so many things to do! So you should stay for at least 3 nights there.
And where to stay? I can definitely recommend a cute little apartment in Dobbiaco called Haus Greg if you are ok with self-catering – it helps save quite a bit, as the restaurants are quite pricey in the Dolomites. Or Hotel Lajadira&Spa if you’d like something more luxurious.
A day trip from Venice to Lake Garda – can be done with a car
Contributed by Jolene from Wanderlust Storytellers
Lake Garda is a must visit when you are in Venice. Whether you do a day trip or stay for a few days it’s the biggest and most beautiful lake you’ll find in all of Europe.
One of the places that I just loved visiting is the Madonna Della Corona. This church was built back in 1625, and it’s a sight to behold. It’s nestled on the side of a mountain, and the view from there is breathtakingly beautiful. The church itself is just stunning, with ornate dedications and a really cool steeple.
If you want to really explore Lake Garda, I highly recommend renting a boat from Limone. You get a quick lesson on how to drive the boat, and then you’re off! You can head out to see some of the most amazing waterfalls around the lake, or even visit the famous James Bond tunnel. How cool is that?
For nature lovers, a hike up Monte Baldo will treat you to some wild nature and seriously breathtaking views. There are routes that are great for kids, or you can even take the cable car.
If you decide to stay at Lake Garda for a few days, I suggest renting a car so you can explore all the beautiful towns around the lake, the drive itself is pretty impressive too!
Related: a guide to driving in Italy
And if you’re bringing the little ones along, make sure to check out Gardaland Theme Park. They’ve got rides that the whole family can enjoy, and it’s a great way to mix things up a bit.
There are so many charming villages with accommodation options to suit everyone’s taste if you are staying at Lake Garda. Whether you’re looking for something romantic, luxurious, or family-friendly, you’ll find it.
Personally, my favourite town to stay in was Limone Sul Garda. We booked this amazing place called Appartamento Delux Villa Castello, and let me tell you, it was incredible. The place was so spacious, and it had not one, not two, but three different balconies! And the views of Lake Garda from there were absolutely breathtaking.
A trip to Lake Garda is definitely worth it and you won’t regret it, I promise!
Grado – another day trip from Venice if you have a car, but not with a train
Contributed by Martina of PlacesofJuma
Grado is located on the picturesque Italian Adriatic coast and is a real treasure for a day or multi-day trip from Venice. With its charming atmosphere, stunning beaches and rich cultural heritage, Grado offers the perfect conditions for a seaside getaway. Both couples looking for a romantic getaway and families with children will love this town and its beautiful surroundings.
From gorgeous beaches to fascinating landmarks, Grado really has a lot to offer. The long sandy beach of Grado is an absolute highlight and the beach resorts still exude the historic charm of times gone by. For more than 100 years ago, the resort was an imperial health resort, where even then the motto was: see and be seen. The historic old town is also beautiful, with its winding alleys, quaint stores and cozy cafés that invite you to explore.
A special experience is a boat trip to the church island of Barbana, an important place of pilgrimage in Grado. Even the trip from the picturesque harbor through the lagoon of Grado is an unforgettable experience. Other recommended excursions include the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Aquileia and the Val Cavanata nature reserve, where you can even see flamingos.
For a perfect stay, I recommend the Hotel & Apartments Eldorado as a small, charming retreat. This modern and new hotel offers spacious rooms with stunning sea views, a delicious breakfast, and free bicycles to explore the surrounding area. An absolute must for dinner is the Trattoria Alla Borsa. This cozy trattoria in the heart of the historic old town serves delicious Italian cuisine, including fresh fish dishes and homemade pasta. The location, surrounded by charming stone houses, is also simply unbeatable.
Trieste – best place to visit near Venice for some incredible architecture
Submitted by Noel from Travel Photo Discovery
If you are looking for a cool place to visit that is a short drive from Venice then Visiting Trieste is an easy day trip or overnight stay. The city facing the Adriatic sea is the largest city bordering the eastern edge of Italy and Slovenia and definitely worth the drive. The easiest way to get to Trieste from Venice would be to take the bus shuttles that go through both cities regularly throughout the day. It takes about an hour drive from Venice to reach the historic district of Trieste.
Trieste is large but the historic district is compact and easy to walk around with pedestrian streets, large piazzas with flowing fountains, a grand City Hall, ancient Roman ruins and so many other wonderful attractions that you can easily cover on foot. It’s easy to visit the tourist office at the main piazza and pick up a map of the historic district and tour the many attractions in the area.
The architecture is beautiful and grand covering a range of influences from Italian, Austro-Hungarian and Slovenian styles that range from the historic medieval past to more ornate Neoclassical and Austrian creations. It’s fun to just explore on foot and wander through the various neighbourhoods with map on hand and finding some cool shops, popular coffee shops and places to hang out and even try a local restaurant offering some traditional food from the area. Trieste is easy, comfortable to walk around with stunning vistas, piazzas and architecture. It really is a great getaway that is a short distance from Venice and worth a visit.
Florence – a great place to visit near Venice for art, history, and food
Recommended by Daniel from North Carolina Travel Guides
The city of Florence is one of the best places to visit near Venice. One can reach the city by car within 3 hours and by train in about 2 hours and 15 minutes.
Florence is the capital city of the region of Tuscany, and the city was an important city during medieval times and the Renaissance. In the past, Florence was very influential in Europe in terms of culture, art, and economics.
The city’s historic centre is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and it contains many interesting historic buildings and monuments, such as Ponte Vecchio, the Cathedral of Santa Maria del Fiore, and Palazzo Vecchio.
There are also very good museums in the city, such as the Uffizi Gallery, where works by Michelangelo, da Vinci, and Titian can be seen, and the Galleria dell’Accademia, where the famous David statue by Michelangelo can be seen.
When walking in the city of Florence it feels you are walking in an outdoor museum. Everywhere you look, you can see statues, monuments, and beautiful architecture.
The city also has many good restaurants that serve authentic Italian food, such as Essenziale. Mercato Centrale Firenze is a food market that can also be great to go to when you want to try artisan food when you are in Florence.
Best places to visit near Venice that require at least one night there
So many of the best places to visit near Venice, Italy, are just a tad too far for a day trip. But they do make incredible additions to your whole trip to Italy and shouldn’t be left off many itineraries.
Trentino – one of the best places near Venice for some nature and tranquillity
Contributed by Lavina D’Souza of Continent Hop
While exploring the beautiful countryside of Italy, I stumbled upon a hidden gem called Valle di Cembra, Trentino. It was an absolute delight! Nestled amongst rolling hills, just a short drive away from Venice, this charming valley stole my heart.
I spent a couple of days in Valle di Cembra, and I could have easily stayed longer. What I loved most about this place were its tranquillity and untouched beauty. The vineyards stretched as far as the eye could see with some of them dotted with castles along the way.
The naturally formed Segonzano pyramids were quite a surprise as I wasn’t aware that such a thing existed in this part of Italy.
For wine enthusiasts, a visit to Cantina dei Baroni is a must. This winery produces exceptional wines, and its knowledgeable staff guided me through a delightful wine-tasting experience.
To immerse myself in the local culture, I visited the Area Archeologica Acqua Fredda, where I had the opportunity to learn the traditional art of making copper artefacts. To add a unique twist to my adventure, I visited Bee Wellness Contadino, where I had the chance to relax in a hut surrounded by the sound of buzzing bees.
I had the pleasure of staying at Hotel Belvedere during my time in Valle di Cembra. It was a fantastic choice. The hotel offers stunning views, a warm and welcoming atmosphere, and a convenient location.
If you’re looking for an off-the-beaten-path destination near Venice, don’t miss the opportunity to explore this enchanting valley. You won’t be disappointed.
Milan – a fashion capital with incredible history
Contributed by Kristin from Scotland Less Explored
Milan is the fashion capital of Italy, but it is not all about shopping. The city also has a rich history of art and amazing architecture and it is home to one of Da Vinci’s most famous paintings.
In terms of architecture nothing beats the Duomo, one of the largest cathedrals in the world. Construction started in 1386 and only finished in 1965. One of the highlights is that you can walk on the roof. The views of the city, the plaza and the cathedral are fantastic. Tickets can be bought online in advance to skip the long queues.
Next door is one of the prettiest shopping centres in the world called Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II. It is worth a visit, not for the shops, but for the architecture, glass domes and mosaics.
Milan might not be able to compete with Rome and Florence when it comes to art but it is home to one of Da Vinci’s most famous paintings, The Last Supper. Seeing this painting cannot be arranged on the spur of a moment since tickets are limited and book out months in advance. Make sure you buy your ticket at the official site which has the lowest prices.
If you still have time left visit the museums at Castello Sforzesco or head to Milan’s canals in Navigli. Walk along the canals and stop for a drink or bite to eat at one of the many canal side bars and restaurants.
Prosecco hills – a great wine region near Venice, with the best Prosecco in the world
Contributed by Maddy from Venice Travel Tips
The Prosecco hills are one of the best places to visit near Venice and a well-renowned wine region located in northeast Italy. This wine-making area extends into both the Veneto and Friuli-Venezia Giulia regions, but it is only in a circumscribed area that the best Prosecco in the world, the Prosecco Superiore Valdobbiadene Conegliano DOCG, is produced.
Since 2019, the Conegliano e Valdobbiadene Prosecco hills have been a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Only in the area of Conegliano, Valdobbiadene and Asolo, where the Glera grapes are grown at a certain altitude in mineral-rich clayey soil, it is possible to produce the best Prosecco.
If you’re currently in Venice, you can join a guided tour or arrange your own transportation.
I recommend visiting the Prosecco hills from late spring to early autumn to enjoy pleasant temperatures and make the most of its incredible views.
Staying two or three days is the ideal time to explore the Prosecco hills at a slower pace. This way, you can meet local producers and also taste the delicious local cuisine.
On my list of the best places to visit in the Prosecco hills, there’s the Locanda Sandi for dinner and for an aperitif or Osteria Senza Oste, a place where you can admire stunning views of the surrounding vineyards.
Lake Como – one of the must-visit places near Venice
Submitted by Katie from KatieCafTravel.com
Lake Como is hands down one of the most beautiful places to visit near Venice, Italy.
In just a four-hour drive, you can escape the bustling canals of Venice and be greeted by the serene beauty of Lake Como.
To get there, I suggest hopping on the direct train that runs daily from Como to Venice. The trains in Italy are super convenient – once you arrive at the station you can use Uber or call a cab to get to your hotel from Como’s train station.
While Como is close to Venice in proximity, it’s a completely different vibe and ambiance. Picture crystal-clear blue waters embraced by lush green mountains – it’s like something out of a fairytale. Unlike Venice, which is known for its canals and historic architecture, Lake Como is a more peaceful and calm travel destination, great for if you need a break from the tourist crowds!
Now, let’s talk food! While there are tons of 5-star upscale restaurants at Lake Como, the one place that blew me away when I visited was Trattoria San Giacomo. An unassuming traditional Italian restaurant, you can get truly great Italian fare here (not tourist food!). And if you’re looking to dine with a view, you must try La Terrazza Lake Como.
Lake Como is a must-visit. Its close proximity to Venice, breathtaking landscapes, and varied dining options make it a destination you won’t want to miss.
Lake Iseo – one of the best off-the-beaten-path places to visit near Venice, Italy
Lake Iseo – or lago d’Iseo in Italian – is located a little bit more than 2h car ride away from Venice. It’s a real hidden gem that is mostly known only to locals.
And, as much as I’d like it to remain a hidden gem, I believe more people should enjoy the beauty and peace that is Lake Iseo. We lived there for a bit more than a year, and everyone who visited us called it “a paradise”.
When visiting lake Iseo, our favourite things to do are going around the lake with a car and stopping in the little villages on the way. Driving up to the village of Parzanica offers some of the best views over the lake, but the ride is not really for the faint-hearted.
You might also like: Venice photo diary
Another thing to do is hiking, as there are many incredible hiking trails around lake Iseo. My personal favourite is Corna Trentapassi, but Michal really loves Monte Bronzone or Monte Gulliermo, as well as Punta Almana, which is a bit further away.
Of course, going to Monte Isola – the biggest lake island in Europe – is something that should be done, too. But being able to do it depends on the season you’re visiting.
Unlike the other popular lakes in Italy, lake Iseo is definitely less touristy with worse public transport connections. That’s why for visiting it I recommend renting a car – it gives you better options for seeing many things.
We usually stay in Sarnico when going to lake Iseo, as it offers the best balance between “touristy” and “local”. A great hotel there is Riad Rooms. If you’d like something more luxurious, check out Hotel Ulivi in Paratico – it’s just over the bridge.
Our favourite restaurants in Sarnico are definitely La Pagoda di Eolo and Al Tram, both great for regional specialities.
Places abroad that are near Venice and worth visiting
Since Venice is not so far from the Italian border and it has a port, there are actually quite a few countries that you can visit on a short trip from it.
Incredibly, you don’t necessarily have to spend a night abroad – it can easily be on a day trip from Venice!
Skocjan Caves in Slovenia
Recommended by Kamila from My Wanderlust
Located around 175 km east of Venice, Skocjan Caves in Slovenia is one of the most spectacular places you can visit in Central Europe.
The place became a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1986 and attracts numerous visitors each year. And it is popular for a reason – Skocjan Caves is a breathtaking and mind-blowing place, one you will not forget for a long time. This is where you will find one of the largest underground river canyons in the world and enormous underground chambers of exceptional beauty.
The first part of your trip, when you go underground, is done with the guide. It lasts around 1,5 hours, and in that time, you will walk around 2,5 km, including 400 stairs. Along the way, you will stop a few times when the guide gives commentary on the place or points to interesting spots, such as the old, 19th-century tourist trail inside the cave.
Once you are done with it, you can choose from three routes back to the visitors’ centre, varying in the distance and the number of steps you need to walk – each of them is beautiful so no matter which one you choose, you are in for a treat.
Altogether, you can expect to spend some 2-3 hours visiting Skocjan Caves.
When you are in the area, you can also include the Adriatic seaside of Slovenia in your itinerary.
The easiest way to get from Venice to Skocjan Caves is by car; you can also use the train, as all the international trains from Italy to Ljubljana stop in the nearby Divaca.
Istria in Croatia
By Karen of Outdoor Adventure Sampler
The Istria area of Croatia is a perfect overnight trip from Venice. The heart of the Istrian Peninsular is a three-hour drive from Venice. It is also possible to reach the major cities of Istria by train or bus.
Istria is known as a famous wine producing region. The terracotta soil and the breezes from the Adriatic Sea make for ideal conditions for growing grapes. The rich red wines of Istria combined with the abundant local foods make for an unforgettable experience. The highlands area is also famous for truffles. You can take a tour with a local truffle hunter with trained dogs to find this underground gourmet specialty.
The hill town of Motovun that dates back to Medieval times is a recommended stop. Stroll through the walled Old Town and enjoy a panoramic view of the surrounding countryside. Tasting a truffle-infused dish at a Motovun restaurant can’t be missed.
The beaches of the Istrian Peninsula are popular for sun-seekers and water enthusiasts. Rovinj, a city on the Adriatic sea, is well-loved for its crystalline waters, historic buildings, and twisting cobblestone streets. Make sure to get out on the water to see the old city from the sea. A dolphin watching or sunset cruise, or a sea kayaking trip in Rovinj is delightful.
Piran in Slovenia
Recommended by Erin of Wanderlust With Kids
Located on the Slovenian coast, Piran is one of the loveliest towns on the Adriatic Coast and an easy visit from Venice.
Whether you take the ferry from Venice to Piran or drive along the Italian coast to Slovenia, Piran is worth a visit.
Stroll along the narrow cobblestone streets that wind through the historical centre or sample some delicious seafood at any one of the numerous cafes in the Old Town. There are plenty of things to do in Piran, but it’s also a town where you can wander and get lost in the laneways while relaxing and soaking up the charming atmosphere.
Piran also boasts stunning views. Take a walk along the promenade for some fantastic views across the Adriatic Sea or climb to the top of the bell tower for some views of Piran from above. Walking along the old Venetian walls also provides some stunning views of the city, as well as the coastlines with Croatia on one side and Italy on the other.
As the day draws to a close, find a spot along the rocks or at one of the restaurants along the waterfront to witness the spectacular sunset. It’s a perfect way to spend a day or weekend away from Venice.