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Venice, Italy

Venice & islands

Italy's floating treasure-trove

Italy tailor-made holidays & Venice city breaks


Italy’s great arrogance was to site one of its finest cities atop a lagoon – a labyrinth of laneways and waterways fringed with aristocratic excess. Our collection of Venice holidays include stays in the city’s finest hotels, all handpicked by our experts. There’s even the chance to arrive in unmatched style aboard one of the world’s greatest luxury trains – the Venice Simplon-Orient-Express.

Venice’s rich history

Venice’s mercantile past has brought in great wealth over its near 1,400-year history as a once all-powerful republic. Its unique position and progressive innovations both economic and technological led to privileged relations with such far-flung exoticisms as Asia, Egypt and the Byzantium Empire.

Maybe it’s this unheralded level of influence that lead to the sheer audacity of building a floating city of marble palaces, gilded basilicas and treasure-trove art galleries where the main thoroughfares are grand canals and back alleys wind past hidden churches. Whatever the reason, today the city's waterways are a joy to explore, whether on a traditional gondola punt or by the ubiquitous vaporetto water taxis that ply the waters of the Grand Canal and out to the islands of the Venetian Lagoon.

Traditional punts on the canals of Venice
Punting in Venice

Venice’s standout art, culture and cuisine

It’s this rich history that’s informed not only the architecture – the golden Byzantine mosaics of the St. Mark’s Basilica are particularly impressive – but the celebrated cuisine too. Exotic flavours hint at ancient spice routes while just-caught seafood represents more local contributions.

And, in fact, much of Venice’s beauty is home-grown unique, best exemplified by the Doge’s Palace. This Gothic palazzo hides a stunning array of whole-wall paintings and frescoed ceilings behind an elaborately arched façade; needless to say, it overlooks sweeping, watery vistas.

Exterior of Doge's Palace, Grand Canal, Venice
Doge's Palace, Venice

Amazing hotels and journeys to remember

Indeed, it’s this unashamed sense of grandeur that’s reflected in the city’s present-day collection of hotels, from the Baroque sensibilities of the iconic Cipriani and Baglioni Hotel Luna to the three-palace setting of the world-renowned Danieli.

And, what better way to arrive in this city of extravagance than on board the world’s most glamourous train? We’ve got a full range of breaks travelling aboard the Venice Simplon-Orient-Express, from the classic London to Venice route to trips combining Italy’s great lakes and its capital of opera – Verona.

The Danieli, Venice

The Venetian Islands

Where most cities dissolve into an endless urban sprawl, Venice’s suburbs consist of a series of picturesque islands floating in the azure waters of its lagoon. It’s a delightful setting for day trips out of the city, taking in such star attractions as Burano, famed for its colourful houses and homespun restaurants serving up delicious seafood feasts, and Murano, whose workshops are responsible for some of the world’s most ornate glasswork.

Other favourites include Guidecca, which offers arguably the best views of Venice from afar, and Torcello, whose 12th-century mosaics are the oldest and most intricate in this corner of Italy.

Burano, Italy


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Special offers in Venice & islands

Ca'Sagredo Portego Hall

Ca’Sagredo, Venice

3-night luxury holiday from £495 pp incl. flights & transfers


Stay 3 pay 2 discount - Low & Shoulder seasons only – Save up to £115 pp
Book by: 31 March 2020

This 15th century private palazzo is a favourite among discerning travellers and Condé Nast’s judges alike.

Venice Simplon-Orient-Express

Venice Simplon-Orient-Express: London to Venice

4-day luxury rail journey from £2,740 pp incl. flights


Exclusive offer: 10% Spring departure discount – Save up to £305 pp
Book by: 18 October 2019

The signature route – Alpine vistas and French countryside paired with champagne receptions, multi-course meals and a luxury Venetian stay, reached by private water taxi.


Venice Simplon-Orient-Express: Venice to London

4-day tailor-made journey from £2,445 pp incl. flights


Exclusive offer: 10% Spring departure discount – Save up to £250 pp
Book by: 18 October 2019

After a stay in a canal-side palace, reached by private water taxi, indulge with bar-car drinks and fine dining as you sweep over the Alps and through rural Europe.

Venice Simplon-Orient-Express

Venice Simplon-Orient-Express: Return to Venice

5-day luxury rail journey from £4,610 pp incl. flights


Return fare discount – Save up to £715 pp
Book by: 31 October 2019

Travel both ways on the world's greatest train, enjoying indulgent onboard dining, water-taxi transfers and a luxury stay in a Venetian palace.

See all offers

Venice holiday ideas

Grand Canal, Venice

Luxury Venice City-Break

4-day tailor-made city-break from £915 pp incl. flights

Explore Venice and its island surrounds in style while staying in Grand Canal luxury. Along with flights, private transfers and a choice of hotels, we've included a host of experiences, from gondola rides and lagoon cruises to an expert-led city tour.

Florence, Italy

The Italian Job: Rome, Florence & Venice

6-day tailor-made journey from £1,305 pp incl. flights


Early booking discount – Save up to £140 pp
Book by: 31 October 2019

Explore the iconic sights, fabulous architecture, gourmet restaurants and world-class museums and galleries of Rome, Venice and Florence on this classic tailor-made holiday.

Florence, Italy

Venice Simplon-Orient-Express: Venice & Florence

6-day tailor-made journey from £3,235 pp incl. flights

Knit together luxury stays in two of Italy’s city greats with the world's finest rail journey, enjoying guided tours, gourmet dining and piano-accompanied drinks.

Roman Forum, Rome

Venice Simplon-Orient-Express: London to Venice & Rome

6-day luxury rail journey from £3,275 pp incl. flights

Combine a once-in-a-lifetime journey aboard the Venice Simplon-Orient-Express with luxury stays in Venice and Rome, including a dinner and tour in the latter.

See all itinerary ideas

Top places to stay in Venice & islands

Baglioni Hotel Luna

Baglioni Hotel Luna, Venice

Guide price from £745 pp incl. flights

Just a stone’s throw from Piazza San Marco, Baglioni Hotel Luna looks out towards the island of San Giorgio, across the lagoon and the San Marco Basin in Venice.

Ca'Sagredo Portego Hall

Ca’Sagredo, Venice

3-night luxury holiday from £495 pp incl. flights & transfers


Stay 3 pay 2 discount - Low & Shoulder seasons only – Save up to £115 pp
Book by: 31 March 2020

This 15th century private palazzo is a favourite among discerning travellers and Condé Nast’s judges alike.

Hotel Danieli

Hotel Danieli, Venice

Grand & elegant hotel

Spread over three palaces – 14th, 17th and 19th century iterations – art and antiques ensure a historically luxurious stay worthy of the Venetian aristocracy.

Canal Bar, Bauer Palazzo

Bauer Palazzo, Venice

Historic hotel

This palatial gem dates back to the 1700s, paired today with excellent dining and a contemporary Art Deco wing. It’s all set to spectacular city views, best taken in from the rooftop Jacuzzi terrace or the Grand Canal bar, where the mixologist-prepared cocktails are excellent.

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When to go to Venice & islands

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Most visitors to Venice will encounter rain at some point, though the famous acqua alta (high water) floods tend to occur in the months of November and December. The summer months see a sharp spike in temperature, as well as tourist crowds, so we recommend that for many the best time to visit Venice will be in the spring or autumn. Winter travellers may encounter snow, but it rarely lingers on the ground for longer than a few hours.

See regional weather

Venice & islands articles

  • Living La Dolce Vita: A cultural guide to Italy

    The art, music, food and festivals that have helped make Italy one of the world's most enduring holiday destinations. Read our guide to living the sweet life, and how to make the most of this beautiful country.

  • Istanbul Grand Suite

    The Venice Simplon-Orient-Express – a cabin guide

    Don't know your twin cabins from your grand suites? Product manager Andy Austen takes a closer look at the different cabin types on board the Venice Simplon-Orient-Express to make sure you select the one that’s right for you.

  • Venice Grand Suite, Venice Simplon-Orient-Express

    New Grand Suites for the Venice Simplon-Orient-Express

    The exciting new additions to the Venice Simplon-Orient-Express and how they’re set to elevated the experience to true ultra-luxury with the likes of en-suite shower rooms, private dining and free-flowing champagne.

  • Rocky Mountaineer

    The world’s best journeys by rail

    Travel in style with the ultimate collection of train journeys, chosen by our rail experts reporting back from the tracks. There’s everything from such old favourites as the Orient Express to new classics as Canada’s Rocky Mountaineer.

See all articles

Meet our Venice & islands experts

Speak to a tailor-made specialist on 020 7590 0796

Meet the team

Why book with Wexas Travel?

At Wexas, we specialise in bespoke travel experiences. Our itineraries are just samples of what we can arrange, and can be changed depending on your precise needs, finances and ideas by our experienced destination specialists.

Contact one of our consultants on 020 7590 0796 to discuss how we can tailor your holiday.

Learn why Wexas is the leader in creating luxury holidays. What is tailor-made travel?

Expert advice & support

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Every step of the way

Every step of the way

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