Everything You Need to Know to Enjoy a Gondola Ride in Venice
A gondola ride in Venice is the ultimate romantic experience to enjoy with your significant other.
This is not just an activity that every couple should do at least once in their life. It’s also an experience that any traveler should enjoy in Venice.
That’s because a gondola ride allows you to observe the city from a different – the most traditional – point of view.
But what is a gondola ride? The gondola is the symbol of Venice and the most magical way to explore the lagoon.
The origin and history of the gondola are still a mystery, with Turkey, Malta, and Greece also claiming to have invented it. However, the earliest documentary evidence of the gondola is in Venice and dates back to 1094. According to this document, the boat was a gift of the then Doge, Vitale Falier, to the Venetians, who were demanding an easy way to move around the city’s waterways.
But it was only 400 years later, in 1400, that the first visual representations appeared, thanks to paintings by Bellini and Carpaccio.
The number of gondolas in Venice increased over the centuries. During the Renaissance, there were 9000 of them. The aesthetics of the boat also changed. Today, there are about 400 gondolas in the Venetian lagoon, all with the same timeless design.
But where and when can you take a gondola in Venice? And how much does a ride cost? Keep reading to find out.
How Much is a Gondola Ride in Venice Cost, and Where Should You Take It?
Anyone who wants to take a gondola ride should know it’s not cheap. Luckily, in May 2014, the city government took matters into its hands and regulated the prices to avoid nasty surprises for the tourists.
Based on these official rates, a gondola tour in Venice can cost between €85 and €100. These rates are per gondola, not per person.
The actual price also depends on when you take the ride. For example, €85 is the price for a half an hour ride during the day, while a 35-minute gondola ride by night will cost €100.
The daytime and evening rates are also set out by the official rules.
- The daytime rate applies from 9 am to 7 pm
- The evening rate applies from 7 pm to 3 am
If you want to hire a gondola in Venice, you should go to one of the official gondola stations: San Marco, Rialto, Ferrovia, Bacino Orseolo, and Piazzale Roma.
These gondola stations are located in the best-known areas of the city and are the ones with the most gondolas. Other less frequented stations are Danieli, Dogana, Santa Maria del Giglio, Trinità, Santa Sofia, and San Tomà.
Private or Shared Gondola Tour in Venice? Here’s How to Save Some Money
According to the official rules, up to 5 people can ride a gondola. But of course, you can book a gondola ride in Venice for two.
A private ride for two is obviously more expensive, but it allows you to agree with the gondolier on a personalized tour in terms of route and duration.
Another possible option if you don’t want to book a private tour is to share the gondola ride with other people.
This option is great if you want to ride through Venice’s canals on a budget. Sharing a gondola tour will save you money since you will be splitting the cost with other people.
But Venice offers other alternatives, like the traghetto gondola, also known as the gondola parada. This ancient service, dating back to when there were far fewer bridges, is making a comeback.
Basically, a gondola parada is a larger gondola that serves as a passenger boat and crosses the main canal in a few minutes.
It may be a less iconic experience, but at least you get to ride a gondola in Venice for just €2.
How to Get to Venice
So, as you can see, there are ways to enjoy and book a gondola ride in Venice without breaking the bank.
Venice is home to manyartistic and architectural wonders ready to be discovered by everyone, even on a budget.
Visiting Venice and its gems has never been easier, thanks to Venezia Lines ferries from Croatia.
Our ferries connect Venice with many coastal cities in Croatia, allowing you to easily get there and enjoy its magic.
Plus, you have plenty of options to choose from. For example, you can opt for a family or a group package or join the VIP Club to get exclusive benefits.