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Where to Stay in Venice and Mestre

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Alloggi Locanda Marinella

ABOVE: The Alloggi Locanda Marinella is a delightful small hotel on a quiet street near the Piazzale Roma. (We splurged on a superior double with private patio.)

The best hotel and apartment locations

Distances in Venice are short, so--in theory--location shouldn't be as crucial as it might be in a city like Rome or Milan. In practice, location does matter, especially if you're traveling with heavy luggage and don't want to spend a lot of time and money on transportation.

 Here are a few points to keep in mind:

photoThe area around the Piazza San Marco has an express vaporetto stop, and you'll disembark here if you come by boat from the airport. But it's also the most popular tourist area in Venice, with higher prices and bigger crowds than other sestieri or neighborhoods.

photoHotels near the Piazzale Roma and the railway station are convenient for train travelers, although the pedestrian routes between this area and San Marco can be jammed with day-trippers in the summer and on holiday weekends.

photoDorsoduro and San Polo, on the less touristed side of the Grand Canal, are good bets during high season. Cannaregio also has a neighborhood feel once you get away from the busiest streets. Closer to San Marco, the Castello district has some quiet areas not far from the main tourist attractions.

photoThe Lido, an island that separates the Venetian lagoon from the Adriatic Sea, is popular in summer--especially with well-heeled beach buffs and golfers who can afford the tabs at classic resort hotels like the Excelsior Palace. From the Lido Santa Maria Elisabetta vaporetto stop at one end of the island's main street, public water buses offer frequent service to the Piazza San Marco and other locations in Venice's historic center.

Hotels for early-morning flight departures

photoIf you're leaving Marco Polo Airport before 10 a.m. or so, see airport hotels and ground transportation for travelers with early flights. (Ryanair and Transavia passengers with early departures should consider a hotel in Treviso, near Treviso Airport.)

Hotels for cruise passengers

Hotel Santa Chiara - Piazzale RomaWhen arriving or departing on a cruise ship, your best bet is a hotel near the Venice Cruise Terminal unless your cruise line is handling luggage transfers. (For more advice on cruising from Venice--including getting to or from your ship--see our Venice for Cruisers index.)

Staying in Mestre, on the mainland

Finally, you can save quite a bit of money by staying on the Venetian mainland. Mestre, Venice's modern suburb, is especially convenient if you have a car and don't want to pay Venice's high parking rates. For hotel recommendations, see our Mestre (Mainland) Hotels page.

  • Note: We recommend booking a room in Venice's historic center if you can. During high season and on weekends, the tourist population shrinks dramatically after the daytrippers have gone home. This makes late evening and early morning the best times to enjoy Venice without the crowds.

When to book

The typical Venetian hotel is a former casa or palazzo with a limited number of rooms. This fact, combined with the great popularity of Venice, means that room shortages can occur at any time from spring through fall.

Our best advice is "Book ahead." If you do show up in Venice without a confirmed room, try the hotel reservations office in the train station, the parking garage at the Piazzale Roma, or the Venice Autostrada terminus on the mainland. But be prepared to stand in a long line, and the available hotels may be inconvenient to reach (especially with luggage).

Where to find hotel listings

For hotel listings, see "More hotel recommendations by area" below, explore our interactive Venice Hotel Maps, or visit our quick-loading and easy-to-use "How Many Bridges to Cross?" Hotel Listings.

Next page: Alternatives to hotels


In this article:

Quick hotel tools:
More hotel recommendations by area:

Other places to stay:

Also see:
Hotels and ground transportation for travelers with early-morning flights
Accessible hotels in Venice

Hotel reviews:

 


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