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Lido Beaches and Recreation

From: Lido di Venezia (Venice Lido)

Lifeguard on Lido public beach

ABOVE: A lifeguard keeps watch over the Lido's public beach on a quiet morning in May.

Beaches

Beaches (spiagge) run the length of the Lido's Adriatic side, from the sand dunes behind San Nicolò on the north to the Bagni Alberoni and its adjacent nature area on the south. The most popular beach areas are in the heavily-populated sections of the island, which run from just above the Gran Viale Santa Maria Santa Elisabetta to the Hotel Excelsior. For an overview of the Lido's beaches, see our Lido satellite map.

Beach huts on the Lido di VeneziaThe sand along the water is open to everyone, but in many areas, private beach clubs limit access from the Lido's waterfront boulevards. These beach clubs--which are mostly open from June through August--rent huts, umbrellas, deck chairs, etc. by the day, week, month, or season. (In many cases, hotel guests are given access to designated clubs or offered discounts on daily memberships.) Examples of such clubs include Venezia Spiagge, SAB (Statilimenti Attività Balneari), and Pachuka Beach (known for its restaurant and nightclub).

Blue Moon beach sign, Lido di VeneziaIf you'd prefer to avoid rental fees and don't mind crowds, head for the public beach ("Blue Moon") at the end of the Gran Viale Santa Maria Elisabetta. The spiaggia has showers, toilets, a restaurant, and a bar. From the public beach, you can walk north or south along the water, wandering out on jetties and watching ships at sea along the way.

For more information (and more pictures), see our Lido photos: Beaches page.

Bicycling

Lido on Bike signThanks to its flat topography and relatively light car traffic, the Lido is a great place for bicycling--whether you want to tool around down with the family on a quadracycle or venture south along the Murazzi, the 18th Century stone seawalls that run almost to the resort of Alberoni.

Several shops rent bicycles on the Lido, as do many hotels. Biciclette Gardin is at the Piazzale Santa Maria Elizabetta, slightly north of the Lido S.M.E. waterbus station, while Lido on Bike and Venice Bike Rental are on the Gran Viale Santa Maria Elisabetta, the Lido's main shopping street.

The city of Venice has a Bike Sharing program with two stations on the Lido (one by the waterbus station, the other next to the Film Festival cinema), but it's geared more to residents than to tourists.

Golf

The Circolo Golf Venice, or Venice Golf Club, is located in Alberoni, at the southern end of the Lido. The 18-hole course was designed by a Scottish golf architect in 1928. (The club's official site, www.circologolfvenezia.it, wasn't working the last time we checked, but give it a try. You might also want to watch a YouTube video about the golf course.)

Helicopter tours

Heliair offers trips of six minutes to half an hour from the Lido's Nicelli Airport. Prices aren't cheap, but the views of Venice and the Lagoon are breathtaking. (To watch tour videos, see our Venice Travel Blog post titled "Venice from the air: Heliair helicopter tours.")

Museums, monuments, and architecture

The Palazzo del Podesta Malamocco has a permanent exhibition of archæological finds in the Venice area. You'll need an appointment to visit the palace, which is on the main road south toward Alberoni. (If you're lucky, you may be able to coordinate your visit with a school trip.)

Closer to the center of the Lido, the Ancient Jewish Cemetery is of historical interest. Click here for an archived New York Times story about the ancient cemetery, and e-mail [email protected] to inquire about guided tours. (Tour hours vary, and the cemetery is closed on Saturdays, Jewish holidays, December 25th, January 1st, and May 1st.)

Tempio Votivo, Lido di VeneziaJust north of the Lido S.M.E. waterbus station is the Lido War Memorial, locally known as the Tempio Votivo. You'll see the domed structure (which resembles a Bahá'i House of Worship)  as you approach the Lido on the ACTV vaporetto or the Alilaguna airport boat.

Finally, the City of Venice has published an online catalog and guide titled The Architecture of the Lido: From Art Nouveau to the '50s. (Our link will take you to a Google-translated English version of the Italian original, which identifies, categorizes, and describes more than 250 properties on the Lido di Venezia.)

More advice (in book form):

For more things to see and do on the Lido di Venezia, buy The Venice Lido, by Robin Saikia. The book, published by Blue Guides, is available as a paperback or an e-book. (The author is a British travel writer and historian.)

Next page: Lido photos: Transportation


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