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Venice > Sightseeing > Street signs

Venice Street Signs in Venetian Dialect

Venice building with yellow street sigh

ABOVE: A yellow street sign (upper right corner) points the way to the railroad station and Piazzale Roma.

Venice has plenty of street signs (mostly painted or mounted on the sides of buildings), but they can be confusing if you're looking for a address from a guidebook or a street name on a map. The reason for the confusion is simple:

Most signs are in Venetian dialect, which can be slightly, moderately, or radically different from standard Italian. For example, the campo and church of "Giovanni e Paolo" become "Zanipolo" in Venetian dialect. Other spellings vary by only a letter or two and aren't likely to cause worry.

Our advice:

  • Use common sense: If the map suggests that you're in the right place and the street sign looks reasonably accurate, the odds are good that you aren't lost.

  • Be prepared for surprises: A saint's name might be given to a campo, a calle larga, and a fondamenta, and each variant could be in a different neighborhood. Have a rough idea of where you're going, and you'll be less likely to encounter confusion.

Examples of Venetian dialect vs. Italian spellings:

Marzaria S. Zulian sign Venetian Dialect:
"Marzaria San Zulian"

Standard Italian:
"Merceria di San Giuliano"


Sestier de S. Crose sign Venetian Dialect:
"Sestier de Santa Crose"

Standard Italian:
"Sestiere di Santa Croce"


Campo de Gheto Novo and Ponte de Gheto Novo sign Venetian Dialect:
"Campo de Gheto Novo"

Standard Italian:
"Campo di Ghetto Nuovo"


Campiello de la Madonna sign Venetian Dialect:
"Campiello de la Madonna"

Standard Italian:
"Campiello della Madonna"


Salizada dei Spechieri sign Venetian Dialect:
"Salizada dei Spechieri"

Standard Italian:
"Salizzada dei Specchieri"

Also see:
Walking in Venice: Finding Your Way With Signs and Maps

About the author:

Durant Imboden photo.Durant Imboden has written about Venice, Italy since 1996. He covered Venice and European travel at for 4-1/2 years before launching Europe for Visitors (including Venice for Visitors) with Cheryl Imboden in 2001.

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