Lido Restaurants and Food
The Lido isn't a mecca for gourmets (neither is Venice, for that matter), but the island has plenty of restaurants where you can enjoy a pleasant meal--often for less than you'd pay in Venice's historic center. Menus usually feature Venetian and Italian cuisine (see our Dining in the Veneto article), and many restaurants also serve individual pizzas.
If you're staying in the center of the Lido, you'll find a good assortment of restaurants on the island's main business street, the Gran Viale Santa Maria Elisabetta. (For an example, see the photo at the top of this page.) Just walk up the street, read the menus, and choose any restaurant that strikes your fancy and has an empty table.
Our own favorite spot on the Gran Viale is the, a garden restaurant that attracts a nice mixture of locals and tourists.
Prices are reasonable, the setting is reminiscent of Copenhagen's Tivoli, and kids can play under the blossoming trees while their parents relax over dinner. Read Tripadvisor's reviews, and use these two photos to whet your appetite:
One local favorite is Bar Trento, a traditional family-owned osteria on Via Sandro Gallo (south of the center, on the main road to Alberoni). This is the place to try baccalà (salt cod), cuttlefish, and other Venetian specialties without paying big-city prices.
A few of the Lido's hotels have restaurants. For atmosphere and/or elegance, try the Hotel Excelsior, the Ausonia & Hungaria, or the waterside restaurant at the Villa Laguna (which overlooks the Venetian Lagoon and the Piazza San Marco). Several other hotels with dining rooms include the Albergo Quattro Fontane, Belvedere, and Villa Mabapa.
For nightlife, hire a taxi or pedal your rented bike to Pachuka, a beachfront restaurant, pizzeria, and bar that offers music and dancing on summer weekends. (Pachuka Beach is toward the northern end of the Lido, facing the Adriatic.)
Cafés and gelaterie
The Gran Viale Santa Maria Elisabetta, the Lido's main shopping street, is lined with cafés where you can get a drink, a snack, or a sundae. Several of the cafés have gelato counters facing the sidewalk, and you'll encounter one or two freestanding gelaterie. (Prices for a cone or cup of gelato are slightly lower outside of the central business district, on the way to the beach.)
Outdoor snack bars
The Lido has a handful of outdoor snack stands that serve drinks, sandwiches, and other edibles. They're mostly along the Lungomare Guglielmo Marconi and the Lungomare Gabriele D'Annunzio, a.k.a. the long boulevard that runs alongside the beaches on the Lido's Adriatic side.
On the beach
During the warmer months, the public beach at the end of the Gran Viale Santa Maria Elisabetta has a restaurant and bar with outdoor tables facing the water. You can take off your shoes and wiggle your toes in the sand as you eat. (Follow the signs for the Blue Moon restaurant and terrazza bar.)
The best place to buy groceries (including cold cuts, excellent rolls, fruit, drinks, and other picnic supplies) is theon the Gran Viale Santa Maria Elisabetta, slightly inland from the Lido S.M.E. waterbus station. The large, modern supermarket is open daily from 7 a.m. (8 a.m. on Sundays) to 11 p.m.
Next page: Lido shopping
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