Your Guide to the Famous Gondolas of Venice, Italy

There is nothing quite as romantic as an evening ride through narrow, historic canals on a gondola in Venice, Italy. Soak in the rich cultural history of this beautiful city aboard an iconic vessel. There are several factors to consider when it comes to making the most of your gondola ride. Price, location, and time of day are important to be mindful of before embarking on your scenic adventure. Read on to learn more about the cultural heritage, what to expect, and where to get the best gondola experience. Then, view our complimentary Travel Guide for insightful local advice on where to go and what to do on your European holiday! 

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Everything You Need to Know About Venice, Italy, Gondola Rides

A Brief History of Venetian Gondolas 

Venetians have rowed through the city’s canals for centuries. It served as the primary source of transportation in Venice. Gondoliers maneuver these flat-bottomed rowing boats using only one oar. It wasn’t until the Baroque period that they began to take on their elegant, ornate forms. Today, families still pass down the tradition of hand-crafting these wooden vessels in special workshops called squeri

What to Expect From a Gondola Ride

Stroll along the canals and search for a gondola that piques your interest. They are all uniquely adorned with ornate carving and gilding. Once you find the right one, get comfortable! The seats are cozy, and there are often blankets. The gondolier will likely have a striped shirt and sun. They may also speak English, French, or German. There is often an expectation that the gondolier will sing. While it is not impossible, it’s best to go into the ride expecting to sit back, relax, and take in the beautiful scenery. 

The Best Canals for the Ultimate Experience 

While the Grand Canal and St. Mark’s Square are the most popular places to find gondola stations in Venice, they are also the most crowded. Instead, consider seeking out a ride at the San Polo and Campo San Barnaba areas, or the Jewish Ghetto. This will allow for a quieter experience exploring the different neighborhoods in Venice. 

Stay in Commendable Rentals’ Property for an Authentic Venetian Experience You Will Remember for  Lifetime

Crossing historic canals on a gondola in Venice, Italy, is one of many memorable experiences you can count on during your holiday to Europe. To ensure that your dream vacation becomes a reality, stay with Commendable Rentals. Our reliably authentic Venetian properties capture the enchanting essence of this historic gem of a destination. Choose between elegant, frescoed palazzos and sleek, modern spaces. Each of our properties boasts an ideal location near all the best things to do in the city. Additionally, we aim to go above and beyond to make your getaway one that you’ll remember for a lifetime. 

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10 of the Best Hidden Gems in Rome to Get You off the Beaten Path

Maybe you’d like to avoid the crowds of Rome’s most famous attractions. Perhaps you consider your interests to be more esoteric than those of most people. Regardless, we have the local insight to point you in the direction of some of the best hidden gems in Rome! Venture off the beaten path and see ancient Roman ruins, visually striking masterworks, and truly one-of-a-kind sights. Read on to learn more. Then, take a look at our Travel Guide for additional suggestions to include in your European holiday itinerary! 

10 of Our Favorite Hidden Gems in Rome 

1. Cross the Tiber River to Explore the Trastevere Neighborhood

While the neighborhood has grown in popularity, there is still Roman authenticity you can experience. From stunning jewel box churches and local food to bustling piazzas and charming, ivy-adorned streets, Trastevere is home to an array of unique things to do. 

2. Stop to Smell the Flowers at the Rome’s Rose Garden in May and June  

Open to the public from April 21st through June, the Roseto Comunale contains over 1,100 varieties of roses and is a sight to behold. 

3. Tour Domus Aurea, Emperor Nero’s “Golden House” 

Architecture enthusiasts will be amazed at the Domus Aurea. This outstanding structure dates back to 64AD. Touring this “Golden House” event helps to fund its restoration. 

4. Admire the Basilica of St. Mary of the Angels and the Martyrs 

While it may be seemingly unspectacular on the outside, the Basilica of St. Mary of the Angels and the Martyrs’ interior is truly breathtaking to witness. This structure was built inside the frigidarium of the Baths of Diocletian in the Piazza della Repubblica. 

5. Stand in Awe of the Magnificent Galleria Sciarra

Opulence and elegance abound at this hidden Art Nouveau courtyard. The Galleria Sciarra features brightly colored frescoes that illuminate under brilliant beams of sunshine that pour through the glass ceiling.  

6. Explore the Baths of Caracalla 

Step onto beautiful mosaic floors of ancient Roman ruins that have stood the test of time since the early 200s. The Baths of Caracalla are often overlooked, making this hidden gem the perfect place to avoid the crowds. 

7. Learn About British Romantic Poets at the Keats–Shelley House 

This museum honors the English Romantic poets with a variety of unique treasures. It is most recognized for being John Keats’ home. You can even see his preserved bedroom! 

8. See Stunning Raphael Frescoes at the Quiet Villa Farnesina

If the crowds at the Vatican keep you from seeing some of Raphael’s works, consider visiting the Villa Farnesina instead. Here you can admire some of his works in a peaceful setting. 

9. Get Inspired by Impressive Works at the Doria Pamphilj Gallery

The Palazzo Doria Pamphilj houses an impressive gallery that features the works of artists such as Raphael, Tiziano, Caravaggio, Brueghel the Elder, Velazquez, and Bernini. 

10. Brave the Capuchin Crypt Beneath the Church of  Santa Maria della Concezione dei Cappuccini

For fans of “dark tourism,” the Capuchin Crypt is easily one of the most unusual places to visit in Rome. This attraction is adorned with the bones of over 4,000 friars and is not for the faint of heart!

Additional Rome Travel Resources

When Is the Best Time to Visit Rome to Minimize Crowds?

4 Historical Places in Rome You Need to Visit

Easter in Rome: What You Need to Know

Make the Most of Your Roman Getaway When You Stay With Commendable Rentals 

In between adventures exploring the best hidden gems in Rome, return to stunning vacation rental! Our properties range from luxurious penthouse apartments with private gardens to charming apartments situated inside a gorgeous 17-century building. Our staff at Commendable Rentals goes above and beyond to ensure that your stay is one that you will remember for a lifetime. What are you waiting for? 

Make Your Dream Vacation a Reality! 

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