Venice

The enchanting jewel of Italy.

Artviva: The Original and Best Walking Tours
Average Rating:   4.9
out of 5 stars
   Based on 100 Ratings.

On 2017/09/10
Kim said:
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Best Tours Ever

It was our very first trip to Italy, so my husband and I decided to book tours with ArtViva based on Rick Steves' recommendation. We took the Accademia tour with Ingrid, the Uffizi tour with Klaus, and the Original Florence tour with Tatiana. Each guide was a joy to be with. They were all both extremely knowledgeable about their subjects and were enthusiastic about presenting it. I learned so much about the amazing Florentine art and architecture. It was worth every penny. I would highly recommend ArtViva's tours to everyone!

On 2017/08/31
E said:
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Fantastic walking tour with Hilde. I would recommend it to everyone visiting Florence.

On 2017/08/03
Stephanie said:
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Fantastic Experience!

We took four tours through Artviva, three from Florence and one from Venice--all excellent! We took this tour the next day from Florence, and it was the perfect half-day to get a glimpse of the Tuscan wine country without committing an entire day (we had Florence sightseeing in the morning, wine country in the afternoon). Vito was our tour guide and driver, and he was so much fun. With the group, we got a chance to chat with folks from all over the world, and the collegiality was equally as enjoyable as the estate, wine, and olive oils we tasted when we arrived at the estate. We tried the fares, learned about the history of the estate and wine in Tuscany in general, and then took a tour of the property. Both the wine-making facilities and the private home of the Lord and Lady were open for us to tour. It was incredible! And there was even a rare piece of World War I history too (you'll have to visit to find out)! Truly, a terrific experience.

On 2017/08/03
Stephanie said:
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Fantastic Experience

We took four tours through Artviva, three from Florence and one from Venice. They were each outstanding. Your Own Cinque Terre (private tour): on our last day in Florence, we took a one day private trip to three of the five villages in Cinque Terre. Elenora was our tour guide all day, and our driver was Massimo. Both were fantastic! Elenora especially made our tour truly an experience we will never forget. She's brilliant, easy going, and full of interesting information about the cities and their histories. She even gave us an overview of the towns we traveled through on the drive to the coast. She escorted us through the train system, around the cute and winding cobblestone streets, and even to a fantastic family-owned restaurant for some seafood pasta and wine from the region. It was like having an old friend show you around her hometown. I cannot recommend this tour enough. The sights (!!), the food, the tour guide (seriously, ask for Elenora!)... all were lovely.

On 2017/08/03
Stephanie said:
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Fantastic Experience!

We took four tours through Artviva, three from Florence and one from Venice. They were each outstanding. Smart, friendly, adept tour guides led us around. And, friendly, helpful office staff helped us navigate the booking process (even before we arrived, they helped me process the booking and coordinate with meet-up locations all via email in advance). Original Florence Walk & David Tour (private tour): Corrina was our tour guide, and she was a real joy. She met us in our hotel lobby (super convenient!) and gave us a terrific tour of Florence, emphasizing its architecture, culture, history, and the daily lives of Florentines throughout the centuries. It was capped off by a visit to the David, and arriving with a tour meant that we were able to skip that incredibly LONG LINE. It was the perfect way to become acquainted with the city, and I highly recommend making this your first tour in Florence. Be

On 2017/07/18
Kathy said:
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We were touring with our 17-year-old grandson. The "Off the Beaten Path" tour with Shannon was the best we had I Italy and his favorite too. To see things that are not crowded with other tourists and so unique was a nice change from the "usual." Other tours with Artiva were excellent as well with very knowledgeable guides who seemed to be able to answer every question, even from a teenager who was anxious to know "everything." Thank you, Shannon and Artiva

On 2017/07/14
Joe Fisher said:
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Thank You, Elisabetta!

We enjoyed our wonderful day with you in Firenze. Thank you for your knowledge, humor, guidance, and keeping us in the shade! Your love of Firenze is obvious. The five Elizabeths, and the rest of us thoroughly enjoyed this unique experience and would recommend it to anyone!

On 2017/07/08
Jennifer said:
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Made Florence and Venice come alive!

My Zicasso travel agent booked tours through ArtViva for myself and my husband. We were so pleased she did! In Venice Leticia took us on the water by gondola and speed boat; this is the way to see Venice! Then Tatiana took us through St. Mark's and Doge's Palace, helping us understand the symbolism, art, and history of these places. In Florence, Rodrigo led us to better understand the David and spent time going into our questions with thoughtfulness. A 3 hour walking tour with Kate opened our eyes to what was in plain sight! We would not have understood Florence without her! Finally, the piece de resistance was Klaas and the tour of the Ufizzi Gallery. His storytelling and excitement was effervescent! We adding his tour because of the pleasure we had on the other booked tours, and I'm so glad that Klaas was our last ArtViva tour - what a beautiful ending to being in Florence! Thank you, ArtViva, for making these two cities come alive. I was so pleased with your guides, professional office staff, and joy!

On 2017/07/03
Stan Capper said:
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Great Tour

What a great tour! We were lucky to have Catherine (Cate) as our tour guide. She has such passion for the art and has such a breadth of knowledge that she expertly and clearly imparts from start to finish. I heard her and another guide remarking to each other about never having seen the museum so crowded, but she would not let the crowds keep her from putting us right in front of all the works she wanted to show us. The information she provided illuminated each piece to a stunning degree. It was perhaps the best tour of an art museum we've ever experienced. I highly recommend this tour, especially if you're lucky enough to have Catherine as your guide. I felt bad for her because the heat and crowds put us behind at the start, but she kept her poise and remained calm and got us through a remarkable tour.

On 2017/06/08
Eddie Wong said:
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Ishmael is Excellent

Ishmael led us on a fascinating food tour in and around the famed Mercado in Florence. After sampling tasty pizza dough poppers and lattes, we ventured into the indoor central market (mercado) and met several family owned businesses that sold olive oil, cheese, and other goodies. I'm not a huge foodie but enjoyed the food and learning about the process of aging olive oil and balsamic vinegar. We also had a full lunch at a local restaurant with delicious pasta and oxtail. I can't say enough superlatives about Ishmael. He is knowledgeable, personable and attentive. I would love to invite him over for dinner in San Francisco so that we can continue our conversations about food, music and art. There's so much more than food on a tour with Ishmael. Peace and blessing on to you. Ciao, Florence. We will return.

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On the northeastern cost of Italy is a cluster of 117 little isles on the Venetian Lagoon connected via around 400 bridges and interlaced with canals. Collectively this is known as Venice (or Venezia in Italian).

Mid-way through the 2nd millennium BC, this area was said to have been populated by the Veneti people. During Roman times, a series of invasions in the nearby settlements sent refugees fleeing to Venice, increasing the population significantly.

Several attacks on the city ensued throughout the next 500 years or so, leaving their own marks on the city. Still, being a somewhat geographically isolated port city saw Venice acquire increasing independence, and wealth.

Venice went on to become a great centre of trade and commerce.

By the mid-500s, Venice had a number of ports and even its own system of government. From the late 600s, the Republic of Venice was established, rendering the city greatly powerful right throughout the Middle Ages and the Renaissance.

To celebrate success in a battle in 1162, the Venice locals held great celebrations. These were then repeated on the anniversary of this important date, going on to become known as Carnivale - the Carnival of Venice. The use of costumes and masks became a way of celebrating but also, during harder times, allowing the locals to forget their woes for a period.

Venice also went on to became known as an important musical city, particularly for operas and symphonies.

Breathtaking stunning, it is no surprise that Venice has inspired a great number of artists and architects, rendering Venice an artistic and architectural hub.

Today, around 270,000 people live in Venice. The majority are on the mainland (176,000), whilst around 60,000 are in the historical city centre and approximately 30,000 on the surrounding islands. The city and its lagoon are both listed as World Heritage Sites.

It is commonly known as "La Serenissima" and the "City of Bridges", as well as for being one of the most romantic cities in the world.

On a decent visit to Venice, you'll need around three days. One day just to become marvellously lost, one day to visit the glass-making island of Murano, another to see the sites and possibly go for a gondola ride.

€ 42.00

Doge's Palace Visit

Prepare to let your imagination take flight as you follow our experts behind the scenes to explore the Doge’s Palace. See the architectural pomp and pageantry conceived by these Renaissance business tycoons on this small-group Venetian excursion.
€ 54.00

The Great Grand Canal Expedition

Discover the Grand Canal in fitting style with a luxury boat ride in the company of one of our experts and an extra small group of likeminded travellers. From sumptuous palaces to heart-stopping views and famous film locations, you’ll float through the sites of intrigue, scandal, fame and fashion.
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€ 69.00

A Gondola Adventure

Step into another world and explore the quintessential essence of ‘The Floating City’ via its favourite mode of transportation: the Gondola. Traverse the charming canals and weave through the intriguing waterways to enjoy a glimpse of the glory days from long ago.
€ 69.00

The Original Gondola Tour

For the discerning explorer we have put together a gondola experience that will introduce the city to you in a romantic and exclusive style.
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€ 15.00

Venice Airport to Piazzale Roma or Your Cruise Ship Dock

Private transfer from the Venice "Marco Polo" Airport to Piazzale Roma in the heart of Venice or to your cruise ship dock.
€ 85.00

From Venice City Centre to Florence

Private transfer from Piazzale Roma in Venice to your hotel in the Florence city centre.
Meet your driver in Piazzale Roma, near the Santa Lucia train station, to be accompanied to Florence. 
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€ 85.00

From Florence City Centre to Venice

The luxury of a driver collecting you from your accommodation in central Florence for a private transfer to Venice.
€ 26.00

The Original Venice Walk

Join our guides for an introduction to the iconic piazza and basilica of St Mark’s. Timed to give you access to the church during quiet periods, you’ll get a perspective on the city’s history that will enhance your stay.
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€ 49.00

Exclusive Highlights of Venice

Visit St Mark’s Square and the magnificent Doge’s Palace during this 2-hour adventure with your own personal guide. Get a taste of Venetian life, history and culture across the centuries during this in-depth exploration of its most wondrous sights.
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€ 62.00

A Venetian Wine Tour

Under the expert guidance of our professional Sommelier, enjoy sampling some of finest food and wine in one of the local ‘Bacari’ establishments.   
 
 
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€ 39.00

The Magnificent 'City of Masks': 2 Hours

Under the expert tutelage of our knowledgeable guides, learn to truly appreciate and understand Venice the way it deserves. Visit some of the lesser known historic sites and enjoy an in-depth look at the magnificent art and architecture that can be found around every corner. 
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€ 97.50

An Enchanting Evening: Gondola Ride and Serenade

Glide along the charming canals and waterways in style during this private gondola ride complete with serenading musical accompaniment. As the sun sets across the lagoon, you’ll relish the stunning views and enjoy the gentle breeze as it ushers in a romantic evening for two.
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€ 149.00

Glorious Venice in a Day (or Two or Three)

Take advantage of our expert personal guides for the ultimate exploration of the ‘City of Canals’. Be entertained by the stories and the history behind this magnificent world as told by your own walking-talking fountain of knowledge!
€ 118.75

Private transfer from Milan Malpensa Airport to Venice

Let yourself truly relax by reserving a private driver to collect you in Milan's Malpensa airport and accompany you to Venice.
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€ 70.00

Learn To Be a Gondolier

Learn to navigate the city’s gorgeous canals and stunning lagoon at your own speed with one of our unique rowing classes. Our great English-speaking instructor will guide you through all the techniques and skills needed to become an expert Gondolier in no time!
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€ 59.38

The Treasures of the 'Floating City': 4 hours

Immerse yourself in this in-depth exploration of Venice’s greatest pieces of art and architecture. Surround yourself in the city’s beauty and history to fully appreciate its cultural and artistic contributions to the world at large. 
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€ 20.00

The Mysteries of Magnates & Mistresses - 2 Hours

Delve into the city’s history of affluence and glamour during its glory days as Italy’s most important import and export epicentre. With great wealth, originating from the trade of exotic spices and silk, came immense power, used for both good and evil.
 
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€ 70.91

The Ultimate Venetian Experience

Explore one of the most charming and unique cities in the world while gliding around on a traditional gondola. View the beauty of this metropolis both on foot, and by water, as part of this bespoke introduction to the authentic Venice. 
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€ 31.50

Water transfer from Venice's port or railway station to Venice accommodation

A private transfer to the nearest water access to your accommodation in Venice city centre.
You are free to choose from any of the following Venice terminals for your pick-up: Train Station Santa Lucia, Stazione Marittima Pier, San Basillo Pier, Piazzale Roma and Tronchetto.
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€ 26.67

The Gondola: King of the Canals

Begin your evening with a dreamy ride down Venice's beautiful canals. Once the only mode of transportation, a gondola ride is still the best way to see this floating paradise through the eyes of the Venetians from yesteryear.
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€ 36.25

Private water transfer from Venice airport to hotel in Venice

A luxury transfer service including meet & greet assistance at airport.
Our English-speaking skipper will then accompany you to the nearest water access of your accommodation in central Venice*.
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€ 150.00

Custom Vacation Planning

Utilise our expertise by having us design that special unforgettable experience of a lifetime for you. 
Whether you wish to bike ride through the Tuscan hills, treat your family to the art cities, experience Italy's rich gourmet and wine heritage, explore your artistic side, or have a romantic honeymoon vacation, we can arrange it all.
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