Join A Secret Italy

Subscribe to our FREE Ezine

A Taste of Venetian Life

St Marks Piazza, the Rialto Bridge, the Bridge of Sighs and the many other well known sights of Venice are gorgeous. Yet for me, gorgeous as they are, it is the smaller canals and the lesser known parts of Venice that bring me the greatest joy.

Nothing much can beat sitting quietly alongside a tiny canal, where tourists seldom venture. I can spend hours in places like this, watching authentic Venetian life play out in front of my eyes.

The sounds, the beauty of the canals themselves, the play of light off them and the surrounding crumbling walls, it is all unforgettable. Sit an hour and the shifting sun paints a completely different picture; one canal can be a thousand different colors and hues within a day.

How sad it is then that most of the millions of visitors never discover this magical Venice. If you are visiting Venice don't make that mistake.

You'll never discover the real Venice by water bus, taxi nor even gondola; the only way is too walk. Wander away from the tourists, venture down those lanes barely wide enough for two people to pass and don't worry if you are hopelessly lost in the maze that is Venice. In fact celebrate because you are now getting to the heart and soul of Venice and savour it while you can.

Too soon you'll find your way back to the main thoroughfares and the dreamlike world will be but a memory.

Hopefully the photos on this page will set you dreaming Venetian dreams and planning your visit. If you feel a desperate need to book you can do that here and if you enjoy the photos please click the Like button below.



Venetian Life from a window

We stayed at the Old Venetian Post office this summer and loved it. This photo was taken from our room, check it out here.


Canal in Cannaregio Sestriere

A canal in the Cannaregio section (view article) of Venice.


The sad gondolier in Venice Italy

Could this be the sad Gondolier Luigi? Legend has it that Luigi's heart was broken decades ago and he can find no happiness - except when he sings. Then his spirit soars and all who hear his lovely lament feel the tears well up.


Flower Boxes along Venetian Canal
Morning light Venice

The soft early morning light of a summer's morning in Venice.


Sempione Restaurant Venice

A Gondola passes the Sempione Restaurant. A window table here offers an unforgettable view but you'll want to forget the very poor sevice and high prices.  The restaurants I recommend are these.


Sempione Restaurant, VeniceSempione Restaurant - by Modesta Tonan

Another view of the Sempione Restaurant. Just remember don't bother to eat here.


Empty Gondola

Waiting for the first passengers.


prow of a gondola
Gondola from Above

The most romantic trip of their lives! Right up there in the Italian Bucket List Top 10 (view entire list here).


Early morning view of  Venice

The best time to be out and about in Venice during the summer is really early. This photo was taken at around 7am in July. The light at that time is simply gorgeous and few tourists are around.  It's great to be able to see Venetian life get under way, watching boats delivering to shops, street cleaners in action and the market stalls laying out their wares. Even garbage collection is fascinating in Venice...see below.


Ever wondered how they collect the garbage in Venice without garbage trucks? The video shows you how.


Boats in Venice

All parking spaces occupied. Getting to find a parking spot in Venice is getting harder and harder and traffic seems to get worse each and every year...sigh!


A delightful little shop called the Casin dei Nobili which is featured on my Venetian masks page.

You only ever discover these sort of shops when you venture away from San Marco (St. Marks Square) and the Rialto Bridge area. Our shopping in Venice guide has lots of these fascinating little stores... just waiting for you!



  1. Home
  2. Photos from Venice
  3. Venetian Life

You'll Enjoy These...

  • The Italy! Mamma Mia! Blog

    The ItalyMammaMia Blog shares with you news, beautiful Italian places, recipes and travel advice. Then we've great videos and essential information for those planning to travel to Italy.

  • Which are the stores in Venice you really don't want to miss?

    In Venice, the touristy parts of the city are filled with tacky souvenir stores. If you know where to go though you'll discover stores in Venice that are truly wonderful. We'll help you to find them.

  • The Best Tours of Venice Italy

    The best tours of Venice Italy, selected by an insider. Walking tours, gondola trips, St. Mark’s Basilica and even a creepy ghost tour. We have it all!

  • Discovering the Best of Venice

    The best of Venice - 6 experiences you simply must have if you are visiting Venice. Here is the list...

  • Venice Italy - The 6 Things you HAVE to See

    There's so much to see in Venice Italy that you can become overwhelmed. Before you despair, here is the list of the 6 sights you absolutely must see and everything you need to know about them.

  • Inside Castello in Venice Italy

    Castello in Venice is a get away from the theme park feel of St. Marks Square. In some ways this is small town Italy, old ladies gossiping in the squares and kids playing in the lanes.

  • Summer in Italy

    Ever experienced a summer in Italy? Well, we've a way that you can bring the sunshine and happiness of an Italian summer home with you.

  • The Venice Italy Beach Guide

    Come summer I can only take so much history before I need a beach. That's what the Venice Italy Beach Guide is all about. Discovering the best beaches near Venice.

  • Discoveries While Lost in Venice

    Getting lost in Venice is the best way to discover the amazing secrets and soul of this city. These amazing photos were all captured down the secret alleys and forgotten canals...

  • Gorgeous Pictures of Venice Italy and Verona

    Pictures of Venice Italy features some magnificent photos of Venice, capturing the timeless beauty of the greatest city on earth.

  • The Easter in Venice Guide

    Easter in Venice is wonderful, there's a special feeling in the air and Easter is still celebrated in the traditional way. Be a part of it - click for more.

  • Shopping in Venice - The Guide

    Shopping in Venice is wonderful but you can get lost in a maze of souvenir shops. You'll avoid that if you know where to go. Discover the best places to shop - from markets to designer stores.

Please Book with Us...

Maria here, if you enjoy my site and Facebook page I'd love your support.

Simply book your next trip anywhere (not only to Italy) with the search box below or with any of the hotel links on the website.

I promise you'll get the best deal on accommodation available and the income we receive from HotelsCombined helps us to:

  • Stay independent and to keep bringing you the best of Italy.
  • Never have to accept money from hotels directly; that way we can share only those we genuinely love.

Recent Articles

  1. Are These The Most Beautiful Places in Italy?

    Are These the Most Beautiful Places in Italy? Watch the video, read the stories and then, I think, you will agree that these are indeed........

    Read More

  2. The Enchanting South of Italy

    What is it about the South of Italy that makes it so special. Well, this story will provide the answer....

    Read More

  3. Most Beautiful Villages in Italy

    Which is the most beautiful village in Italy? I will let you in on a secret: the village you are looking for is very old, it....

    Read More

  4. The Most Beautiful Places in Italy

    People often ask me which are the most beautiful places in Italy? My answer to them is this...

    Read More

  5. The 9 Most Beautiful Towns in Italy

    We would like to share a secret with you: the 9 most beautiful towns and villages in Italy.

    Read More

New! Comments

Have your say about what you just read! Leave me a comment in the box below.