Touring the Grand Canal is one of the most fun activities in Venice. It’s a unique and spectacular way to see palaces, famous hotels, and other landmarks from the water.
Venice has so much to offer and so many things to explore. If you already explored Venice on foot (10 best things to do in Venice is a good guide) and took a gondola ride, you have to experience the Grand Canal!
The Grand Canal is shaped like an inverted letter “S” going through the center of Venice. It’s about 3.8 km long. The banks of the Grand Canal are lined with many buildings of various architectural styles, including Venetian Gothic, Renaissance, Venetian Baroque, and Neoclassical architecture.
Ways to explore the Grand Canal
The best ways to explore the Grand Canal are:
- Water bus service. Water bus zigzags across the Grand Canal to bring tourists from one station to the next. You can definitely see a lot of beautiful buildings while on a water bus, but it gets crowded.
- Private Water Taxi. You can hire a private water taxi (motorboat) to go along the Grand Canal at your own pace, stopping whenever you need to enjoy the views or take a picture. You escape the crowds.
Hiring a private motorboat
You can hire a private motorboat for 1 hour for about $120 euros. It’s the same type of private motorboat that you can take from Venice airport to the hotel. The driver will take you along the Grand Canal and you will be able to see many landmarks that Venice is famous for.
Exploring the Grand Canal
We ended up hiring the private motorboat to explore the Grand Canal for 1 hour. It was the best and the most efficient way to do it.
Riding a boat in the Grand Canal is a great way to see major sights and landmarks of Venice, as well as just enjoy the unique landscape of Venice and its beautiful architecture.
You will see many beautiful buildings from the water, including hotels.
And, interesting statues: