Venice, Brenta Canal, Grand Canal, Murano
Dates are flexible and customizable for private departures.
Venice is a city of adventure with a history that speaks to maritime might and the adventures of Marco Polo. Embrace labyrinthine streets and palatial architecture on a tour custom tailored for the family. Enjoy the view from a private tower after traversing a dense garden maze. Craft specialized Venetian masks under the guidance of a master craftsperson. The kids explore Venice on treasure hunts as you bask in the beauty of gilded frescoes and the opulent past of the Republic. When the family...
Venice – A Family in Splendor
Venice is an assortment of hundreds of islands connected by bridges with boats meandering around the canals with ease. Your flight lands at Marco Polo International Airport, where your private transfer awaits the family’s arrival. You have tempted the kids with images of palaces and knights, remarkable naval battles and captivating history. The image of the city comes to you from the shores of the lagoon. The family boards a private vaporetto (ship) with a skipper ready to guide you to the hotel in the heart of the Venice.
The kids point out the gondolas drifting down the narrow canals. You notice the charming cafes lining the cobbled walkways. The vaporetto travels beneath arching bridges and alongside marbled facades, bringing you to the private dock of your hotel, situated in what was once a luxurious palace. The opulence of the palatial structure remains, filling the lobby with period furniture accentuated with modern amenities. After the family settles in, your guide meets you in the lobby, eager to lead you on an introductory tour of the maze-like streets.
Your guide gives the kids the challenge of lion hunting, which means picking out each lion, and winged lions filling the city. The animal is the symbol of St. Mark; it also became the symbol of the city in the 9th century AD. The kids go one step further on their scavenger hunt, connoting whether the book in the paw of the winged lions is closed or open, signifying when the Republic was either at peace or war respectively.
Venice – Secrets of the Republic
In the morning, the marbled frame of the Rialto Bridge reflects in the water below. Shops flank the sides of the historic structure, the base of which dates back to the 16th century. The edifice was the only bridge crossing the Grand Canal until the mid-1800s. After breakfast, your guide meets the family once again in the lobby of the hotel. The kids are excited to explore the secrets of the Doge’s Palaces, wondering if they’ll find hidden passages or forgotten treasures. You walk along the cobbled roads leading first to a small piazza beside St. Mark’s Square.
The kids continue to point out lions they had missed the previous day. The aroma of rich espresso travels with you along the streets emanating from the bustling cafes. The brilliant architecture of St. Mark’s Square captivates you with the bulbous spires of the basilica reaching a height of more than 355 feet. The gilded exterior shimmers in the sunlight, adorned with frescoes depicting biblical tales. The Gothic exterior of the Doge’s Palace has a double arcade of slender Istrian marble columns. The upper levels of the façade contain rosy Verona marble.
The delicate design appears like latticework beneath the spires. The secret tour takes the family into the secret passageways and prison chambers beyond the normal lavish apartments and stairwells of the palace. The Consiglio dei Dieci, also known as the Council of Ten, was a secret state court involved in the public and private life of the city. The chamber in which the committee met contains elegant wood paneling, and paintings depicting the god Jupiter hurling thunderbolts, along with an image of the goddess Juno offering a crown to the Ducal of Venice.
Venice – Artwork for the Family to Enjoy
In the cool air of the morning, the scent of hot chocolate accompanies the rich espresso in the cafes. Bakeries fill their windows with fresh goods straight from the oven, creating mouthwatering artistic displays. Venice is a city filled with art, from the architecture to the frescoes inside the museums, churches, and palaces. After breakfast, you step aboard a private vaporetto (ship) at the hotel dock for an island tour of the Venetian Lagoon, beginning with the enchanting, colorful homes of Burano.
The brightly painted facades glow against the cobalt water of the lagoon. The windowsills hold flowerpots brimming with gorgeous blossoming hydrangeas. Narrow canals crisscross the island in imitation of the lattice lacework for which the women of the island are known. Fishermen return from the sea with their daily catches; the boats are painted as colorfully as the houses. Old women continue the tradition of stitching patterns together while their husbands scour the sea.
The women specialize elegant tablecloths. The shop La Perla on the main street showcases handmade produces, from doilies to baby booties, with the aroma of fish being cooked on an open grill drifting out of the nearby restaurants. Continue to the island of Murano, famous for its historic and masterful glassblowing. The backstreets of the island contain the majesty for which the family searches, with rosy facades and cobblestone lanes connected byway of step bridges. The 19th-century clock tower casts a shadow over St. Stephen’s Square, drawing your eye first upwards, before noticing the blue abstract glass sculpture at the heart of the piazza resembling an enlarged sea anemone.
Venice – A Family Cruise of Priceless Villas
At breakfast, the kids delight at the fresh brioche and freshly squeezed orange juice. You sip a frothy cappuccino indulging in its refreshing bittersweet flavor. The details of your hotel make the family feel as though you have become Venetian royalty since your arrival in the city. After your meal, you have a private transfer to Padua where the canal cruise begins. The city’s narrow streets and collection of Renaissance and Byzantine grandeur foreshadow the opulent beauty of the cruise to come. The family boards the boat on the Brenta Canal, a waterway once devoted to the villas of wealthy Venetian families of the 15th to the 19th centuries.
Villages have grown along the canal over time. However, the lavish structures of the once noble families remain in the open, framing the waterway leading back to the Venetian lagoon. The kids enjoy the ease of the cruise, along with the beauty running alongside the canal. The scent of freshly-cut grass and refreshing sea fill the air. Willows and chestnut trees shade the walkways and portions of the banks. Disembark the boat at Villa Foscari, an example of the 18th-century rococo style. The first floor contains slender balconies, and the reception hall exhibits opulent 18th-century frescoes accentuated by stucco motifs. The bright colors and stunning encompassing balcony in the entryway offers the perfect glimpse into the life of the Venetian noble family.
Venice – An Exploration of Labyrinths
Today the family returns to the edge of the Brenta Canal to visit the charming town of Stra. The grandeur of the previous day’s villas comes to life once more. The kids remember the beauty of the artwork and the fun of cruising down the waterway en route back to Venice. You venture to Villa Pisani, a structure erected in the 18th century to celebrate the 114th ruler of Venice, the Pisani Doge. In keeping with the theme the palace was erected with 114 rooms, creating an imposing and formal atmosphere unique to the villas along the canal, with the intent of impressing visitors from around the world. In the ballroom, the kids marvel at the trompe l’oeil painting. The ceiling depicts the Pisani family reclining on pink clouds with a background of clear sky.
The style of painting turns the fresco three-dimensional, making the kids wonder where the figures begin and the sky end in the painting. The gardens encompass over 27 acres and contain a stunning maze flanked by wisteria-covered passageways. A turret rises out of the heart of the maze. The kids enter the grounds eager to get lost in the hedges and find their way out again. The scent of citrus emanates from the orangery. The hedges are tall and dense winding along more than ten concentric rings. When the family reaches the center, you can climb the double-spiral staircase in the tower to watch others attempt to traverse the labyrinth.
Venice – The Inspiring Shores of the Canal
The shores of Lido have beckoned to visitors from around Europe and the Western World after becoming one of the first beach resorts on the continent. The cool water of the Adriatic Sea laps against the white sand making it feel like the grandeur of historic Venice is worlds away. Grand hotels with art nouveau style line the shore. In summer, striped umbrellas shade visitors from the sun as people sip sweet cocktails with their toes dug into the sane. Seashells glint at the edge of the water when the tide sweeps back out. People ride bicycles along the footpaths and build castles out of the damp sand.
The neighborhood contains a distinct atmosphere of historic grandeur. In the afternoon, you return to the heart of the historic city to a local store specializing in crafting personalized Venetian masks. The store is one of the oldest mask craft shops in the city and prides themselves on respecting the tradition while celebrating innovation. Your instructor offers a quick history of the masks, explaining the tradition began more than eight centuries ago. With each mask unique in decoration the family eagerly begins working on their own expression of the Venetian custom, adding their personal touch to either the Bautta or Moretta model of the mask.
Venice – Hunting for Venetian Treasure
Venice is as famous for its quirks and eccentricities as for its marbled monuments and gilded churches. At breakfast, the kids want to show off their masks once more, asking to wear their creations around the city. After the meal, your guide meets you at the hotel happy to lead you on a half-day treasure hunt of the hidden cultural and historical sites of the city. You begin in search of a grocery store on a boat. The guide looks optimistic the family will find one, even if you aren’t sure. In the water at Campo San Barnaba, near the Ponte dei Pugni , the kids point out a grocer selling fresh produce from his boat. Baskets fill with verdant lettuce and glowing yellow lemons.
Gondoliers sing in the distance, adding a special soundtrack to the family’s treasure hunt. The exploration continues near lunchtime with a food tour of the best gelato in Venice. The kids don’t try to hide their excitement as you walk into the first gelateria near Piazza San Marco. The store fills with the aroma of cream and caramel. The fresh ingredients provide a richer flavor to the gelato, from strawberries to white chocolate, and even coconut. The kids try one flavor each before moving on to another shop, this one known for its stunning view of the Grand Canal and its waffle cookie topping.
Venice – Knowing a Good Time
At breakfast, the kids continue to wear their masks. Over cups of hot chocolate they share their favorite moments of the trip, from wandering through the prisons of the Doge’s Palace to three-dimensional images of the villas along the Brenta Canal. You tell them you loved the mazes in the gardens, which immediately causes the kids to change their answers. The city returns to bustling life with gondoliers paddling past the small canal to the back of the hotel. You think about the remarkable bronze horses adorning the balcony of St. Mark’s Basilica and perhaps want to change your answer too. Like the kids, you can’t decide what your favorite part about your time in Venice, except for that the entire family had an unforgettable time. After breakfast, your private transfer meets the family on the hotel’s dock and escorts you to Marco Polo Airport for your flight home.
- Enjoy a delicious gelato tour of Venice during a private treasure hunt that takes you around the cobbled streets of the city
- Wander along the historic canals of Venice during a private family tour of the rich architecture and churches sure to inspire you and the kids
- Embrace a city-wide scavenger hunt that takes you into the depths of the Doge’s Palace looking for particular images of the Venetian Republic
- Craft personalized Venetian masks under the guidance of a traditional mask maker
- Enjoy the opportunity to meander through the labyrinth of a stunning villa garden
- Relish the unique trompe l’oeil frescoes decorating the villas along the Brenta Canal offering three-dimensional images of historic Venetian figures
The marvels of Venice derive from images of gondolas and bulbous church domes, arching bridges, and spectacular glass figures. Your 8-day Venice tour brings history to life for the entire family, turning the charms of Venice and the grandeur of the Republic interactive. You arrive at Marco Polo International Airport where your private transfer meets the family. Your hotel exhibits an opulence of a palatial past in both furniture and gallery trimmings. Your guide meets you at the hotel and whisks the family away on an introductory tour of the city on the lagoon, pointing out the stunning architecture while asking the family to keep an eye out for different types of lions, using the variety of the Venetian character to explain the history of the city.
The next day, you have a half-day guided tour of St. Mark’s Square. The secret galleries and compartments of the Doge’s Palace keep the family’s attention, along with the gilded interior of the basilica. You have the remainder of the day at your leisure to enjoy the streets of Venice. Next, the family travels along the Venetian lagoon to visit the islands, spending most of your time on the walkways of Burano and Murano. Enjoy a sensational glassblowing demonstration on the latter island, which offers a brief history of the rise of Venice’s artists and glass trade. Travel to Padua for a brief visit to the quiet, beautiful city before boarding a boat to cruise the Brenta Canal. Visit a collection of noble villas as you travel east along the historic waterway returning you the lagoon.
Explore the Pisani Villa for artistic opulence and a sensational garden maze. In the afternoon, the family can relax with a picnic in the stunning Giardini Publicci. Bask on the beaches of Lido to enjoy the soft sand, sunlight, and beautiful architecture before partaking in a private mask making class offered in a celebrated artisan craft shop. Next, the family partakes in a treasure hunt around Venice, taking you along the cobbled streets and maze-like design of the city to indulge in its true culture. The hunt continues with a tour of the best gelaterias in Venice, which delights both you and the kids. On your final day, your private transfer meets the family at the hotel and escorts you to Marco Polo Airport for your flight home.
$2,195 per person (excluding international flights)
- In-country transportation
- Some or all activities and tours
- Expert trip planning
- 24x7 support during your trip
Your final trip cost will vary based on your selected accommodations, activities, meals, and other trip elements that you opt to include.
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