Poetic spots in a city made for an artist’s inspiration.Read More →
In Venice, there are 417 bridges and 72 of those are privately owned.
Italy is on Central European Time (CET) during most of the year, and Central European Summer Time (CET+1) during daylight savings time/the summer.
Italy is part of the Schengen Agreement, meaning that entering Italy from most other parts of the EU is pretty easy. There are no border checkpoints or customs. Document and customs checks remain standard if arriving from (or departing to) a non-Schengen country.
If you are an EU or Swiss citizen, you can travel to Italy with your national identity card alone. All other nationalities need a valid passport. Visas are not generally required if you are staying less than 90 days (or at all for EU citizens), for citizens of countries including, Australia, Canada, Israel, Japan, New Zealand, Switzerland and the USA.
If you are entering Italy for more than 90 days or for any reason other than tourism (such as study or work) you may need a specific visa. See vistoperitalia.esteri.it or contact an Italian consulate for details.
Ensure your passport is valid for at least six months beyond your departure date from Italy.
Although Venice is globally known as a romantic destination specifically for honeymooners, it’s also a great option for solo travelers thanks to its safety. You can even feel at ease speaking to strangers. It’s highly recommended that you spend a few days there so you can be well acquainted with the city.
The only worry you may have is to watch out for pickpockets in congested and touristic areas, just like in most Italian cities. If you stick around the canals and campos (city square), you can feel safe to walk around alone.
Florence is simply one of those places that’s lovely to visit pretty much all year round. Although July and August are extremely hot, meanwhile November through March can be on the colder side. The most popular months span from May through October. But if you REALLY want to save some cash, don’t go during summer time when prices are high. Spring and autumn are the best time for less tourists and cheaper accommodations.
Italian is the main language of Italy, although many Italians also understand and speak English well, especially in restaurants, shops, and hotels in large cities. Here are a few words to get you through a trip.
Hello/Goodbye = Ciao (informal)
Good morning/Hello = Buongiorno
Good afternoon/Good evening = Buonasera
Goodbye = Arriverderci
Goodnight = Buonanotte
Yes = Sì
No = No
Please = Per favore
Thank you = Grazie (grah-tsee-eh)
You’re welcome = Prego
I’m sorry = Mi dispiace
Excuse me/I’m sorry = Scusa
Do you speak English? = Parla inglese?
I don’t speak Italian = Non parlo italiano
Venice is filled with tourists, and locals have been complaining for years. So here are some tips to keep those frowns away:
- When walking, try to walk on the right. Since the alleys are so narrow and often congested with tourists, remember to always stay on the right side of the road and stick to a single file to allow other pedestrians freely pass by you. Keep in mind there are locals who are also busy carrying on with their daily routines by taking the same routes.
- Try not to block the bridges. As you’ll probably be admiring the view, try not to cause a road block. Eating your meals on the bridge is definitely a no-no. In some areas in the city, public picnic is strictly banned, so if you’re hungry, stick to cafes or sit by the sea on a bench rather than on bridges.
- When riding the gondola or ferries, don’t panic and stay cool. It may get crowded, but simply say “permesso” to excuse yourself.
Italy uses Euros (€) as their currency. You’ll be able to find ATMs everywhere throughout the country. Most places will accept credit cards but prefer you pay with cash. They also don’t like splitting the bill with multiple cards so keep that in mind if you’re with a group.
Tipping! It’s not necessary, as many places have a service charge already included in the bill.
Like the rest of Europe, Italy uses one of the two European standard electrical socket types, with voltage of 220-240 Volts (U.S./Canada are 110-120 Volts.) Your converter should look like this:
It’s safe to drink tap water in Venice. You’ll see that in most squares, there are fountains where you can refill your water bottles. Although other travelers have complained the taste of Italian water can lead to stomach cramps. If you have a sensitive condition, it’s better to buy bottled water.
According to Italian Insider, it’s illegal to swim in Venice’s busy waterways. For those who want to “cool off” by swimming in Venice’s canals, it comes with a heavy fine of 450 euros.
Wi-Fi is available in most places in Venice. Most restaurants, bars, cafes and hotels will have Wi-Fi. The Venice Marco Polo Airport also provide free Wi-Fi.
There are two types of taxis in Venice:
Water taxis – More expensive but very convenient. A ride from the airport can go as high as 100+ euros, but if you can share it with other passengers, then cost per person won’t be as bad.
Land taxis – The Piazzale Roma is as close to historic center as taxis can go, since cars aren’t allowed in most historic parts of Venice. From Piazzale Roma, you’ll need to reach to your hotel by water bus (vaporetto) or by foot. During your trip, you’ll be walking most of the time.
There isn’t Uber but you can try appTaxi.
The culture capital of Italy may not have a huge gay nightlife scene like Milan, but the LGBTQ community is quite strong in Florence. Here are some events to look out for:
Florence Queer Festival – the international film and arts fest is annually held in October. There are exhibitions, film showings, tons of events and parties to check out. Altri Passi is an informal group in the LGBTQ community who tour together to discover local culture, nature, food, and much more. Toscana Pride happens every year in June and July that invites 10,000 participants.