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Doge's Palace
Vacation Travel Guide

This grand building was home to Venice’s rulers for centuries and is still a statement of wealth and power.

The pink marble façade of the 14th-century Doge’s Palace (Palazzo Ducale) is a striking sight on St. Mark’s Square. The arched loggias and the fortress-like peaks on top of the walls convey a sense of wealth and power to those who approach Venice by sea. Every aspect of this building was designed to impress, from the imposing décor of the Hall of the Great Council, to the luxurious apartments.

Begin your tour in the courtyard, with its towering marble loggias. Statues of Mars and Neptune overlook the open space from atop the wide, white steps of the Giant’s Staircase.

The system of elected rulers in Venice lasted from the seventh to the 18th century. As you wander through this palace, you will see that the rulers, “doges,” were surrounded by luxury. Admire the rooms containing frescoes, paintings and resplendent fireplaces. They still look as they would have in the days when Venice was the so-called Serene Republic. Cast an eye upwards; the carved wooden ceilings are works of art in their own right.

Ascend the Golden Staircase to reach the Hall of the Great Council, the largest and most impressive room. Admire Tintoretto’s massive painting Paradise, which hangs behind the throne. More paintings, frescoes and sculptures by Tintoretto and other artists adorn the walls of every room in the Institutional Chambers.

Find the prison cell where the legendary womanizer Casanova was once held. It is linked to the palace by the Bridge of Sighs. Legend has it that the bridge is so called because it is where an inmate would take his last breath with a view before his imprisonment.

The palace is open daily, with extended hours during summer. Audio guides are available to rent. For a more detailed look at the rooms, as well as a chance to skip the lines, consider booking the museum’s Secret Itineraries tour (for an extra fee). This tour also takes you to rooms that aren’t usually accessible to the public. The museum’s café offers great views back over St. Mark’s Square.

Top Hotels Close to Doge's Palace

Rosa Salva Hotel
Rosa Salva Hotel
3.5 out of 5
San Marco 951, Calle Fiubera, Venice
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Located in San Marco, this property is steps from St. Mark's Square, St. Mark's Basilica, and St Mark's Campanile. La Fenice Opera House and Rialto Bridge are ...

4.8/5Exceptional! (616 reviews)
Good location and brand new

"Cute hotel walking distance from Rialto and St Marks square. Plenty of bars and restaurants within walking distance. Room was a little small but that’s what you expect for a city hotel. Everything was new and clean."…"

Reviewed on Oct 7, 2020

Rosa Salva Hotel
Bauer Palazzo
Bauer Palazzo
5 out of 5
San Marco 1459, Venice, VE
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Located in San Marco, this luxury hotel is steps from Correr Civic Museum, Grand Canal, and St. Mark's Square. La Fenice Opera House and St. Mark's Basilica ...

4.6/5Wonderful! (987 reviews)

"Excellent hotel in a perfect location for sight seeing."…"

Reviewed on Oct 23, 2020

Bauer Palazzo
Hotel San Cassiano Ca'Favretto
Hotel San Cassiano Ca'Favretto
4 out of 5
Sestiere Di Santa Croce 2232, Venice, VE
The price is $65 per night from Feb 4 to Feb 5

Located in Santa Croce, this romantic hotel is steps from San Cassiano, Grand Canal, and Ca' d'Oro Giorgio Franchetti Gallery. Rialto Bridge and St. Mark's Basilica ...

4.3/5Excellent! (966 reviews)

"I liked the location by the Canale Grande. It would have been nice to have had more choices at breakfast."…"

Reviewed on Oct 27, 2020

Hotel San Cassiano Ca'Favretto
Lowest nightly price found within the past 24 hours based on a 1 night stay for 2 adults. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.

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Best Lodging Options Near Doge's Palace

Rosa Salva Hotel
Rosa Salva Hotel
3.5 out of 5
San Marco 951, Calle Fiubera, Venice
Rosa Salva Hotel
Bauer Palazzo
Bauer Palazzo
5 out of 5
San Marco 1459, Venice, VE
Bauer Palazzo
Hotel San Cassiano Ca'Favretto
Hotel San Cassiano Ca'Favretto
4 out of 5
Sestiere Di Santa Croce 2232, Venice, VE
The price is $65 per night from Feb 4 to Feb 5
Hotel San Cassiano Ca'Favretto
Antica Venezia
Antica Venezia
Piscina Frezzeria - San Marco 1672, Venice, VE
The price is $83 per night from Feb 21 to Feb 22
Antica Venezia
Hotel Danieli, a Luxury Collection Hotel, Venice
Hotel Danieli, a Luxury Collection Hotel, Venice
5 out of 5
Riva Degli Schiavoni, 4196, Venice, VE
The price is $374 per night from Feb 2 to Feb 3
Hotel Danieli, a Luxury Collection Hotel, Venice
H10 Palazzo Canova
H10 Palazzo Canova
4.5 out of 5
San Polo - Via Riva del Vin 744, Venice, VE
The price is $121 per night from Feb 2 to Feb 3
H10 Palazzo Canova
Hotel Abbazia
Hotel Abbazia
3 out of 5
Cannaregio, Calle Priuli Cavaletti 68, Venice, VE
The price is $72 per night from Feb 20 to Feb 21
Hotel Abbazia
Splendid Venice – Starhotels Collezione
Splendid Venice – Starhotels Collezione
4 out of 5
San Marco Mercerie 760, Venice, VE
The price is $143 per night from Jan 25 to Jan 26
Splendid Venice – Starhotels Collezione
Hotel Londra Palace
Hotel Londra Palace
5 out of 5
Riva Schiavoni 4171, Venice, VE
Hotel Londra Palace
Lowest nightly price found within the past 24 hours based on a 1 night stay for 2 adults. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.