Grand Canal

Vacation Travel Guide
Grand Canal featuring heritage architecture, a river or creek and a ferry

Venice’s famous canal winds through the city and brings you to nearly all of its world-famous attractions. Hop in a gondola or vaporetto to take it all in!

The Grand Canal is Venice’s famous S-shaped thoroughfare. On any given day you can hear the splashing of the oars of the gondolas that slowly traverse the city just as they have done for centuries. A trip in a gondola is almost unavoidable because there are very few sidewalks along the canal, and the backs of the Floating City’s buildings drop straight into the water. A more modern and faster way to see the Grand Canal, and the main tourist attractions alongside it, is by vaporetto (water bus). For a simple crossing, take a traghetto, a ferry on which you remain standing for the duration of the short trip.

You can travel the entire two-mile (four-kilometer) length of the Grand Canal by boat, passing the many fine palaces and churches that line its banks. See examples of the impressive architectural styles that give Venice its charm. Among the more than 170 landmark buildings is the Gothic palace Ca’ d’Oro, the baroque Basilica di Santa Maria della Salute and the Renaissance-style Palazzo Dario. Several agencies offer tours that will explain the history of these buildings in detail, a great way to get an overview of Venice. If you’d rather explore at your own pace, hire a private gondola and punt your way along the calm waters.

Be sure to pause at the Rialto Bridge, one of Venice’s most iconic sights. It’s the oldest of four bridges that cross the Grand Canal. The other bridges are the Ponte degli Scalzi, the Ponte dell’Accademia, and the ultra-modern, and controversial, Constitution Bridge.

Come on the first Sunday in September for the spectacular Regata Storica, when locals dressed in 16th-century costumes race decorated boats.

The Grand Canal is Venice’s “main street,” central to all that goes on in the city. It is common practice to barter with the gondoliers when arranging your canal trip.

Top Hotels Close to Grand Canal

CHC Continental, BW Premier Collection by Best Western
CHC Continental, BW Premier Collection by Best Western
4 out of 5
Lista di Spagna, Cannaregio 166, Venice, VE
The price is $73 per night from Jan 25 to Jan 26
Located in Cannaregio, this hotel is steps from Palazzo Labia and Grand Canal. Piazzale Roma and Port of Venice are also within 1 mi (2 km). Venice (XVQ-Santa ...
4.1/5 Very Good! (437 reviews)
"Good hotel"

Reviewed on Dec 26, 2021

CHC Continental, BW Premier Collection by Best Western
Hotel Rialto
Hotel Rialto
4 out of 5
San Marco 5149 Ponte Di Rialto, Venice, VE
The price is $82 per night from Feb 9 to Feb 10
Located in Venice City Center, this hotel is steps from Rialto Bridge and Grand Canal. St. Mark's Square and St. Mark's Basilica are also within 10 minutes. ...
4.2/5 Excellent! (968 reviews)
"Amazing service and location!"

Reviewed on Jan 18, 2022

Hotel Rialto
Palazzo Veneziano
Palazzo Veneziano
4.5 out of 5
Fondamenta delle Zattere 1413, Venice
The price is $112 per night from Jan 23 to Jan 24
Located in Dorsoduro, this luxury hotel is within a 10-minute walk of Zattere and Grand Canal. St. Mark's Square and Piazzale Roma are also within 1 mi (2 km). ...
4.7/5 Exceptional! (976 reviews)
"A very beautiful hotel, in a very beautiful city area, with the most friendly and helpful stuff!"

Reviewed on Dec 18, 2021

Palazzo Veneziano
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.

Plan a trip to see Grand Canal

Hotel Nani Mocenigo Palace
Hotel Canal Grande
Crowne Plaza Venice East, an IHG Hotel

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Grand Canal

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Best Lodging Options Near Grand Canal

Hotel Montecarlo
Hotel Montecarlo
3 out of 5
Calle Specchieri 463 San Marco, Venice, VE
The price is $57 per night from Feb 1 to Feb 2
Hotel Montecarlo
Hotel Rialto
Hotel Rialto
4 out of 5
San Marco 5149 Ponte Di Rialto, Venice, VE
The price is $82 per night from Feb 9 to Feb 10
Hotel Rialto
Palazzo Veneziano
Palazzo Veneziano
4.5 out of 5
Fondamenta delle Zattere 1413, Venice
The price is $112 per night from Jan 23 to Jan 24
Palazzo Veneziano
CHC Continental, BW Premier Collection by Best Western
CHC Continental, BW Premier Collection by Best Western
4 out of 5
Lista di Spagna, Cannaregio 166, Venice, VE
The price is $73 per night from Jan 25 to Jan 26
CHC Continental, BW Premier Collection by Best Western
H10 Palazzo Canova
H10 Palazzo Canova
4.5 out of 5
San Polo - Via Riva del Vin 744, Venice, VE
The price is $134 per night from Jan 24 to Jan 25
H10 Palazzo Canova
Bauer Palazzo
Bauer Palazzo
5 out of 5
San Marco 1459, Venice, VE
The price is $184 per night from Feb 1 to Feb 2
Bauer Palazzo
Splendid Venice – Starhotels Collezione
Splendid Venice – Starhotels Collezione
4 out of 5
San Marco Mercerie 760, Venice, VE
The price is $144 per night from Jan 23 to Jan 24
Splendid Venice – Starhotels Collezione
Riva del Vin Boutique Hotel
Riva del Vin Boutique Hotel
3.5 out of 5
Calle del Sturion 678, San Polo, Venice, VENEZIA
The price is $108 per night from Jan 24 to Jan 25
Riva del Vin Boutique Hotel
Sina Palazzo Sant'Angelo
Sina Palazzo Sant'Angelo
4 out of 5
Fondamenta del Teatro, San Marco 3878/b, Venice, VE
The price is $178 per night from Jan 25 to Jan 26
Sina Palazzo Sant'Angelo
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.