Private Venice Highlights Tour with Gondola Ride

2.5 Hours of Sightseeing in Venice, Italy

Our private Venice Highlights Tour features all of Venice’s best sights in 2.5 hours. With a private Venice tour guide, explore St. Mark’s Square, St. Mark’s Basilica, Rialto Bridge, and the Grand Canal on a relaxing gondola ride.


While this is a walking tour, there are no hills, so it is pretty smooth walking.

2.5 h
custom size
from 2 reviews
1 Meet in St. Mark's Square
2 St. Mark's Basilica
3 Hidden Gems in Venice
4 Rialto Bridge & Grand Canal
5 Rialto Neighborhood
6 Venetian "Campos"
7 Palazzo Contarini del Bovolo
8 Gondola Ride
9 Goodbye!


Gondola Ride
St Mark's Basilica
Are you taking a day trip to Venice? This private Venice Highlights Tour visits all of Venice’s best landmarks in 2.5 hours, leaving you plenty of time for unstructured leisure time in the Floating City. Check off St. Mark's Basilica, a gondola ride and the Rialto Bridge from your bucket list. Then, move on to an afternoon of shopping, eating cicchetti and wandering through one of the most beautiful cities in the world. This 2.5-hour tour includes:
  • - St. Mark's Square and St. Mark's Basilica
  • - Rialto Bridge
  • - Private English-speaking tour guide
  • - A short Venice Gondola ride

St. Mark's Square in Venice

Your private tour of Venice begins in St. Mark’s Square. Home to landmarks that include St. Mark’s Basilica and Doge’s Palace, St. Mark’s Square is also Venice’s largest Piazza (public square). In addition, this historic gathering spot is a central location for festivities associated with Venice Carnivale, the legendary weeks-long celebration.

St. Mark's Basilica - The Church of Gold

Next, head to St. Mark’s Basilica with your private tour guide. Enter the church with your skip the line tickets, perfect for avoiding the long queues that form in summer months. Once inside, you’ll immediately understand why it is known as the "Church of Gold”. The basilica’s interior is lined by 4,240 square meters of gilded mosaics that took over eight centuries to complete. Treasures shipped to Venice after the fall of Constantinople in 1204 make up some of the most important works of art in St. Peter's. These include the four bronze horses and The Pala d’Oro ( the basilica’s high altar).
From November through March, St. Mark’s Basilica does not offer skip the line entry as lines are generally non-existent. Since St. Mark's Basilica is a sacred place, men and women must have their knees and shoulders covered once inside. You may be refused entry to a portion of your private tour otherwise. As summers in Venice are hot - a great alternative is to bring a shawl/scarf/sweater with you for covering your knees and shoulders when necessary.

Rialto Bridge and Neighborhood

A short walk away from St. Mark’s Square is the Rialto Bridge, one of Venice’s most iconic landmarks. One of the oldest of the four bridges that cross the Grand Canal, this bridge features a 24-foot-tall arch. Across the bridge is Venice’s Rialto Market, located in the Rialto neighborhood. This place is synonymous with Venice’s food culture.

Gondola Ride in Venice

At the conclusion of your private walking tour of Venice, embark on a short gondola ride - an essential activity for visitors to the Floating City. The city of Venice only issues roughly 400 gondolier licenses per year, making the profession an esteemed one. In addition to operating gondolas, Gondoliers are also Venice’s unofficial storytellers and historians.
At the conclusion of your gondola ride, you'll be brought back to St. Mark’s Square. Don’t forget to ask your private tour guide where the best places to eat and drink in Venice are. We’ll gladly point you in the direction of Venice’s best cuisine. We also offer a Venice food tour of the Rialto Market and the city’s best spots for cicchetti.