What is more magic than visiting Venice?

Seeing Venice as it was intended to be enjoyed - in a traditional vessel, gliding silently above the water, with an expert that learned to row as a child, most likely from his father who was a Gondolier before him.

The hand constructed Gondola has been the preferred method of transport for Nobles and  Lovers for centuries, and it is still possible to travel the same way today as the Doge did centuries ago.

While some tourists complain that they have been "taken" by seedy gondoliers, there are organizations such as Gondoliers Cooperatives and collective Gondolier stands which protect the savvy traveller from the rogue individual that pops up from under a bridge with calls of "Gondola Gondola". That way there is no speculation on prices to unwary travellers and no surprises or reentry earlier than planned. You don't take a taxi at the airport which is parked outside the official taxi-stand just because he says "discount to downtown", why do it with something as precious as a once-in-a-lifetime tour of Venice at waterlevel?

While a gondola ride is not cheap, sharing the ride with other travellers (up to 6 passengers per gondola costs the same price as 1 or 2) is an option to significantly reduce the cost, and meet new people too. When travelling as a group (more than 6) or when a special occasion (anniversary, birthday, or just a first trip to the Serenissima) calls for music, or wine, or a special route, better to reserve ahead of time. Many tour operators let you book in advance and offer rates per person as well, while the official fares are published and maintained on the Institution of the Gondola website. Other great information about Venice history and the gondola are available for free and this travel blog, made by a venetian : Venice Gondola