Back from a wonderful, short visit in mid-October and want to thank all of the regular contributors on this forum for all their tips and advice in response to others’ questions. We could not have planned our visit without your help. A couple of comments for others planning a trip:
1. We booked a shared water taxi transfer from airport to our hotel near S. Vio on the Venicelink site. It was one of the highlights of our visit (arriving on a bright sunny morning helped) and even at E 27/person, worth the cost in terms of convenience and fun.
2. The “Secret Itineraries” tour at the Doge’s palace was terrific – not only an interesting tour, but also a chance to learn about the history of Venice and the palace in a small group in a quiet setting, before joining the mad crush of the crowds pushing their way through the public rooms of the palace.
3. We stayed in Dorsoduro and loved it. Returning to our hotel late in the evening from dinner along almost deserted streets and canals in a light mist, with a stop on the Accademia Bridge for the view, was truly magical. This is a completely different Venice from the over crowded, somewhat shabby strip running between the station and Rialto and San Marco.
4. As all the regulars repeat over and over on this forum: check out the main tourist sites, but be sure also to spend lots of time away from the crowds just wandering around. And forget about your map – it won’t help you much anyway!