San Marco Souvenir Shops, Venice (Self Guided)

It would be a pity to leave Venice without having explored its specialty shops and bringing home something truly original. We've compiled a list of gifts and souvenirs that are unique to Venice. Pop into the specialty shops of San Marco suggested in this tour to find the most beautiful and original items.
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San Marco Souvenir Shops Map

Guide Name: San Marco Souvenir Shops
Guide Location: Italy » Venice (See other walking tours in Venice)
Guide Type: Self-guided Walking Tour (Sightseeing)
# of Attractions: 6
Tour Duration: 1 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 1.9 km
Author: Daniel
Rubelli Venezia

1) Rubelli Venezia

What to buy here: Fabrics.

Fabrics can be a perfect gift to bring back from Venice. Precious brocade, damasks, pillows, Gobelins, curtains, drapes for your dining tables, chairs and more are offered by a very old family company in it's showroom and shop near the "Canal Grande". The company called „Rubelli Venezia“ was founded in Venice in the year 1858. That means that the products combine the experience of five generations with very old venetian know-how. Today, Rubelli is a world famous trendsetter in the field of design. The materials they use are wool, silk, linen and cotton. It is a feast for the eyes to watch all this.

Rubelli exports their fabrics to over 50 countries. „Rubelli Venezia“ is also a decoration firm, decorating rooms in private houses, palaces and famous opera houses like the „Fenice“ in Venice. The manufacturing of these textiles is highly complicated and absolutely unique. Visiting the showroom of „Rubelli“ is an absolutely romantic event because it is located in a palace, the „Palazzo Corner Spinelli“. You can take the water bus, the so called „Vaporetto“ and get off at the „San Angelo“ station, which is two stops behind „Rialto Bridge“. The „Palazzo Corner Spinelli“ is situated directly at the Grand Canal. Entering the showroom, you can have a look at the marvelous and precious fabrics „Rubelli“ is manufacturing. And you have a wonderful view of the Grand Canal with it's gondolas, the Rialto Bridge and the palaces nearby. In the same building, you will find a „Rubelli“ shop as well. The address is: Campiello del Teatro 3877. Prices are ranging from about 40 Euro for a pillow; depending on your personal wishes, they may, of course, be higher (nearly without limit). The shop is opened from Tuesday to Saturday from 10:00 AM to 01:00 PM and from 03:00 PM to 07:00 PM.
Il Merletto

2) Il Merletto

What to buy here: Burano Lace. Burano lace is as world famous as Murano glass. Burano is an unique island which can be reached from Venice by boat in about one hour. The lace has been manufactured for over 400 years and is still exported nearly all over the world. The technique of producing the lace is very complicated and therefore one can say that this lace really is an artwork – it has nothing to do with mass-production.

In the middle of the 19th century, there was only one single woman left on Burano who knew all the details of this unique technique. To avoid having this specific technique pass into oblivion, a group of wealthy, local women founded a school on the island where this technique is now taught – it's called the „Scuola di Merletto“. Although Burano is very much worth a visit, there is no need to make a journey to this island in order to buy the wonderful small curtains, table-clothes, serviettes or other lace objects. You can do it in Venice too. But beware! Some shops in Venice are selling „Burano Lace“ which, in reality, was produced in China or Taiwan.

To be sure that you really buy the precious and original lace manufactured on Burano, you should visit the famous shop called „Il Merletto“. It is situated very close to San Mark's Square.

The „Il Merletto“ (address: Sotoportego del Cavalletto, Piazza San Marco 95) is opened daily from 10 to 5. The prices range from 3 EU up to more than 400 EU. The „Il Merletto“ has a direct connection to the school „Scuola del Merletto“ in Burano.

3) Cenedese

What to buy here: Muranoglass. This glass is world famous. There is only one place in the world where it is manufactured: the small island of Murano, situated near Venice. If you want to visit the island, that is no problem: just take the boat (the so called „Vaporetto“) – the journey will last just a few minutes. Being there, you have the opportunity to watch the production of Muranoglass (and buy it) because many factories are open for visitors. (By the way: some hotels in Venice offer and organize visits to the island for free). Having a look at the production of Muranoglass is as fascinating as looking at the products when they are finished. What you can watch here has nothing to do with mass production. The work of the manufacturer is very hard, the technique they use is very old, very complicated - and it is all handmade. The workers are melting two or more different kinds of glass – so many different forms and colors arise. Often some very precious materials such as gold or silver are added. The results are marvelous objects: animals, lamps, candlesticks, jewelry, cups, vases.... - in nearly all colors and sizes. Each one of these objects is really unique. Although they can be used as commodities, they are art objects as well.

Of course there is no need for you to make the trip to Murano in order to buy Muranoglass. You can do this in the city of Venice as well. But beware! Some shops, especially in those areas of Venice which are highly frequented by tourists, are offering „Muranoglass“ which, in reality, was produced in China or Taiwan.

If you want to be sure that you are going to buy original Muranoglass, just visit „Cenedese“, probably the best store selling these precious and unique objects. It is situated in the most popular region in Venice: the San Marc's Square („Piazza San Marco“) Number 44. This shop is more than 60 years old and the owner is proud of a long family tradition in manufactering and selling Muranoglass. The prices range from 30 EU up to 30,000 EU. The shop is opened daily 9:00 to 19:00, closed Sundays.
Fonderia Artistica Valese

4) Fonderia Artistica Valese

What to buy here: Venetian Doorknockers. Doorknockers are typical for the region (the „Veneto“) and particularly for Venice. When you are walking around the city, you can see them on many doors of the historic venetian houses and buildings. Doorknockers are made of metal and often show the head of an animal – in Venice, this is normally a lion's head. To this head a ring is fixed which one can use in order to knock on the door. Of course, doorknockers and especially the ring have to be massive and heavy in order to produce a knocking which is loud enough to be heared inside the house. Doorknockers are real art works because very often they symbolized the wealth and prosperity of it's owner – that's to say the resident of the house. Doorknockers are a marvellous gift – but be careful to buy an authentic one and not just a cheap one (possibly „made in Taiwan“).

The best you can do is buy a doorkocker which was produced in the venetian foundry by the name „Fonderia Artistica Valese“. This foundry exists since 1913 and is very famous for it's products. The showroom and the shop is situated in the „Calle Fiubera 793“, in the district of San Marco. Of course you can buy there many other products by this company – for instance, reproductions of some of the most famous buildings and monuments of Venice. The shop is opened Monday to Friday from 10.30 to 18.30 and on Saturday and Sunday from 11 up to 18.30. The prices for a doorknocker range from 60 EU up to 250 EU.
Marco Francalli

5) Marco Francalli

What to buy here: Il mondo in miniatura- Venice as a miniature.

Venice is such a marvelous town. It is absolute unique – no other city in the world is like Venice. And nearly everyone in the world knows some of the uncountable miracles Venice is presenting to its visitors: San Mark's square, the Rialto Bridge, the Grand Canal with the gondolas and palaces, the fish-market... Wouldn't it be nice to take a small piece of Venice back home (but not these plastic-gondolas made in Taiwan that are sold in so many gift shops)? That's possible, and it's a very special kind of gift. Venetian houses, churches, palaces and much more, built as miniatures. The materials used are: marble and resin. A group of artists has been offering this wonderful memento for over 20 years. All objects are handmade and hand-painted masterpieces. The artists even built a model of the whole town of Venice which took over 6000 work hours, it was called „Il mondo in miniatura“ - which means: „the world as a miniature“.

There are several shops around San Marc's Square where you can buy these objects. One of them is very close to San Marc's Square - the address is: San Marco 415; the name of the shop is "Marco Francalli". It's opened daily from 9 up to 19. One of the cheapest objects is a venetian lantern for about 39 EU and the prices go up to several hundred EURO for greater objects like palaces, churches, other various street buildings, etc.
Paolo Brandolisio

6) Paolo Brandolisio

What to buy here: A "forcola" scaled model or even a real one. Forcola is the Italian word for something very unique, very important and absolutely typical for Venice. A forcola is a part of a Venetian gondola. If you watch a gondola while sailing, you will easily recognize it: it's the thing where the driver of the gondola fixes his oar for rowing – it's the oar holder. Both the oar and oar holder are some of the most important parts of a Venetian gondola. And indeed, every oar and every oar holder that you can see on Venetian gondolas (there are about 500 of them) are unique. Not one is like the other. But why? Well, first of all they are handmade, second the oar and the oar holder a gondolier uses was made especially for that gondolier. The manufacturer has to know exactly how tall the gondolier is, how much does he weigh, even how long are his arms. Only knowing these things a manufacturer sets on creating these specialized parts.

An oar holder is a wonderful gift, and it is a real art work. You can buy one at the shop and workshop of Paolo Brandolisio. The shop address is: Corte Rotta 4725. Having a look inside the workshop itself is a treat in itself. Paolo Brandilisio is creating each oar holder by hand – from one single block of wood ( it is either walnut, cherry or pear wood). The price for a handmade "forcola" is a minimum of 400 EU - and it can be much more if you have special whishes concerning the wood or the size of the oar holder. You can also buy a “forcola” model of about one-third of real size, these go for about 150 EU. The shop is opened from 10 to 18, Monday to Friday.

Walking Tours in Venice, Italy

Create Your Own Walk in Venice

Create Your Own Walk in Venice

Creating your own self-guided walk in Venice is easy and fun. Choose the city attractions that you want to see and a walk route map will be created just for you. You can even set your hotel as the start point of the walk.
Piazza San Marco Walking Tour

Piazza San Marco Walking Tour

Piazza San Marco is the main square in Venice. This is a place that enriched the cultural, social and economic life of Venice in the course of its history. The square is the host of the famous Venice landmarks as the Doge's Palace, Basilica San Marco and the Procuratie. Piazza San Marco is always full of people and pigeons.

Tour Duration: 1 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 1.0 km
Titian's Tour

Titian's Tour

Tiziano Vecelli, also known as Titian, was one of the greatest painters of all time. He represents the Venetian school of the Italian Renaissance. His works are well-known for their realistic interpretation of biblical episodes. Titian had a style of his own that cannot be compared with that of the other artists of his period. This tour will guide you through the most important places in...  view more

Tour Duration: 2 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 3.9 km
Casanova's Tour

Casanova's Tour

Giacomo Casanova is one of the most famous personalities of Venice. He was a man of great culture. His interests ranged from love affairs and gambling to writing and alchemy. Born in a family of theater actors in 1725, he grew up surrounded by high society. He became an important personality in his own right, starting with his adolescence. This tour will show you places of great significance in...  view more

Tour Duration: 2 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 2.8 km
Religious Edifices Walking Tour

Religious Edifices Walking Tour

As a tourist, you definitely are aware that a country like Italy, especially a city like Venice, has a lot of sacred sites. It would be a pity not to take a look at some of the wonderful buildings built by humans in the name of the Lord. Glorious artists, architects and their disciples have given their lives and talent for our pleasure for centuries.

Tour Duration: 2 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 2.6 km
San Polo Walking Tour

San Polo Walking Tour

San Polo is the smallest and one of the oldest districts in Venice, established circa 9th century AD. It has hosted the city's main market since 1097, and been linked to the eastern bank of the Grande Canal, via the Rialto Bridge, since the 13th century. Apart from the bridge, other attractions in the area include the Church of San Giacomo di Rialto, the Campo San Polo, the House of Goldoni,...  view more

Tour Duration: 1 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 1.5 km
Wine Tour

Wine Tour

Italy - the land of the three seas, the land of mountains, of Casanova and cheese, the land of pizza and lasagna. And one of the most famous products - Italian wine. This guide lays down an itinerary that would lead you to the best wine shops in Venice. Take the tour in order to discover quality Italian wine.

Tour Duration: 2 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 3.5 km

Useful Travel Guides for Planning Your Trip

15 Distinctively Italian Things to Buy in Venice

15 Distinctively Italian Things to Buy in Venice

Venice has been a tourist mecca for over a century now, with millions of visitors flocking in every year to see this unique place on the face of the Earth. Many, if not all, of these people seek to obtain something memorable as a token of their stay in this city. By far, not all of them know which...

Tips for Exploring City on Foot at Your Own Pace

Whether you are in Venice for a quick stopover or have a few days to see the city in more detail, exploring it on foot, at your own pace, is definitely the way to go. Here are some tips for you to save money, see the best Venice has to offer, take good care of your feet while walking, and keep your mobile device – your ultimate "work horse" on this trip - well fed and safe.

Saving Money with City Passes

To save yourself time and money visiting Venice's multiple sights, you may want to resort to the so-called city passes, such as the Official All Venice City Pass, Venezia Unica Tourist City Pass, 72-Hour Venice Transportation Pass, or Venice Museum Pass.

A city pass combines all of or multiple Venice's top highlights, tours and experiences in one prepaid attractions pass, using which you can save incredible amounts on general admission fees as compared to purchasing tickets separately. Often, a city pass also allows you to skip the lines at major attractions, thus saving you precious time.

Staying at Walk-Friendly Hotels

Since you're keen on exploring cities on foot (we assume that you are, and this is why you're here), it is important that you stay at a hotel close to the city's major attractions. It saves you time and energy. Here are a few of Venice hotels that are conveniently located, but at the same time, also not so ridiculously expensive: Hotel Concordia, Hotel Al Ponte Dei Sospiri, Baglioni Hotel Luna.

Taking Care of Your Feet

To ensure ultimate satisfaction from a day of walking around the city as big as Venice, it is imperative to take good care of your feet so as to avoid unpleasant things like blisters, cold or overheated soles, itchy, irritated or otherwise damaged (cracked) skin, etc. Luckily, these days there is no shortage of remedies to address (and, ideally, to prevent) these and other potential problems with feet. Among them: Compression Socks, Rechargeable Battery-Powered Thermo Socks for Cold Weather, Foot Repair Cream, Deodorant Powder, Shoes UV Sterilizer, and many more that you may wish to find a place in your travel kit for.

Travel Gadgets for Your Mobile Device

Your mobile phone or tablet will be your work horse on a self-guided walk. They offer tour map, guide you from one attraction to another, and provide informative background for the sights you wish to visit. Therefore it is absolutely essential to plan against unexpected power outages in the wrong place at the wrong time, much as to ensure the safety of your device.

For these and other contingencies, here's the list of useful appliances: Portable Charger/External Battery Pack, Worldwide Travel Charger Adapter, Power Converter for International Travel Adapter, and Mobile Device Leash.

Exploring City on Guided Tours

We have a strong bias towards exploring a city on foot, at your own pace, because this is how you get to see things up close with a maximum freedom. You decide how much time you wish to spend at each attraction and don't have to worry about following a crowd. That said, however, we also understand that some of you may want to go with a guided tour. If that is your case, here are some guided tours to consider. Be ready to fork out a bit of money, though, as a guided tour of Venice typically costs from around US$20 up to more than US$200 per person:

- Board a hop-on hop-off sightseeing boat to view all of Venice's top attractions while listening in the headsets to the commentary provided in a variety of languages, and be able get on and off at any of the stops along the route as often as you like.

- Experience Venice from dry land and water on the combo of 2-hour walk and half-hour gondola ride around the historic center, marveling at the Byzantine monuments and gliding down the canals of this marvelous city.

- Have a double pleasure for your eyes and ears combining a 30-minute gondola ride with a serenade, wafting by the fascinating sights of Venice in the company of a traditionally-dressed gondolier and a singer aboard.

- Having quenched your appetite for sightseeing, don't forget to treat yourself to some delicious specialties of Venice as well. Take a 2.5-hour tour led by a local guide to see the city's highlights on waters, plus check out several notable eateries to savor authentic Venetian delights.

- Discover the Jewish side of Venice from a culinary standpoint on a food tour of the historic Jewish ghetto. Guided by a food-connoisseur, you will visit a number of joints offering authentic local dishes thus acquainting yourself with the rich culture and food traditions of the Venetian Jews.

- Architecture-wise there's so much more to Venice than just St. Mark's Square. Be welcome to prove it to yourself on the guided walk exploring the artistic richness of Venice away from the trodden tourist paths.

Day Trips

If you have a day to spare whilst in Venice, why not use it to explore some of the out-of-town destinations, like Verona, Valpolicella, Florence, or the Dolomite Mountains. For as little as US$140+ to US$180+ per person you will get a chance to visit one of the most romantic cities in Italy (hometown of Romeo and Juliet), learn about Veneto’s winemaking heritage and sample the local wines, visit the Tuscan capital of Florence, soak up the bracing mountain scenery, and more. For any of these tours you will be picked up either straight at your hotel or a designated place in Venice, and transported by a comfortable air-conditioned coach or minibus or train to the destination of your choice and back again.