Lido Beach venice?

Hi all: I am hoping to talk my husband into leaving a day early from the US so we can have 2 full days in Venice, plus maybe a morning before leaving for Rome. I am thinking we will be very low key these days. We will mostly wander around, see St. Mark's, Rialto bridge, ride the vaporetto but no other real plans - just getting adjusted from the time change and long trip. Boys ages 9 and 11 so we will not be doing much museum touring. Mostly just getting immersed into another culture by doing every day things. I read a tiny blurb about Lido beach in Rick's book, but not much info. I was thinking this might be a nice low key thing to do? My boys love beaches - even here in San Francisco where they are kind of dirty and cold! I am really trying to please the kids the first few days so they start off feeling happy about the trip, and then easing them into some heavier sightseeing as we get down to Rome. :) Is this a good place to hang out for an afternoon or day? If not, anything else you think that would please the kids? This will May 310 June 1 time frame in 2014. Thanks!!!
Kim :)

Posted by Lise
St. Louis, MO (formerly, Windermere, FL)
339 posts

The boys will have so much fun exploring the narrow "streets" and passages of Venice! Take a vaporetto to the island of Murano for a fun boat ride to see the glass blowers and wander around a small island that is similar to but more earthy and rustic than Venice itself. There is also small fishing industry in Murano and you can see the small boats come in the canals and the boys who help their families are busy with nets and lines - quite different than American culture. This would fill an afternoon or morning. Remember, many places close for the afternoon rest (siesta) so plan accordingly. Also, in Rome try to fit in the climb to the top of St. Peters. The narrow curved staircase is quite an engineering feat that leads to a spectacular view. My children, now adults, still talk about it. Have a wonderful time!

Posted by Michael
Seattle, WA, USA
5763 posts

If you were talking about July or August the answer would be a definite yes. But end of May is trickier. We were there from May 26 to May 28 in 2011 and the Lido beach hadn't really started up yet. We had no problem getting to the beach, but very few of the support businesses (cafes, stores) had opened so it felt very deserted. Here's a collection of photos I took that contain photos of the Lido at that time of year so you can see what I mean: Lido May 2011 But here's a different thought. Search Amazon for "Treasure Hunt Venice" Happy travels.

Posted by Harold
New York, NY, USA
2852 posts

Well, if you like bleh beaches, the Lido certainly fills the bill <g>. I think your plan is wonderful. Venice will be so novel for all of you, but particularly for your kids, that you won't need to fill time with designated "sights." In addition to the above tips, you may be interested in San Michele, the cemetery island. I found it fascinating (most of the graves have photos of the deceased on them). But just seeing how modern life has to be adapted to function on islands in a lagoon will be fascinating for your kids. Look for all the different kinds of boats (UPS, ambulance, etc). Go to the Rialto fish market. Go to areas like Dorsoduro, away from the crowds near the tourist sights. Got to a supermarket (it won't look very "super," as there's just no space for more than what we would call a superette or minimart).

Posted by Roberto
Fremont, CA, USA
3342 posts

They won't be bored in Venice. Lido is not worth your time. Just don't overload them with museums and they will be fine.

Posted by Kim
San Francisco
118 posts

OK thanks everyone! We will probably give it a pass this time! Thanks for the advice! Kim

Posted by Michael
Seattle, WA, USA
5763 posts

If you want to give them a lot of space to run around, there are some very nice public gardens with swing sets, etc. in the Sant'Elena/Castello district (the tail of the fish, to the southeast, when looking at a map of Venice). Very few tourists will be there - it's almost exclusively used by the locals. Your boys can run around and you can sit on the benches enjoying the gorgeous views of the ships in the lagoon.

Posted by Sasha
Bainbridge Island
1590 posts

Boys that age are a little old for swingsets and just " running around" in a park. They might enjoy kicking a soccer ball around with the local kids if you see that going on. And actually I would suggest going over tonLido, not for the beach, but for a bike ride. You'd get a boat ride across the lagoon, a chance to see and walk on the beach,ma bike ride, and a picnic or gelato stop. Might make for a nice afternoon break from the city stuff.

Posted by Roberto
Fremont, CA, USA
3342 posts

1. Visit the Guggenheim museum on a Sunday. I think they still have the "kids' day' on sundays. 2. Take a walk on the Fondamenta delle Zattere. There are several gelaterie and the view is great. 3. Don't miss a tour of the Murano furnaces. They show how to make those glass works and your kids will be fascinated by that. 4. The Doge's palace should be fun with the prison and the secret passages. 5. Museo Storico Navale e Arsenale. If they like ancient ships and shipbuilding they might like that.
6. Give them their own cameras (even if disposables), they can have fun taking pictures. Venice is unique, they'll have a ball.