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VFR tour questions

We are going on the VFR tour in April and the description of the itinerary on the web page says after the first morning walking tour we are free the rest of the afternoon to explore various things, including St Marks Basilica among other things on the list.
On my tour account it has a list of things to do “ we do not do as a group” that does not include the basilica. Can anyone who has been on the tour give their experience? So I am unsure if I need to book tickets or not. Thanks

Posted by
14175 posts

I did the Best of Italy, not VFR and yes, I got tickets to St Marks on my own. I recommend that as the line was long to get tickets at the entrance. Do contact the office and see what time they expect the walking tour to be finished so you can figure from there.

BTW, I went for the whole 9 yards at St Marks. I did the Pala d'Oro behind the altar plus the Museum that is upstairs with the awesome view of St Mark's Square.

I think it is difficult to get group visit tickets to this venue which is why it's not included.

Posted by
7404 posts

We purchased the basilica tickets on-line for a trip last August. If you have the chance with the tour’s timing, I selected the first time period of the day, and it was one of the best experiences - been there several times. The interior wasn’t crowded with people, and we thoroughly enjoyed a peaceful experience.

Posted by
115 posts

It was included on our tour. But very crowed and crazy. We went another time to Venice on our own, and went and got "skip the line" tickets for both the Basilica and tower, late in the day when the cruise ships leave, which was wonderful.

Posted by
6632 posts

When I was on this tour a few years ago, the morning walk ended inside St. Mark's Basilica, specifically upstairs on the balcony. That was great, as I got to spend more time admiring the interior and visiting the museum. My next stop was the Doge's Palace (where I got in fast, having bought a combo ticket at the Correr Museum the day before the tour started). Then I had time for more, which I don't recall specifically now.

My impression was that the tour gets you inside the Basilica before leaving you on your own. The RS tour office should be able to verify this. You're smart to be planning ahead for your free time. I hope you can get to Venice a few days before the tour starts, for there's a great deal more to see there.

Posted by
72 posts

I was on this tour in October. If you want to go inside the Basilica you need to purchase tickets.

Posted by
120 posts

I verified with the office that inside the basilica is not included in the tour so I will prebook tickets for after the morning walking tour.

Posted by
6632 posts

Sorry to hear this. I guess we got lucky in 2018.

Posted by
120 posts

The office said the first day walking tour is over around noon. They said they were unable to obtain group tickets for their tours. So I went ahead and booked the complete tour for €20 each for 2 pm.