VIP Experience: Ecology of Venice Tour by Private Boat

Explore the ecosystem of the Venice Lagoon and how it is adapting to climate change
From US$1,733 privately
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Tour Details
3 hours
Product Type
  • Saint Erasmus Island
  • MOSE site
  • Forte Sant’Andrea
  • Artificial and Natural Salt Marshes
Photos & Highlights
  • Journey through the lagoon by boat, seeing the city from a new perspective as you learn about the ecology of the lagoon and the challenges it faces in the future
  • Led by an expert ecologist
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Tour Description
While the Venice Lagoon remains a popular attraction for visitors, there's much more to this waterway than beautiful scenery. This three-hour excursion through the Venetian lagoon, led by a marine scientist, follows the evolution of the lagoon through its history and its effect on the environment. It also takes us to visit salt marshes teeming with wildlife and stunning seagrass meadows — which are difficult to access except by small private boats. This Venice Lagoon Tour is a wonderful way to get out of central Venice and experience this unique ecosystem in the company of a scientist whose knowledge and research on the Lagoon environment have been critical to shaping nature conservation policies in the region. You'll never look at Venice the same way again.

Climate Change and the Disappearing City

Our adventure begins by boarding your private boat and departing from the Arsenal. We'll take a quick cruise through this zone to discuss the vast changes that have been taking place in Venice of late as it deals with the effects of climate change and changing water levels. This will set the stage for a dynamic conversation about human settlement around the lagoon over the last millennia and the modern pressures that are resulting from that, which will carry us through the day.

Venice Lagoon Tour

Heading northeast, we will navigate alongside the agricultural island of Sant'Erasmo which will give us a chance to explore the major changes that affected the Venetian coastline in the last century and to understand the importance of coastal aquifers and their vulnerability under increasing sea-levels. On our way, we’ll border newly reconstructed marshes and the ecosystems associated with them while discussing future actions for the protection of coastal communities. We may make a stop on land if anyone needs a refreshment or to use the bathroom before we continue on for the second half of our tour.

Looking to see the city proper on the water? Try our Venice Boat Tour. Those preferring to explore on dry land should see our Venice City Tour.

Looking to the Future

We then head towards the Lido Inlet where we can visit the site where MOSE, a system of barriers that close off the Lagoon during high water was built. Our expert has served as a consultant to this project and will discuss/illustrate both the technical and controversial political issues that are connected with it. We will then steam towards the area of the lagoon known as Bacan to explore the vital function of seagrass meadows on the lagoon ecosystem. Finally, we will make our way back to the city alongside fortress of S. Andrea where the effects of local subsidence and sea-level rise in the last few centuries will draw our attention on the global issue of resilience.

Take Aways

Throughout our time together, our guide will lead a discussion of how rising waters and modifications associated with this process impact the Lagoon and other coastal cities alike. At the end of our excursion, we will have an understanding of the physical processes in the lagoon, the modifications that are underway, and the impact these modifications will have on the lagoon environment, which will all, in turn, affect the lives and future of Venice and its social, historic and cultural heritage.


What is a private tour?
Our private tours are limited exclusively to travelers in your party. They are designed to provide a learning experience that is completely tailored to you and your traveling companions. Private tours give you the ability to dive into any special interests in your group, and enjoy more personalized time with your guide.

Is the time for this tour flexible?
The start times for this tour depend on the boat service availability, so we may reach out to you regarding a new start time slightly different than the original. However, it's difficult for us to request specific times to the boat provider on your behalf so we don't take custom start time requests from clients for this tour.

Does this tour make any stops on land?
While the entire tour will be led on a private boat, there will be an opportunity to stop on land to use the bathroom at a midway point in the tour.

Where You'll Start
(4.78) 181 Reviews

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This was an amazing trip. We saw another side of Venice and learned about the ecological history and future of the lagoon. Andrea provided unique details and adjusted to highlight the opportunistic observation of birds.
Luca was great! My twelve-year old grandson loved the whole experience. Luca didn't talk to him as though he were a child, but he did speak very clearly about all of the complications of Venice's history with water and how Venice is dealing with the challenges of rising sea levels. My grandson was riveted. We especially loved our visit to the island of San Anselmo. All in all, a memorable experience! Thank you, Luca!
OUtstanding trip. Andrea showed us every possible aspect of the lagoon and has deep knowledge. We wish him good luck in his research. good swing through the Arsenal at the end.