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Tour Venice with Susan, Art Historian

Fully-planned day with private guide in Venice
From US$1,789 privately
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Tour Details
8 hours
Product Type
  • Accademia Gallery Venice
  • Santa Maria della Salute
  • Scuola di San Giorgio degli Schiavoni
  • San Zaccaria
  • Santa Maria della Pieta Church
Photos & Highlights
  • A scholarly day in Venice, highlighted by a tour of the Accademia Gallery and masterpieces of Venetian art
  • Led by Susan, art historian and Venice private guide
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Tour Description
Meet Susan, who will be guiding us off the beaten path towards several leading works in the Venetian art history canon. Together we will discover the art, architecture, and social history of Venice through its finest art museum, as well as superlative and often surprising examples of Venetian art and architecture in the Dorsoduro and Castello districts. 

Susan is a published writer who has over ten years of experience teaching art history courses for prestigious university programs in the United Kingdom and Italy. After graduating with a degree in the history of at and Italian in 1998, she obtained an M.A. concentrating on art and architecture in Venice, and in 2004 she completed her specialization with a Ph.D. on Venetian Renaissance altarpieces. 

Inspired itinerary: Hidden Gems in Venetian Art Museums

Our day together will begin at Venice’s Accademia galleries, the world’s premier collection of paintings created by Bellini, Titian, Carpaccio, and other masters of the Italian Renaissance. As we examine each work, we will gain a unique appreciation of the aesthetic and innovative qualities of Venetian art, as we uncover the themes and stories embedded in some of the most significant pieces in the collection.

After our journey through the Accademia, we will travel by vaporetto to the island of San Giorgio Maggiore, for a look at the monumental basilica built by the great and highly influential Andrea Palladio, as well as view important paintings by the great Jacopo Tintoretto. Time permitting, we might ascend the bell tower for an incomparable view across the whole city. Following a pause for lunch in the Castello area, we will venture into the Scuola di San Giorgio, which was founded in the fifteenth century as a society of migrant workers from the other side of the Adriatic. Here we will experience Carpaccio’s charming and colorful canvases, showcased in their original location. 

From here we will enjoy a short stroll to the Pieta – Venice’s foremost orphanage which was famed for its music-making, and where the great composer Antonio Vivaldi taught music for many years. An archivist will accompany our backstage visit of this historic institution, and we will learn how Venice supported and protected its most vulnerable children, and we will learn something of their lives. Our tour takes us to the singing galleries where the girl orphans performed heavenly music in the elegant eighteenth-century venue, designed by Giorgio Massari–no doubt with advice from Vivaldi himself. This brings us closer to the neoclassical architecture and the superb ceiling frescoes with an angelic choir and orchestra, painted by the great Giambattista Tiepolo, credited as Europe’s greatest eighteenth century painter.

Our final stop is San Zaccaria, once Venice’s elite convent with close ties to the Venetian state.  With its flooded crypt, layers of architecture, and truly extraordinary examples of Venetian paintings, by artists like Bellini and Tintoretto, it is the most evocative place to consider the history of the women of Venice, many of whom lived out their lives in the city’s convents. 


What is included in the itinerary?
Venice Private Guide itineraries include the cost of your time with your private guide and usually include museum or monument entrance tickets.  Lunch and refreshments are at your expense. Accommodation is not included.

Does Context offer Pre-Travel seminars about Venice?
Yes! Susan would be delighted to meet you virtually, prior to your travel. To explore our available virtual learning pathways, please click here.

Is this suitable for children and/or travelers with mobility challenges? 
Yes. We can adapt the itinerary based on the ages, needs, and interests of travelers in your party. Please share any mobility concerns with us at the time of booking.

Where do we meet? Where does it end?
Susan's full-day itinerary in Venice will meet at the Accademia Gallery and end near San Zaccaria. Your confirmation email will have the exact meeting point details along with a map.

What if it’s raining?
Tours operate rain or shine, but in the case of inclement weather, your expert will modify the tour so more time is spent indoors. It never hurts to be prepared; we encourage keeping an eye on the weather and bringing along an umbrella, sunscreen, water, or a hat as needed. 
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1 Review (5.0)

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This was a terrific tour. We learned a lot and had a blast!