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Venice and the River Po

Join La Bella Vita and explore the islands of the Venetian lagoon and the Po River on this luxury cruise from Venice. Includes transfers, excursions, open bar and meals prepared by a Master Chef

Hotel Barge Holiday
  • Venice
  • Chioggia
  • Venice
  • La Bella Vita
  • Chioggia

Call us now on 01756 706500 to secure your cabin!


Beginning with a full day to explore the magical city of Venice, the lagoon islands and the treasures of the Po River including San Pietro, Chioggia and the lakeside city of Mantua - all from the comfort of the 20-passenger La Bella Vita. On alternate weeks, the cruise operates in reverse, departing from Mantua and ending in Venice.

Explore some lesser-known gems of Venice, and sail past colourful lagoon islands and untamed beaches to Chioggia, an island town and Venice in miniature. Continue to Taglio di Po and enjoy a special dinner ashore hosted by the owners of the beautiful 17th-century Villa Ca'Zen, where Lord Byron wrote some of his best poetry.

Visit the Archaeological Museum in the ancient Etruscan town of Adria, enjoy a private wine tasting at the Bagnoli Estate and explore the Renaissance city of Ferrara, home to the Schifanoia Palace, renowned for its magnificent 15th-century frescoes. This cruise concludes in Mantua, home of the poet Virgil and artists Mantegna and Donatello.

La Bella Vita's decks provide an enviable vantage point for the beautiful scenery gliding by on this cruise. Stylish and spacious, she has 2 suites on the upper deck and 8 staterooms below, all en suite. Relax and enjoy excellent service, a 24-hour bar, fine food and wine and the guidance of an expert tour guide. There are bicycles available for passengers' use.

EW873 Operated by European Waterways


Po River Itinerary

Day 1 - Venice

You will be picked up from Hotel Laguna Palace in Mestre or Piazzale Roma Square** in Venice and transferred by private chauffeured minibus to La Bella Vita for a Prosecco welcome. An afternoon cruise takes us along the Giudecca Canal past some of Venice's most famous monuments: the Chiesa del Redentore, the impressive Basilica di Santa Maria Madonna della Salute and the Punta della Dogana to our mooring outside the Naval Museum. Enjoy a stroll to St Mark's Square and a guided tour of the Doge's Palace before dinner on board.

Day 2 - San Pietro

Guided walking tour to Castello District, perhaps discovering some hidden parts of the city of Veniza: the gardens of the Biennale Exhibition of Modern Arts, Palladio's Church of San Pietro in Castello, the Naval Museum with a model of the Bucintoro (Doge's Boat) and the Pavilion of Gondolas housing Peggy Guggenheim's own vessel. Late afternoon cruise to Pellestrina separating the Venetian Lagoon from the Adriatic Sea, along the Canal of the Orphans passing lagoon islands with their ancient monasteries, painted fishing boats and tiny churches. Time perhaps for a walk or cycle ride along the 18th century Istrian sea wall. Dinner on board.

Day 3 - Taglio Di Po

After breakfast, we cruise to Chioggia, city of Goldoni’s plays. Here we visit the 18th century Church of San Domenico set on its own island, to see Carpaccio’s St Paul, his last recorded painting and other works of art by Tintoretto and Bassano. We also admire the Piazzetta Vigo and visit the colourful fish market. There will also be the opportunity to enjoy a short tour of Chioggia’s pretty canals in a traditional locally-built boat, before re-joining La Bella Vita at the Po Delta. Passing through a nature reserve with flamingos and occasional heron, snipe and other wildfowl, we travel upriver to Taglio di Po for dinner ashore hosted by the owners at the beautiful 17thC Villa Ca’Zen, a private stately home by the river where Lord Byron courted the Countess Giuccioli and wrote some of his best poetry.

Day 4 - Adria - Bosaro

This morning we join the Bianco Canal and cruise to Adria, an ancient Etruscan town where we visit the Archaeological Museum. After lunch on board, we drive to the Bagnoli Estate to tour the Renaissance gardens and wine cellars of the 17thC Villa Widmann Borletti to enjoy a private tasting of their renowned estate-grown vintages. This winery has been supplying Venetian society for centuries. Afterwards, we rejoin La Bella Vita at Zelo. Dinner on board.

Day 5 - Governolo

Morning excursion with a guided tour of the Renaissance city of Ferrara, including the Schifanoia Palace, renowned for its fabulous 15th-century frescoes. We also admire the exterior of the Estense Castle and its moat and visit the magnificent cathedral with its facade of sculpted images described as an illustrated Bible. Return to the hotel barge moored in Trevenzuolo for an afternoon canal cruise past villages and farmsteads to Governolo and dinner on board.

Day 6 - Mantua

Our final cruise has a dramatic approach to Mantua, home of the poet Virgil, artists Mantegna and Donatello and a captivating lakeside setting. Mantua displays extraordinary neo-classical and baroque architecture, portrayed in the 14thC Ducal Palace housing some 15 gardens and courtyards, a museum, basilica and theatre. The intricate frescoes, Gallery of Mirrors and exquisite Rivers Room and 12,000 paintings and sculptures all create a Grand Finale to our Italian Renaissance adventure. Captain’s Farewell Dinner on board

Day 7 - Mantua

After breakfast, guests are transferred by private chauffeured minibus to the Hotel Laguna Palace in Mestre or Piazzale Roma** in Venice.

PLEASE NOTE: On alternate weeks the cruise runs in the reverse direction. This is a sample itinerary and is subject to change. ** Alternative locations possible for Private Charter bookings

Price Includes

  • 6-nights accommodation on 20 passenger Hotel Barge La Bella Vita
  • All meals on board catered for by the on board Master Chef
  • Open bar with a large range of alcoholic and non alcoholic drinks
  • All wines served throughout the cruise
  • Excursions and admittance fees as per itinerary
  • Use of barge facilities including bicycles
  • Transfers to and from barge