Blue Water Holidays
Blue Water Holidays - ABTA - ATOL - CLIA
Experts in River and Small Ship Cruising Holidays since 2002
01756 706500 +44 1756 706500
Blue Water Holidays - ABTA - ATOL - CLIA
01756 706500
+44 1756 706500
Venice River Cruises

Venice River Cruises

The unique city of Venice is spread across 117 islands connected by 409 bridges, a fascinating maze of canals, narrow streets and small squares bordered by beautiful churches and ancient palaces.

The heart of Venice is St Mark's Square, with its famous Cathedral. Wander through the many narrow alleyways, visit the famous Rialto Bridge, perhaps take a waterbus on the Grand Canal, or maybe a gondola trip. Discover some of Venice's incredible Gothic palaces - most notably the Palace of the Doges, who ruled the republic, and the infamous Bridge of Sighs.

Cruise Collection 2019 / 2020

About Venice River Cruises

Our short Venice cruise breaks give ample time to enjoy Venice, and also include a trip across the Venice lagoon. Optional excursions include the famous Venice lagoon islands of Murano and Burano with their specialist shops and glass workshops. Your floating hotel Michelangelo is a superb base for exploring Venice and the islands of the lagoon - and with all meals included, plus unlimited complimentary house wine, beer, mineral water and soft drinks on board between April and October, is excellent value!

Coveted through the ages by aristocrats and invaders alike, Italy's River Po Valley overflows with a wealth of art, culture and tradition. Longer Venice river cruises visit this fascinating area to discover the cradle of the Renaissance. Excursions may include visits to the renowned cities of Padua, Mantua, Ferrare and Verona of Romeo and Juliet fame.

Venice St Mark's cathedralSt Mark's Cathedral

Please note that due to Italian regulations these ships cannot take passengers when sailing the Adriatic Sea between the Venice lagoon and the mouth of the River Po.

Venice River Cruise Highlights

Burano (Italy)

Burano is a fishing community, famous for its brightly-painted houses, and for fine lacemaking. At the Museo del Merletto you can see lace-makers at work and examples are sold throughout the island. San Martino is the only church on Burano, and is well-known for its tilting bell tower.



Chioggia is situated on an island in the Venetian lagoon, and in contrast to Venice, is a simple fishing town with one broad street, the Corso del Popolo which runs the length of the island. Beside the Piazzatta Vigo is a Venetian sculpture of a lion and a 12th-century column, and the church of San Domenico houses works by Tintoretto and Diziani. There are several fish restaurants along the main street.

Chioggia (Italy)

Mantua (Italy)

Fine Renaissance buildings bordering three large squares make up the centre of this historic city, which is surrounded by lakes. The wealthy Gonzaga family were great patrons of the arts, and left behind a string of impressive landmarks including the Palazzo Te, the arcaded Palazzo Ducale, and the Basilica de Sant Andrea.


Murano (Italy)

Murano became a centre of glass-making when in 1291 the Venetian Republic ordered the artisans to move because of the danger of fire from their foundries. There are numerous galleries selling a variety of glass beads, jewellery and sculptures. Perhaps see the mosaic pavement in Basilica dei Santa Maria and Palazzo Da Mula, the summer palace of Venetian aristocrats.


Padua (Italy)

The fabulous walled city of Padua is a treasure for art-lovers, and its most-visited attraction is the Scrovegni Chapel which houses 14th-century frescoes by Giotto. Other delights include Donatello’s equestrian statue in front of the Basilica de San Antonio, the impressive Prato della Valle, a square bordered by statues and the Caffee Pedrocchi, once a favourite haunt of Lord Byron.


Torcello (Italy)

The island of Torcello in the Venetian lagoon was once a splendid and important community but now has a population of only 100 people. There are a few remnants of its past glory, including Devil's Bridge, the church of Santa Maria Assunta and its Byzantine mosaics, and two 14th century palaces which house the island's museum.


Venice (Italy)

The glorious buildings along the Grand Canal are a breathtaking sight - the ornate fa'ades of 15th century Palazzo Dario and Ca' d'Oro, the Rialto and St Mark's Square and Basilica. Venice is renowned for its Murano glass and for its exclusive shops. Upmarket boutiques run from Piazza San Marco to the Accademia Bridge and more unusual wares are available in Frezzeria.


Verona (Italy)

The World Heritage Site of Verona has many important buildings and structures, including the Arco dei Gavi, a Roman arch at the end of the Via Postumia, and the remarkable Castelvecchio, a castle dating back to the Middle Ages. The handsome fortified Scaliger Bridge spans the Adige River, and the gothic Scaliger Tombs date back to the 13th century.


Customer Reviews

The Venice cruise was a wonderful few days and I would certainly recommend it.

Some highlights:

1.The excursions which were very good value. I particularly liked Burano - a very pretty little island. The morning in Chioggia was very enjoyable. The market was great fun and the Church of St Dominic had some lovely pictures including a Tintoretto. The visit to Padua was made special by our English speaking guide who was very informative, never boring and had a wonderful sense of humour! She showed us round St Anthonys Basilica, a fascinating and beautiful church, and pointed out the famous Cafe Pedrucci whose speciality is a creamy mint coffee - highly recommended! (Tip - its cheaper if you drink it standing at the bar!)

2.Exploring Venice. Lovely little shops -especially for leather, Murano glass, and paper. Beautiful everywhere you look especially the glimpses down the little canals- we even saw a bride and groom going to church in a gondola! The Rialto area was very crowded but we found a lovely quiet campo where we sat in the sun for lunch and a much -needed rest before going to the Accademia. (Tip- if over 65 take your passport and get in free.) Although we saw some lovely pictures I was a bit disappointed in this gallery as a lot of the rooms were closed and there were no explanations and the attendants were very unhelpful. Our spirits were unexpectedly restored in the nearby Guggenheim Collection which has some amazing modern sculptures set in a beautiful garden and a very good collection of pictures. A quiet green haven and a good cafe - not to be missed!

3.The meals on board were superb and they were very generous with the free wine! In fact every one took wonderful care of us and made sure we understood all the arrangements which were often explained to us at our table in English by our English-speaking stewardess. The cabins were very comfortable and I had a beautiful view of the lagoon and Venice. We were very conveniently situated with just a short walk along the quay to St Marks square.

As you can see from the pics you even organised the weather for us! Many thanks to everyone at Blue Water Holidays for an excellent holiday.

Thank you, Blue Water, you arranged everything very well from start to finish. Venice was magical.

We stayed on the Michelangelo in Venice from 5th to 9th March and had a wonderful experience. The staff and crew were efficient, courteous and friendly. The cabins were roomy and kept spotlessly clean. After the embarkation at the St. Basilio Quay the ship was moored for the rest of the trip just a 15 minute walk along the lovely quayside from Giardini to St. Marks Square. This central location was vital for me as I use a wheeled walking aid and my husband was able to carry it over the bridges where necessary and we could then use the vaporetti to tour the Grand Canal. The food was of outstanding quality served by professional, friendly staff. Each meal was superb and inventive and the vegetarian dishes served to my daughter were imaginative and of equal standard to the non vegetarian - often vegetarians are fobbed off with omelettes! We were even lucky enough to have dry, sunny weather (if a bit chilly!). The lounge, deck and dining room were beautiful and the lounge had a selection of board games for those needing a rest from the touring and eating!

As a disabled traveller using a wheeled walking aid (and having a fit husband) I found Venice an excellent location but I would think for a wheelchair user the stepped bridges, with very few of them having an electric lift and none ever seeming to be in use, would be rather challenging.


Total Reviews: 13 Read More Reviews...