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The unknown Venice: a “spooky” tour through the city!

Venice, in the Veneto region, is an acclaimed city all over the world! It is considered one of the most romantic cities in the world, but it also has a side that is little known by tourists – and somewhat “dark”, but full of magic. Shall we get to know more about it?

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The unknown Venice: a “spooky” tour through the city!

When we talk about Venice, we talk about one of the most romantic cities in the world! I don’t even need to say that, in addition to being romantic, the city is beautiful, full of charm, elegance and culture, but there is a little-known side of Venice, very interesting, and that’s what I’m going to present to you today! Shall we? Here at  Your Travel to Italy with Ana Patricia  you make the trip of your dreams !!! ALSO: see our  “Accommodation in Italy – Tips for your holidays!”.


Before our tour: watch this video about Venice!!


Our Introduction

Venice, in the Veneto region, is one of the most romantic cities in the world par excellence. The city is full of charm and offers unmissable attractions! However, the city also offers us a very different side from what we are used to seeing: Venice offers us many legends and stories of… Ghosts! How so? I will explain EVERYTHING now! Come with me!

Good to know…

People, Venice has MANY ghost stories, MANY! Of course, it’s not possible to gather them all in a single post, but there is a WONDERFUL tour that takes us to the discovery of some legends present in this text and many others! For those who like mystery, different tours, and ‘different’ stories: it’s a field day! Shall we take a look at some legends of Venice?

Anyone who knows Venice knows that the city seems to breathe love, but there are some legends that turn the city into a setting full of mystery and legends, and all of them are, let’s say, interesting! Today I’m going to tell you about two specific neighborhoods in the city: Cannaregio and Castello. The tour can be done all on foot and presents us with several historical nuances that are little known to people from outside the city. Also read What are the best coffee shops in Venice?

Important

The tour may follow different itineraries from those described in this post due to adverse weather conditions or changes in the tide; changes can happen WITHOUT PRIOR NOTICE, however the tour remains very interesting, with incredible stories and is very worthwhile for those looking for an alternative night tour in Venice.

1) The unknown Venice: a “spooky” tour through the city! CORTE DEL MILION

Let’s start with Cannaregio. One of the most iconic neighborhoods in the city hides some very mysterious stories. One of the most famous is that of Marco Polo’s wife. Marco Polo was a famous Venetian merchant born in the 13th century; on one of his explorations in China, he fell in love with one of the Emperor’s daughters and had his love returned.

It didn’t take long for them to get married and move to Venice. However, life is not a bed of roses: arriving in the city, she had to deal with Marco’s sisters who were not so friendly, as they had a touch of envy and jealousy of their brother’s wife.

In 1298, Marco Polo was captured by the Genoese and his sisters thought it would be the perfect situation to tell his wife that he had died so that she would return to China and “leave them alone”. In despair at the news, the princess set fire to her beloved’s clothes and, in a moment of madness, threw herself from one of the windows of the house where she lived: she died instantly! And for that reason, it is said that if you pass by the Corte del Milion at night, where the famous house is, you can see the silhouette of the young princess walking through the courtyard and singing Chinese songs in honor of her beloved husband.

2) The unknown Venice: a “spooky” tour through the city! CASINO OF THE SPIRITS

Another “haunted” place in the neighborhood is the famous Casino of the Spirits. There, in the 16th century, an important family in Venice decided that a casino would be an excellent investment. A small building was erected to house the establishment and, in the same place, they decided to reserve a space to hold literary meetings dedicated to art and culture. Although none of this seemed suspicious, there are those who say that the place was also used for religious rituals such as invocation of spirits and demons. It didn’t take long for the place to gain a reputation as a ‘place of evil’.

Century after century, the stories told only reinforced the idea that the place is indeed haunted – in fact: one of the most haunted in Venice! Some say they constantly see flashing lights, shadows and strange shapes. There are also several testimonies from people who say they hear screams, loud voices, music and screams coming from inside the building. It is worth remembering that in its heyday, the casino had a very specific audience, such as intellectuals and people of the Venetian high class; at the time they were called ‘chosen spirits’. This building overlooks Murano and you can only see it from the water, or from the Fondamenta nove – for reference: it’s close to the Church of the Madonna dell’Orto.

3) The unknown Venice: a “spooky” tour through the city! VENICE CASINO

Another haunted casino, I mean, very famous, is the Venice Casino. Located in the Loredan Vendramin Calergi Palace, it has a magnificent view of the Grand Canal and is, to this day, one of the most famous buildings in the city. In this place, in 1658, legend has it that a heinous crime took place that marked the history of the place forever.

This building belonged to the Calergi family and when their last male heir died, the palace became the property of his three nephews, who were his sister’s children. The nephews were from the Grimani family, on their father’s side, and they were at war with another important Venetian dynasty: Querini Stampalia. One night they decided to simply kidnap the enemy heir, Francesco, and take him to their palace, where they tortured him to death and, it is said, after he died he served as food for a tiger.

The near-perfect crime did not last long: the government discovered what happened and the three brothers were exiled. The wing of the building where the crime took place was demolished and gave way to the column of infamy, which “marks” the place of the event. Some say that, passing by at night, it is possible to hear evil laughter, roars of the tiger that would have devoured the victim and, of course, cries for help.

4) The unknown Venice: a “spooky” tour through the city! FONDACO DEI TEDESCHI and RIALTO BRIDGE

To close the list of Cannaregio and leave some stories for when you go on the tour, I will tell you the legend of the ghost of Fosco Loredan. It is said that in the second half of the 16th century, a man named Fosco Loredan lived in Venice and was married to Elena, niece of Doge Marino Grimani. On a night in 1598, the Loredan allegedly accused Elena, in front of her uncle, of treason and this would have triggered a colossal fight, as Grimani found it absurd that his niece’s honor was put in check. Continuing with the fight, the three reached Campiello Remèr, a few meters from the Fondaco dei Tedeschi and the Rialto bridge.

There, Loredan, blinded by rage, would have beheaded Elena. Faced with the scene, which aroused despair in Grimani, he ordered Loredan to carry his wife’s body and, with her head in his hands, he demanded that both of them go to Rome so that the Pope would give the murderer just punishment. It is said that they walked to the Holy See, took five months to get there and that, when they arrived, the Pope did not receive them, forcing them to return to Venice. On the way back, after thinking hard about what he had done, Loredan threw himself into the Grand Canal and drowned. It is said that anyone who passes through that area at night can hear Elena’s panicked screams and see Loredan’s ghost emerge from the waters with his wife’s head in his hands.

How about getting to know some legends of Castello?

Castello is another very famous (and very interesting!) neighborhood in Venice.

The church of Saints Paul and John

We start with one of the most famous legends of the neighborhood: the legend of the church of Saints Paul and John. It is, without a doubt, one of the most beautiful churches in Venice and it houses several funeral monuments; it is also known as the “Pantheon of the Doges” and, one of the legends of the Castello district, makes reference to one of these funeral monuments: that of the painter Melchiorre Lanza, inside the chapel of Maria Magdalene. represent Melancholy, but legend has it that it represents a very vain woman who, one day, when picking up the mirror, did not see her reflection, but that of an elderly woman, which would have killed her of “scare.” They say that the soul of this woman is “trapped” in this statue and that it is possible to hear her asking for help from anyone who passes by.

The tragic love story of Frederick Ferdinand of Habsburg

Impossible to talk about legends and ghosts and not mention a love story, right? Well, let’s talk about the tragic love story of Frederick Ferdinand of Habsburg. It is said that the Knights of Saint John, coming from Malta, built, in 1312, a shelter in Venice for pilgrims and believers on their way to the Holy Land.

After a few centuries of construction, due to the Napoleonic destruction, the Order of the Knights of Malta was forced to close its activities and the building was reused as a warehouse and popular accommodation. In 1842 the Archduke of Austria, Frederick Ferdinand of Habsburg, ordered works to improve the place, but he went personally to check everything and, in the meantime, fell in love with Maria Adelaide, 13 years his senior. In one night of love, she became pregnant and, from this love, Giuseppina was born. They were separated for political reasons and Frederick would have committed suicide holding in his hands a poem for his beloved. To avoid an even greater scandal, all traces of the child were lost, and it is said that, even today, during the night, we can hear cries, cries of despair, see figures and hear someone reciting a poem, even when the place is closed.

The Bienal Gardens

And last but not least, here is the legend of the Bienal Gardens. It all started in 1921, next to the statue of Garibaldi that is inside the gardens of the Venice Biennale. There, a very playful ghost ‘lives’: they say he wears a red shirt and pushes people and puts his foot to make them stumble. This ghost is said to be of Giuseppe Zolli, a soldier in Garibaldi’s troops, born in 1838, who swore to defend, at all costs, the Hero of the Two Worlds even after Garibaldi’s death. Today, there, you can therefore see two statues: that of Garibaldi and, behind, that of the soldier defending his master. At night, they say, we can hear Zolli swearing an oath to Garibaldi and laughing at people who, by chance, stumble when they pass by.

Gold Tip

  • If you speak Italian, there is a free tour of ‘Haunted Venice’ and you can find out all the details about this tour by clicking here!

Bonus

  • The Get Your Guide tour offered in this post also includes an underground tour of a crypt. People: it’s the icing on the cake! Lit by candles, in the crypt you can see several frescoes and skulls, yes! Skulls! Do you have courage? There is a kind of labyrinth and the stories told are hair-raising. It is worth it!

Are you going to stay in Venice? So you can get our exclusive hotel tips!

Here you will find great and free tips to not get fooled when choosing your hotel in Italy.

Plus: read our tips and advices about the Venice neighborhoods and where to stay! Here you will find the perfect hotel for you and for your needs, respecting you budget! Also: booking at booking.com, you will help us to keep our blog and for free! No fees, no click baits, no fake news!

Hotels I recommend in the San Marco area

San Marco is the most famous neighborhoods of Venice and, at some times of the year, it is difficult to walk around, because the city is crowded.

If you want to save money a great option is to stay in some B&B or rent an apartment; click on the links below and get to know each one. If you like the suggestion, make your reservation and guarantee good prices;)

If you prefer a good hotel, I have some options for hotels that I really like, click on the links below and get to know each one. If you like the suggestion, make your reservation and guarantee good prices;)

Do you like luxury accommodations? Are you on your honeymoon or celebrating something special? Then see some luxury accommodation options in the best area of Venice.

Hotels I recommend in Castello Area

Castello is the largest of all the “sestieri” (neighborhoods) and has an incredible waterside for good walks, in addition to being full of cafes, bars and shops. They are not cheap places to stay, but it facilitates access to the most famous tourist spots and, with that, saves on transportation, as it is possible to do everything on foot!

If you want to save, a great option is the B&B or an apartment, click on the links below and get to know each one. If you like the suggestion, make your reservation and guarantee good prices

If you prefer a good hotel, I have some options for hotels that I really like, click on the links below and get to know each one. If you like the suggestion make your reservation and guarantee good prices;)

Hotels I recommend in Cannaregio or Dorsoduro Area

If you want something calmer, choose Cannaregio or Dorsoduro; in the latter, the nightlife is particularly active, ideal for lovers of busy bars and places to have good drinks!

If you want to save a great option is the B&B or an apartment, click on the links below and get to know each one. If you like the suggestion, make your reservation and guarantee good prices;)

If you prefer a good hotel, I have some options for hotels that I really like, click on the links below and get to know each one. If you like the suggestion, make your reservation and guarantee good prices

Hotels I recommend in the San Polo Area

San Polo is ideal if you want something comfortable, close to some sights, but more modest. I think this neighborhood is a great position so I recommend it a lot.

If you want to save a great option is the B&B or an apartment, click on the links below and get to know each one. If you like the suggestion, make your reservation and guarantee good prices

If you prefer a good hotel, I have some options for hotels that I really like, click on the links below and get to know each one. If you like the suggestion, make your reservation and guarantee good prices;)

Hotels I recommend in the Santa Croce Area

Santa Croce is home to the important bus station in Piazzale Roma, which makes it very easy to get off the beaten track, including going to Santa Lucia if you want to make a stopover.

If you want to save a great option is the B&B or an apartment, click on the links below and get to know each one. If you like the suggestion, make your reservation and guarantee good prices

If you prefer a good hotel, I have some options for hotels that I really like, click on the links below and get to know each one. If you like the suggestion, make your reservation and guarantee good prices;)

Don’t want to stay on the island? No problems! Search for Mestre, Campalto or Favaro Veneto, which are the mainland cities of Venice and offer excellent accommodation options. A little further from Piazzale Roma, about 20 minutes by water transport, they do not have magnificent views from the bedroom windows, but it is ideal for those who want to save on accommodation.

Tips

  • The tip to save A LOT is to book your hotel in advance.
  • As we also mentioned: beware of excess baggage! It is very complicated to get around with large volumes in Venice because of the bridges, stairs and narrow streets.

Watch this video and discover what to do in 10 days in Italy!!

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Conclusion

The unknown Venice: a “spooky” tour through the city! If you like mystery and are looking for an alternative Venice tour: make sure you’ve found your ideal tour. It is worth remembering that the Get Your Guide tour is offered in English, Spanish, French and German.

Are you insecure?

And if you feel insecure, have no time, and need help to organize your trip,  don’t hesitate to contact me!  I will love to help you make your dream trip to Italy come true. And how can I do that? Keep reading this post until the end and you will understand how we make your life and your trip much easier.

Did my post help you?  If so, be sure to post your comment below, but if you still have questions just send me a message I will answer you as soon as possible!



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