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Women Share Secrets About Venice


Woman-only hostel...
Cheap, safe sleeps in Venice! Take the vaporetto to Palanca stop (address: Giudecca 428), where you will find a wonderful women-only convent called, Istituto Canossiano. The nuns are sweet, gentle grandmotherly types and there is a kitchen, balcony, and laundry facility at visitors' disposal. We met other women travellers from all over the world. It was safe, comfortable and most memorable. P.S. Sheets and blankets were provided, no credit cards were accepted and doors closed at 10:00 P.M. The cost then was US$15 per night. Tel/fax 041 522 2157
Kiera, Ramey, USA

Advice from a local...
I can suggest a sort of nun "pensione", that works like an hotel. It's called Istituto Ciliota, it is near campo Santo Stefano (less than 10 minutes from San Marco) and is not so expensive and totally renewed. This former Venetian monastery was originally founded in 1845. Address: Calle delle Muneghe 2976, tel: 39 041 520488, fax: 39 0415212730. I believe a single room costs 60 Euro.
Daniela, Venice, Italy

Take a gondola ride...
A money saving tip! The American Express office offers hour-long serenade evening Gondola rides for a fraction of the cost of the gondola vendors on the docks. We ended up in the gondola with the accordion player -- there are 4-6 gondolas that go out together -- the gondoliers all sing. We boarded the gondola while light, and came back by night. Wonderful, wonderful, wonderful!
Denise, Schaumburg, USA

Great little hotel in Venice...
The Orion is a tiny 3 star hotel located within 2 minutes of St Marks Square. The rooms are small but comfortable and all open onto the hustle and bustle of the narrow streets of the city. A continental breakfast is included in the room rate that starts from US$85 for a single. A water taxi is the most exciting way to arrive from the airport\train and can be engaged just a short distance from the station entrance. The ferry is also very close to the railway entrance. They both drop off passengers at the steps at St Marks Square. A short walk (less than 5 minutes) will bring you to The Orion. I have stayed there three times but also many of my Australian friends and their friends have stayed there. It is a long way from Sydney to Venice so I was so pleased that the hotel did not disappoint anyone. Contact information: Hotel Orion, San Marco, Spadaria 700A. 30124, Tel: (39-41)522 3053, Fax: (39-41)523 8866, Website:
Robin, Sydney, Australia

Sandwiches near train station...
When I was researching my latest Italian guide, I came across Al Cicheto a tiny restaurant/bar that accepts cash only. This place in Venice serves fabulous fresh sandwiches and good homemade food. They cater to the workers and make just enough so that they run out of food every day. Calle Misercordia, 367 (exit the train station, turn left onto Lista Spagna. Calle Misercordia is the second left turn). Mon-Fri. 7:30 AM - 6:00 PM
Margo, Best Budget Hotels in Italy, California, USA


Solo experience in Venice...
I am a 58 year old woman who traveled solo to Venice and had a great time. I stayed at a B&B right around the corner from St Maria Del Salute Church and attended the mass honoring St Mary for saving the Venitians from the plague in the 1500's. I had lunch and dinner in the bars and the bartenders were all very friendly and it was fun to watch the locals as they met in the evenings with their friends. When I needed directions, everyone was super nice and once when I got lost, I just kept on walking and finally came full circle from where I'd started. A great vacation indeed!

I stayed at the B&B, Locanda Ca' Zose located in a restored 17th century building. It was right next to St Maria Del Salute Church in the Dorsoduro district (close to the vaporetta stop). It is modern, clean and the complimentary breakfast is very good. The en-suite bathrooms has tiled floors, heated towel rods, thick towels, a bidet and complimentary amenities. I felt very comfortable and safe there. Highly recommended!

P.S. There are a few floors in this B&B. The female proprietor carried my luggage up the stairs on check in and down on checkout. Address: 193/B (Calle del Bastion), Venice 30123, Italy near the Peggy Guggenheim Collection, just 100 meters from the local waterbus stop of Salute (you can see S. Mark Square across the water) Rates: 95 euro per night. Website:
Maryann, Texas, USA


Women's words about Venice...

Venice is a wondrous city of fairest carving,
reflected in gleaming waters
swirled to new patterning by every passing gondola.
(Sylvia Pankhurst, writer,1979)

It is the city of mirrors, the city of mirages,
at once solid and liquid, at once air and stone.
(Erica Jong, New York Times Magazine, 1986)

The trouble is, walking in Venice becomes compulsive once you start.
Just over the next bridge, you say, and then the next one beckons.
(Daphne du Marier, Don't Look Now, 1971)

Venice, as a city, was a foundling, floating upon the waters
like Moses in his basket among the bulrushes.
(Mary McCarthy, Venice Observed, 1956)

Immersed in Italian culture...

I like long flights to foreign destinations. I use that time to slip into the role of visitor, traveller, tourist and foreigner. I seldom rest -- I'm preoccupied with observing interactions between people, getting used to the melody of a new language and testing the tastes that come with this new territory. It is Cultural Immersion 101.

The return flight is always slightly different. Then I am of two minds -- holding on to the romance of the foreign culture while looking forward to being home surrounded by what my soul truly understands.

I recently flew Alitalia between Toronto and Milan and my diary is filled with scribbles about my inflight observations. I will reread these thoughts before my next flight to Venice in the fall. This 'looking back' always helps me get into the mood for my next immersion. It also reminds me that I better start calorie counting a week before my Alitalia departure. Not to do that would be reckless -- my notes are filled with all the Italian goodies I readily consummed on board -- red wine, pasta, pizza, Bel Paese cheese and a special afternoon treat of ice cream. Ah, Italian culture...
(Source: Evelyn Hannon, Editor)

Back to GirlTalk Italy...

The articles in GIRLTALK Italy have been independently researched by Journeywoman Online. We thank the Italian Government Tourist Board and Air France for sponsoring this female-friendly information. Together it is our aim to inspire women to visit Italy and to travel safely and well.

P.S. Did you know that Charles-de-Gaulle's airport in Paris is Air France's hub? And from Paris, Air France can connect you to 10 Italian cities!

Italian Tourist Board
Air France







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