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Traveling Tips and Hacks when traveling to Italy on a budget Pt 2. Venice & Florence

Araceli V.

Ok bbs!

I'm back with part 2 of my traveling budget hacks for traveling within Italy. This one is going to be a little more packed since it includes a few of my favorite cities. 

You might be thinking why is this thrifted style fashion blogger talking about travel? Here's the thing I LOVE doing fun things like shopping + traveling but for {CHEAP} duh! Whether it's shopping/fashion or travel your girl is here to help you.

So let's get started!

Venezia (Venice), Italy

Venice is easily one of my favorite cities during our trip. Apart from being an entire photo-op at every corner, it's history and location is simply magical. It is expensive but I have a few tips and tricks that will help ease the cost a little traveling to this magical city. 

traveling to venice hacks

Traveling tips:

  • If you're into it look into staying at an AirBnB because hotels in this city are pretty pricey. We were lucky (thanks, hubby!) enough to stay at this super cute room that was really affordable. This room was basically a hotel room and has a great rooftop terrace for chillin + drinking wine. We found that it was central to all the places we wanted to visit. 
affordable airbnb in Venice, Italy
  • Bring comfy shoes! Venice isn't that big and there aren't any cars on the island so you will have to walk around to wherever you need to go. We walked from one end of city to the other and we didn't die so trust me, if we could do it, you can too. 
  • Get lost (day or night). There were a few times we genuinely got lost and it was so fun not to mention safe! There's very little crime in Venice. I promise you won't be disappointed finding hidden gems around the city. 

traveling to venice on a budget

Budget Hacks:

  •  I usually don't recommend tours but end up getting a 3 city tour (they offer a 10% off discount for a bundle of tours) with the Roman Guy in different cities (Underground Colosseum tour, Venice Express tour and a Walking Florence tour). We were not disappointed in the quality or value of the tours. At the end of our Venice tour we got to ride in a gondola and it was so surreal (this boat ride retails for 80 euros).

  • Check out the T Fondaco dei Tedeschi near the Rialto Bridge for a spectacular view of Venice and the Grand Canal. And get this it's completely FREE! Just remember to check in at the iPads near the elevators to get a reservation or else they won't let you go to the terrace. 

T Fondaco dei Tedeschi in Venice view

Things to do:

  • You must pay a visit to St. Marks square, it's absolutely breathtaking. Walk around the huge square and check out the gorgeous church with it's mosaics and city buildings. Drop dead GORGE. 

Restaurant Recs:

  • Light breakfast at Torefazione Cannaregio  a yummy and famous cafe. Grab a buttery croissant and a cappucino for 2 for under 5 euros. 
  • Aperitif and drinks at Al Timon like the locals, make sure to grab a table outside for front row seats to the best people watching. If you're feeling a little hungry, pick up a few of their appetizers (.60-1.50 euros) and a classic Aperol spritz (or two ;) for around 8 euros each.
  • If you're looking to munch on something semi-light, find this little whole in the wall restaurant called Fried Land that serves up the crispiest & tastiest fried Calamari. Yum!
  • For dinner we tried Osteria Al Bucco, it's a bit for away from all the mix but it's close to Al Timon. You guys need to try the Black Squid ink spaghetti, so delicious! Don't be afraid it tastes better than it looks. 

Travel Tips:

  • If you don't already use Google Maps, you should start. We found it one of the best tools while we were traveling, alot of travelers use it more than yelp for Restaurant reviews or attraction information.

Firenze (Florence), Italy

Ok, next up is Florence.. a second favorite! It has some of the best street food and hands down the BEST gelato ever.  Believe me, it was our mission to try gelato in every city and Florence has the best. Apart from the gelato, it also has a bustling city center and lots of cool things to do like the dreamy Gucci Garden's Museum.

traveling to Florence italy on a budget

Travel tips:

  • Rent a bike! Do what the locals do and bike around town. It was scary at first for me because the driving is a little crazy but it turned out to be so fun! Plus, it's a really good workout (to work off some of those pizza lbs). For just $35 for about 8 hours we rented two bikes and headed across town to check out an amazing view of Florence at the Piazzale Michelangelo. 
  • If possible try to stay close to the center of town to cut down on transportation costs. It also helps having an AirBnB to run to if jet lag sets in and you need a little cat nap. 

Budget hacks:

  • Save big by trying Florence's street food. During our time in Florence we only had two fancy sit down dinners and the rest were at local street food places. Most of the food was under $15 euros for two people and it was beyond good. The street food was bomb! Keep reading for all my restaurant recommendations you don't want to miss ;P
  • The David (one of the most famous statues, ever) is located in Florence at the Galleria dell'Accademia di Firenze. The Accademia can get pretty busy and run about 20 euros p/person without a guided tour. If you're interested in just checking out the David, save money by heading over to Palazzo Vecchio. Where you can see a replica statue along with dozens of other amazing statues for FREE. 
Statue of David Palazzio Vecchio
  • Check out the Comune di Firenze (Florence's City Hall) for some yummy FREE sparkling water from a fountain. It's on the side of the Cosimo I, de Medici statue Yes, I said sparkling water from a water fountain. It was amazing. It's the little things that make me really happy.
comune di firenze water fountain

Things to do:

  • If you're into fashion, head to the Gucci Garden's Museum + Restaurant. It's small but jam packed with amazing new and vintage Gucci collection items. Like I mentioned it's fairly small so it won't take up too much time to visit and a must do for the pictures alone. 
gucci gardens museum firenze italy

 

  • Get shopping! Check out the Mercato de Porcellino ( near the bronze boar) for handmade leather goods. Florence is known for their leather goods. They have handmade purses, jackets belts and so many more goodies. 

Restaurant Recs:

  • Perche, No! for hands-down the BEST gelato in Italy in my humble opinion. Trust me... It's perfectly made. Not too sugary and the best flavors. I'm actually dreaming about scarfing down a scone as I type. *sops up drool* I tried the lavender and pistachio (Jose's fave) and they were to die for. Light, creamy, just perfection!
  • All'Antico Vinaio OMG, where do I begin?! These sandwiches are what dreams are made of. Seriously! They are beyond delicious, they're made with fresh ingredients like handmade bread, the best cheeses and deli meats. We tried La Flavosa (salami, pecorino spread and eggplant) and L'Inferno (juicy porchetta, spicy eggplant and arugula). *sigh* These combos don't sound like much but they're amazing. Not to mention they are huge (you can split w/two ppl) and come in at 6 euros p/sammy.

We loved this place so much we bought some to-go to have lunch on the train and it was glorious! Don't be afraid of the line that's out the door, it goes pretty fast. Also, pay attention when ordering, they're busy and may miss you if you're not paying attention. 

  • Gusta Trippa Ok, try this place if you're feeling adventurous. They offer a local favorite called the Lampredotto sandwich which is essentially cow tripe. Hang on, don't click away. I promise this was so yummy. They prepare the filling by boiling the tripe and adding it to a soft bun along with spices. So delicous!

If you're not feeling adventurous, try the porchetta (roasted pork) sandwich, which is equally as yummy. It's a local favorite and not to be missed. We paid around $15 euros for two sandwiches and a coke, such a great deal for budget travelers. 

Phew, that took long enough! I hope these tips and hacks are useful to you when traveling through Venice and Florence. I will have memories from these cities very close to my heart. Have any questions about these locations? Leave me a question in the comments or hit me up on Instagram here.

Keep that wanderlust alive, babes!