One of the best things to do when you’re visiting Venice is taking a day trip to Burano. This beautiful little island is famous for it’s colourful fisherman’s houses and it’s laid back restaurants where you’ll eat seafood fresh from the lagoon. Burano in my opinion is definitely worth the day trip when you’re in Venice. It is the perfect destination to add to your Venice itinerary and you will only need half a day to see the most important sights.
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The Best Day Trip from Venice – One Day in Burano
How to get to Burano from Venice
The actual distance between Venice and Burano is only 9km. However if you wish to go by car it’s around 62km driving. The easiest way to reach Burano is to take Vaporetto number 12 from Fondamenta Nove (in Cannaregio). It departs every 30 minutes and first makes a stop at Murano before arriving to Burano.
If you are not staying in this area you can easily take another Vaporetto that is headed for Murano and transfer on the island itself to number 12 that will take you then to Burano. If you go for the second option you need to walk through Murano to get to the right stop next to the lighthouse tower (Murano Faro), otherwise you could be waiting there for quite some time.
The ride takes around 45 minutes but along the way you will pass the cemetery island of San Michele, Murano, Torcello and small islands in the lagoon. Not to forget the view you get from Venice when departing is absolutely incredible.
The price for the Vaporetto is 6,50 euro per person each way. Or you can decide on a day ticket for 18 euros if you wish to visit the other islands as well.
What is Burano famous for?
Coloured houses of Burano
The island of Burano is most famous for its coloured fisherman’s houses. I can promise you, once you set foot on Burano you’ll feel like you’re walking through an actual rainbow. The houses keep their vibrant colours and are repainted every 2 years.
Families used to paint their homes in bright colours to designate where their family’s quarters ended and a neighbour’s began, as well as to make their homes more visible from the sea. The only rule is that they can’t paint their house in the same colour as the one next to it. If people wanted to paint their house a certain colour they first had to file an application with the local community government.
One of Burano’s specialities is the fabrication of lace. In the 16th century, the women of Burano started stitching lace. Did you know it can take up to a month to finish one single tablecloth? That’s because every woman specialises in one single stitch. Since there are seven different stitches in total, each piece was passed on from woman to woman to finish.
Nowadays most of the lace that is being sold on the island is made by machine. But there are still some shops where you can catch a glimpse of the old traditions. La Perla, for instance, a lace shop on the main street offers this option. Women are often stationed inside, stitching away, so you can even see how it’s done.
Delicious Sea Food
One of the other things you have to do on a day trip to Burano is try the delicious seafood! You will eat better on Burano than in any other place in Venice.
Burano is a working fisherman’s island where you can get super fresh seafood for a fraction of the price of what it would cost you on the other side of the lagoon in Venice.
We chose for the restaurant Riva Rosa which was absolutely amazing. As a starter we opted for a mix of all different seafood and for the main course I went a little on the daring side and went for the tagliatelle with squid and ink sauce. Needless to say it was amazing! You can also opt for a gelato of course if you don’t feel that hungry.
Things to do on a day trip to Burano
Visit the coloured houses of Burano
Sight seeing all the different coloured houses is the most fun thing to do on a day trip to Burano. While the main street with it’s canal is beautiful, don’t forget to wander off into the little streets as well. Especially during the Summer months the main street can get very crowded after 10am.
Buy real Burano Lace
Via Galuppi is the main street in Burano and it’s lined with bars, restaurants and cute shops. If you’re looking to buy some Burano lace you will find most of the shops here. One things you have to look out for are the lace tourist traps. A lot of stores actually sell fake Burano lace that is actually made in China. Be aware of any lace that costs less than $50! Real Burano lace takes a really long time to make. A small piece of lace can even take up to two weeks to finish! And for instance a tablecloth can even take up to an entire year and will be around $500.
Visit the Museo del Merletto
The Lace Museum is located at the historic palace of Podestà of Torcello in Burano which is located in the middle of the island and can hardly be missed. From 1872 until 1970 this palace used to be home to the Burano Lace School. In this part of the museum you can see how the older and local women of Burano do their craft.
Opening hours – 10am to 5pm
Ticket Price – €3.50
You can also use the Venetian ‘Museum Pass’ for €40. This pass will grant you access to 10 beautiful museums such as Doge’s Palace, Correr Museum, the Archaeological Museum and Monumental Rooms of the Marciana Library. But it’s most impressive feature is that with this pass you can skip the line!
A third option is to go for the combination ticket of €12 that allows you to visit the Burano Lace Museum and the Murano Glass Museum.
Take photos of the Chiesa San Martino
Did you know that not only Pisa has it’s leaning tower? No, you read that right! Burano also has it’s own leaning bell tower! The height of the Burano’s tower is 53 meter and it has an incline of 1.82 meters. The best location to admire the Burano’s leaning bell tower is the Terranova’s marble bridge or the Giudecca’s street.
As you can see it’s totally worth it to take a day trip from Venice to Burano! It’s the perfect way to escape the crowds in Venice and by the time you arrive back most of the day tourists in Venice will have left!
Have fun on your day trip in Burano!