There are so many attractions to visit in Venice that it would be best to stay in town at least for a long week-end. However, if you are only going to be in Venice for a day, you can still make the most of it making sure you visit the following places.
A classic itinerary can start from Piazzale Roma, the bus terminal. From here you can reach Campo Santa Margherita, one of the most popular places for spritz, and Campo San Barnaba, crossing the Ponte dei Pugni. The bridge has this name because it was a small battlefield suspended above the canal where there was a real war of fists between the inhabitants of Castello and those of Dorsoduro. Next to the bridge, there is the fruit and vegetable boat, a classic postcard of Venice.
Following the signs for San Marco and turning right you reach the “Squero di San Trovaso”, one of the few places where gondolas are built and repaired.
Next stop: Zattere with beautiful views of the Giudecca and so called because it was the landing shore of rafts for transporting timber from the mainland. At the church of the Gesuati, if you turn left you reach the Gallerie dell'Accademia where you can admire and understand the history of Venetian painting, if you have enough time. After you arrive at the Accademia bridge where you can admire a marvelous view of the Grand Canal.
By crossing the Accademia bridge you arrive in Campo Santo Stefano and from here you can take the little street on the left of the church of San Maurizio, thus arriving at the Fenice. From here, walking along the Frezzeria, an ancient road where arrows were made, you can visit the Bovolo staircase and reach Piazza San Marco in few minutes. This is probably one of the most beautiful squares in the world. Here, you will meet lots and lots of other fellow tourists!
Your itinerary can continue passing the Ponte della Paglia, with the beautiful view of the Bridge of Sighs, but also on the island of San Giorgio and the basin of San Marco. From here, along the most hidden streets of the sestiere of San Marco and Castello, you can reach the Campo di Santa Maria Formosa and, later, SS. Giovanni e Paolo, grandiose Gothic church, burial place of many doges.
From Ss. Giovanni e Paolo you arrive at the small church S. Maria dei Miracoli, a jewel of the early Renaissance and we follow the signs for Rialto, one of the symbols of the city, always crowded and from which you have a beautiful view of the Grand Canal.
You can quickly stop for a spritz with ciccheto here in one of the many “bacari” around Rialto and then follow the signs for Piazzale Roma, first making a trip to the nearby Pescheria with a nice view of the Ca' d'Oro.
Passing Campo San Polo you arrive at the Frari. Here, if you have time, there are two things to see: the inside of the Frari church and the Scuola di San Rocco with the paintings by Tintoretto.
Here your day trip to Venice ends. I hope you enjoyed it!