Piazza San Marco, Venice
We just took a stroll through Piazza San Marco one evening and enjoyed the terrific music being played at a couple of the Cafe's. From classical to jazz, the talented musicians are playing tunes to entertain the clientele and you can enjoy it too.
You can stop and grab a drink and listen or you can just stroll along and enjoy it.
One must make time in the evening to pass by and linger in Piazza San Marco. Through clever illumination, the atmosphere is made magical and the monuments are rendered glorious. Many cafés along the Piazza set up outdoor tables, so if the weather is clement, a drink under the sparkle of the lights is unforgettable. If not, then a stroll through and a few photos will have to suffice. Attached are my photos.
Live music live singing Italian wine & food, pure magic!
What made it for us was that as we sang it was obvious someone had a voice.
Two people in our group turned out to be amateur opera singers and they did a turn.
It was wonderful. Even the Italians loved it.
Dress Code: Smart tidy shirt and tie back in 1973.
The shops and attractions are closed by 7pm.. most close earlier. So when the sun sets.. it's time to just relax and enjoy the venetian ambience. Of course i couldn't afford a cup of anything at any of the cafes at the piazza.. so i juz sat on of those platforms used during the aquas alte (high water).
It was nice and relaxing.. till it got too chilly.
At carnival time, whether you're in costume or not it's great to wander around and around in St Marks Square and mingle with all the other folks.
We met this particularly charming looking Italian gentleman who stole our hearts with his smile and said a soft, quiet "Ciao" as he strode by. He probably thought we were lunatics giggling like schoolgirls as I had my picture taken next to him in my Harry Potter outfit! He did look rather bemused by it all the poor fella....
Get talking to people, have your picture taken with them, stand and watch the people in the Florian Cafe in costume - or better yet, get in costume yourself.
Dress Code: Smart dress or costume if you are planning to go in the Florian. Otherwise, wear whatever takes your fancy.
It's so refreshing to be in St. Marks Square or Piazza San Marco at night after the Day Trippers are gone....It's mysterious, romantic, dream-like.
One night as Allan and I were walking after dinner, we went to the square where the "Dueling Orchestras" were playing. There were a few couples, some street artists, and the musicians...so we slow danced for just a few minutes. It was quite lovely. Being the romantic that I am, it is a fond memory of Venice.
We took pictures, but it did not work well. I'll try the picture we have of the orchestra playing/ the street artist displaying his wares.
Dress Code: There is no dress code. Just be with someone you love.
You can't just do a day trip to Venice, when it is crawling with other people just doing a day trip (or all those cruise people). Stay the night, and wander through the streets to San Marco square where the musicians from the cafes play great music. It's a fabulous atmosphere not to be missed. You don't even have to pay the expensive sitting fee at the tables at the cafe -- just stand in the background with groups of other tourists. You can even dance with your travel partner, or by yourself.
Dress Code: No dress code -- just casual. Maybe bring a sweater in case it gets a bit chilly.
It is wonderful to see Venice by night. A lot of beautiful buildings have lots of lights, like the Piazza San Marco you can see in this picture. I've never seen a city more beautiful at night than Venice.
It is unlikely that any visitor to Venice will miss Piazza San Marco, arguably the most famous square in Europe. The history and architecture of the "drawing room of Europe" is well documented. Daytime visitors will take away memories of an exciting environment filled with people from all over the world, street vendors of all sorts and, of course, the pigeons. But, limiting your visit to the daytime will not complete your experience.
Nighttime is when the magic comes alive. Gone is the hustle and bustle, replaced with romance. The square becomes aglow with lights from under the colonnades and from every column and pilaster. Music can be heard from every corner. The night mutes the visual details to a nearly sepia tone while the textures of the surrounding buildings and the patterns of the pavers reveal themselves.
Strolling through the piazza I suddenly become aware of my footfalls. I feel as though Carol and I are alone in our experience. There are still many others around us but the pace is slower, their voices are lower and they all feel the same as me.
Wander about Piazza San Marco on your way to another night time destination and the sweet tunes of Vivaldi, Mozart, and Strauss waft through the air. Quartets hired by the restaurants on the square compete for attention. as soon as one group finishes a piece the quartet on the other side of the square starts their set.
Dress Code: Come as you are
The most enjoyable time I had in Venice was night time in San Marco square. It is busy with lots of activities. Lots of music, restaurants, bars, vendors, gondoliers singing....Lots of charm and just as wonderful as you would expect. The piazza is huge and there is something for everyone. Be sure to just start walking around the alleys and streets and experience the shops, restaurants, etc. Getting lost is half the adventure.
In Piazetta San Marco there is a coffee bar which has a pianist playing in the evenings - you pay something ridiculous like 7 euros for an expresso but it's worth it.
Alternativelly just seat on the steps nearby and listen for free...
Dress Code: I thought I was going to see many well dressed people here but no, only tourists wearing normal holiday shorts and t-shirts...
Good for an hour or so worth of diversion one night, get a chuckle from the dueling orchestras on Piazza San Marco at night.
Battle of the bands Venetian style. A little corny but actually kind of funny, as the musicians were pretty good and would get very comical at times. Everybody usually ends up checking it out once, and I liked it.
It is free if you stand and wander back & forth between the orchestras. You pay Venice prices for drinks if you sit down.
Let the twilight hypnotise you into a Venetian trance. There are plenty of people to watch while comfortably seated at the many restaurants that will serve your food to you right on the Piazza. There are often quartets that play pieces for you as you dine. If you don't happen to be right in front of one of the orchestras, don't worry because you can hear the melodious tones reverberate throughout the Piazza.
At night you can listen to orchestras playing classical music all around St Marks' Square. You don't necessarily have to have a drink in one of the cafes, many people just stand and watch. There were about 5 different groups to watch when I was there. The square is beautifully lit up at night as well.