Il Burchiello e la Crociera fluviale lungo il Brenta


“…Musa, cantiam del padovan Burchiello
La deliziosa, comoda vettura,
In cui per Brenta viaggiasi bel bello,
Dal gel difesi e dall’estiva arsura.
Amistà si contrae con questo e quello,
E alla curiosità si dà pastura;
Passasi con placer di loco in loco,
E per lungo cammin si spende poco…” Carlo Goldoni (da Il Burchiello di Padova)
[...Sing oh Muse, of Padua's Burchiello / the charming and pleasant transport / that makes cruising the Brenta so delightful / well-protected from both winter cold and summer heat. / Friendship blossoms among on-board companions / and curiosity is fed;/ from place to place, on our long and pleasing journey / on the cheap we sail...]

In ancient times the Brenta canal used to be the main waterway linking Padua and Venice and every day the Burchiello, the original barge at times also pulled by horses along the banks, was the main means of transport for local residents.
Nowadays, visitors can relax in the nice and warm Italian weather from April to October and enjoy the natural beauty of the Venetian mainland and its cultural heritage while sailing along the river.


Different companies run 1-day-long cruises setting off from Padua to Venice and vice versa on alternate days. Slowly, the boats sail along the river and follow the natural rhythm of the waves.
Along the route they pass through several locks and bridges, which still need to be lifted manually.
The ports of call of the cruise are the major Venetian villas where visitors can take advantage of guided tours to discover the treasures of the Venetian nobility.
Sometimes lunch is served on-board or at selected restaurants.

Details and timetables will be made available on occasion. Lunch not included. Tickets to villas included. Multilingual guide. The special package is available from March to October.


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Dalla Riviera del Brenta al Lido di Venezia


In a few minutes drive you will get from Hotel Villa Gasparini the Terminal Fusina, where the Brenta River meets the Venice Lagoon.

From Terminal Fusina you will ship to Venice and its beach,the Lido. Terminal Fusina grants a fast, punctual and cheap public service (€uro 12 go and return).

In 40 minutes you will get off at Alberoni Beach, wild and still unknown.. and you’ll love its crystalline water.

A natural landscape where you will relax following the slow rhythm of the waves.

One day at seaside is the right break during a holiday dedicated to the artistic beauties of the Brenta Riviera, Venice and Padua.


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Itinerari naturalistici: la laguna sud di Venezia

Imagine visiting the southern lagoon aboard a boat, accompanied by a naturalist guide : an exciting experience which will make you discover a very delicate ecosystem.
The guides, who will accompany you on this tour through the lagoon environment, have technical, scientific and ethnographic skills, in order to make your tour educationally interesting and unforgettable.
They’ll take you by boat and on foot to places of rare beauty and absolute silence, where you’ll certainly feel in harmony with natural environment, which once used to be all around us.
Peacefulness, nature, flora and fauna, allow you to completely turn-off your mind, relax from everyday stress and live a healthy unique experience.

All these lagoon places are almost unexplored and unpolluted, a sort of inaccessible spots: they’ll make you feel profound sensations which are positive both for your body and your mind.
The Venetian lagoon is in the middle of one of the main flyaways between Europe and Africa, an important wet land where water birds from the north of Europe spend their winter. You can also do birdwatching and observe the flora which adapted to the salty environment.

It’s a lagoon world between sky and water, where fishing is the most popular activity: it’s not uncommon to see fishing boats, nets and above all the famous fishing lodges, a unique example of Venetian lagoon architecture. The expert guides will also tell you some legends about these places, made of nature, fishing and shooting.


Itinerary “Laguna Sud” – full day – blue route:·
Meeting at Valle Cornio-Lova in Campagna Lupia at 9.00/9.15 p.m. – Departure at 9.30 a.m. – Return at 5.30/6.00 p.m.
Departures are from the canal of Cornio, an ancient branch of the river Brenta, a privileged observation post for several species of birds.
Navigating through the swamps you’ll get to Valle Zappa’s fishing house, the first leg of the tour where you’ll learn some fishing techniques.

Then, from the “valle” you’ll get to the second leg, the beach of Pellestrina, where you’ll have lunch.

Slowly, through mussel farms and dolphins, the boat will return towards the southern lagoon swamps.
You’ll get to the swamps area again and there, after a pause* at the Valle Zappa’s shooting lodge, you’ll be taken back to the point of departure.

The described route may be covered both clockwise or anticlockwise, depending on the tide.

*The pause at Valle Zappa’s shooting lodge depends on the possible presence of other guests.

Prices: € 33,00 adults – € 25,00 children from the age of 6 to 12, free from the age of 0 to 5.
The prices include the boat transport and the nature guide; they refer to the departure from Valle Cornio.

Itinerary “Valli da pesca” (fishing swamps) – half day – orange route:
Meeting at Valle Cornio-Lova in Campagna Lupia at 8.45 a.m. – Departure at 9.00 a.m. – Return at 1 p.m.
· Meeting at Valle Cornio-Lova in Campagna Lupia at 2.15 p.m. – Departure at 2.30 p.m. – Return at 6.30 p.m.

You’ll navigate along the river Cornio, where you can watch several species of birds.
You can also admire the beautiful and unusual Valle Zappa’s shooting lodge and, a bit further on, the ancient Padovana tower of Valle Figheri, the ruins of Prime Poste and Millecampi’s lodges.

The tour will stop at a fishing swamp to see the facilities used for fish farming.
Prices: € 25,00 adults – € 18,00 children from the age of 6 to 12.
The prices include the boat transport, the crew and the nature guide; they refer to the departure from Valle Cornio.
The tours leave from Valle Cornio’s agency’s office, in Lova di Campagna Lupia, on the state road S.S. Romea 309 (E55), which links Venezia/Mestre to Chioggia/Ravenna, at the Kilometric sign 110.

How to get to Valle Cornio:

For those coming from Venezia/Mestre the access to Valle Cornio is on the left, 2 km after the exit to Lugo.

From Venice you can reach the agency by the ACTV public transport, suburban bus route No 80, stop at Valle Cornio on request.

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Itinerari medievali in provincia di Padova: le città murate

In the area which spreads south-west of Padua, along the main roads, are the walled towns Monselice, Este, Montagnana and, towards north, Cittadella.

The tour winds through these “embattled” cities, at a short distance the one from the other: a tour that is unique of its kind.

An alternative to the usual tours through the Venetian towns, which includes castles and villages surrounded with high defensive walls, which were built during the Middle Ages. Perfectly preserved vestiges of a glorious past, made of battles, victories, defeats and several dominations.

The medieval era was deeply marked by the Seignories’ fights: the towns defended against the enemy’s assault closing up in their powerful walls. Great historical signs from a period of austerity, at the same time fascinating and mysterious, the Middle Ages.

Monselice and the Fortress Tournament

The Fortress Tournament, on the third Sunday of September, recalls the days when the emperor Frederick II lived in Monselice, involving people in games and festivities which citizens and tourists still enjoy. It’s a period during which the Commune’s districts and hamlets challenge each other in competitions such as: the chess tournament (human chess final competition), the musicians’ tournament (tambourines and clarions), flag-wavers, the grindstones’ competition, the nine contradas’ parade in period costume and the equestrian parade (quintana).
Info: IAT Monselice tel. 0429 783026


In the Middle Ages it was one of the main fortified centres for the control over the territory. The remains of its mighty castle are preserved : it was built between 1338 and 1339 by Ubertino da Carrara and it was surrounded with a 1000m long wall, decorated with 12 towers, which now encloses the public gardens.
Info: IAT Este tel 0429 600462




It is one of the most beautiful Italian walled towns and it preserves its almost perfectly intact medieval walls, which winds along two kilometres and encloses the city centre.
The mighty embattled wall is strengthened with 24 hexagonal towers and powerful castles.
Every year, on the first Sunday of September, the Palio ceremony takes place around the walls, a rite between history and fable: the race is between the ten communities of the ancient Sculdascia – an ancient name for the surroundings of Montagnana – and it is run by ten jockeys, whose ability, strength and intelligence are indispensable to win this exciting and fantastic trial.
During the interval between the races you can assist at the Gonfalons Competition: this race is run by confaloniers from the ten municipalities on the same route used for the horse race. It’s a terrible race, in which the racers make a huge effort to run and hoist their gonfalons like sails for about 700m.
Immediately after the gonfaloniers’ race and a short flag-waving performance, the horses come on stage again for the most awaited and spectacular competition: the Palio race. The best five horses will compete: they’re entrusted with one year hope and intentions.
But the Palio isn’t but a race: the event ends at midnight with the the tower’s firing.
The Rocca degli Alberi is set on fire to recall Ezzelino setting Montagnana on fire in the 13th century: the Palio was created as a consequence of that defeat and of the following rebellion. Nowadays it continues being a lively and exciting festival.
Info: IAT Montagnana tel 0429 81320


The fourth walled town, Cittadella, stands about 30km north of Padua. It’s an extraordinary example of a European walled village on the plain, meant to be of elliptical perimeter since its origin: Cittadella preserves its walls intact. It was for a long time the strategic defensive outpost, built to protect Padua against the attacks from the north.
The walled curtain communicates with the outside through four bridges by the gates (built on the four cardinal points), turned towards the near towns Padua, Vicenza, Bassano del Grappa and Treviso: a city for each cardinal point.
It’s also possible to have a walk on the town wall.
Info: IAT Cittadella tel 049 9404485


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Marostica : Partita a scacchi a personaggi viventi




Famous folk show with an historical setting which takes place on the second weekend of September of the even years.

An amazing choreography with colours and costumes of the XV century: more than 500 among ladies and knights, gentlemen and guardians of the castle, throwers and fire-eater to live again the spell of long time ago, a time made of cruel challenges but also of respectful chivalry and elegance.

The traditional recollection seems to be born from a story about two competitors and the beautiful Lionora, the castle owner’s daughter: the competitors wanted to challenge each other in a duel in order to decide who would have been the winner; but the Serenissima Republic laws forbidden it and the castle’s owner did not want to antagonize anybody.

It was wisely decided to make the challenge less bloody and the second Sunday of September of that distant 1454 the “duel” began with a “partita del nobil ziogo de li scacchi”.

The winner could marry the young bride.

The match takes place, every even year, at Marostica’s place, paved as a chessboard and ready to enliven itself for this spectacular and singular duel.

Show dates: second weekend of September in the even years.
Info and reservations: Associazione Pro Marostica c/o Castello Inferiore.
Tel. +39 0424 72127 – 470995 – Fax +39 0424 / 72800
Comune di Marostica – Ufficio Turismo tel. 0424 / 479128

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Itinerari a Padova: La Cappella degli Scrovegni




In Piazza Eremitani, in Padua, are located the Musei Civici which means Museo Archeologico and Museo d’Arte Medioevale e Moderna . The Cappella degli Scrovegni is also part of the complex.
This is definetely the ideal spot to start discovering Padua, following its Classical tour.

The Cappella degli Scrovegni is located in the historical heart of Padua and hosts Giotto’s most famous frescoes line dating back to the beginning of XIV century.
The Cappella degli Scrovegni is one of the main works of the Italian and European painting art and is considered the widest frescoes line of the tuscan Maestro.
The walls are fully covered with scenes that introduce us to the Virgin and Christ lifes, while on the counter façade appears the Last Judgment, conclusion of human salvation process.
Colour and light to represent man and God, poetry and pathos.
Humanity and faith seen through frescoes illustrating the Virgin and Christ.

Tickets must be required at least 1 hour before the visit starts.

Opening hours for Cappella degli Scrovegni
All year through from 09.00 am to 07.00 pm
Evening Visits: from March 1st, 2010 on. On Mondays, visit only on public holidays.
Last evening tour starts at 21.40 at CTA and ends at 22.20 exiting the Cappella.

Every eveing, from 19.00 to 22.00
Day visits (20 minutes) in:
From June 16 to 30
From December 16 to 31
La Cappella degli Scrovegni is closed on :
December 26
New Year
Pre-sale is compulsory. Only settlement through credit card allows to buy tickets until the day before the visit.
Any other settlement system implies that booking must be registered latest 3 working days before the visit, which excludes the booking day as well as the visit day.
Example : booking on MONDAY to ensure visit on FRIDAY.


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MUSEUM PASS: biglietto cumulativo per il tour dei Musei Civici Veneziani



The MUSEUM PASS is the cumulative ticket for all the Civic Museums currently open and for those connected.
This Ticket is valid for 6 months and grant only one admission to each Museum

The price is definetely excellent :

Full price ticket : 18.00 euro
Reduced price tiket : 12.00 euro

Families special offer:
Families (2 adults + at least 1 kid (age 6-18) pay 1 full price ticket + reduced price tickets for all other family members.

MUSEUMS concerned

Palazzo Ducale
Museo Correr
Museo Archeologico Nazionale
Sale Monumentali della Biblioteca Nazionale Marciana.
Ca’ Rezzonico, Museo del Settecento Veneziano
Casa di Carlo Goldoni
Museo di Palazzo Mocenigo e Centro Studi di Storia del Tessuto e del Costume
Ca’ Pesaro
Galleria Internazionale D’Arte Moderna + Museo D’Arte Orientale
Museo del vetro – Murano
Museo del Merletto – Burano (Opening in Octobre 2010 after renevation works)
Museo di Storia Naturale

for more details see :

On-line sales :

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Le ville principali della Riviera del Brenta

Villa Foscarini Rossi

1 / 2, Doge Pisani street, Stra
Tel 049/9801091
From April to October
On Monday 9 a.m. – 12.30 a.m.; 2 p.m. – 6 p.m.
On Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday 9 a.m. – 12.30 a.m.; 2 p.m. – 6 p.m.
On Saturday 2 p.m. – 6 p.m. (guided tours)
On Sunday and holidays 2 p.m. – 6 p.m.
Easter Monday, April 25 , May 1, June 2: open
August 15 and Sundays in August: closed
In January, February, March, November and December: from Monday to Friday: 9 a.m. – 1 p.m.
On Saturday, Sunday and holidays: closed
Closed from Christmas to Epiphany

Villa Nazionale Pisani

In Strà the visitor finds the grandest villa of the Riviera. The Villa Pisani, also called la Nazionale.
Commissioned by the family Pisani, it was erected to glorify the ascent of Alvise, when he was elected Doge, the highest political office in Venice.
The extensive park features groups of sculptures and numerous buildings, but it also guards one of the rarest jewels of 18th century landscape gardening, the evergreen labyrinth.
7, Doge Pisani street, Stra
Tel 049/502074
From April to September 9 a.m. – 7 p.m.
From October to March 9 a.m. – 4 p.m.
Closed: Mondays, May 1, Christmas, New Year’s Day.

The maze is open from April to September
9 a.m. – 1:30 p.m.; 2:15 p.m. – 7:15 p.m.,
except for maintenance or bad weather

Villa Badoer Fattoretto “Museo del Villano”

2, Tito street, Dolo
Tel 041/410113
The villa is open every Sunday and on holidays in April, May, June, September and October, visits at 3 p.m., 4:30 p.m. and 6 p.m. – Tel. 347 8243292

Barchessa Valmarana

In Mira, in the 17th century, the Valmarana family built a villa with two L-shaped barchesse (colonnaded wings). The impact of this architectural complex on visitors, as they walked up the large riverside gardens to the house and the imposing portico of the two wings was very powerful. The villa also had an extensive park in the back.
18th century frescoes depicting allegorical scene attributed to the Tiepolo school adorn the rooms.
11, Valmarana street, Mira
Tel 041/4266387
Or mobile phone 349/3977690
Open from March to October: 10 a.m. – 6 p.m.
Closed on Monday
The rest of the year by appointment

Villa Widmann

In front, Villa Widmann , originally built in the early 18th century for the Sceriman family, Venetian nobles of Persian origin, and refurbished by the Widmann family in the French rococo style.
420, Nazionale street, Mira
Tel 041/424973
In March, April and October 10 a.m. – 5 p.m.
From May to September: 10 a.m. – 6 p.m.
Closed on working Mondays.
From November to February: open only at the week-end and on holidays: 10 a.m. – 5 p.m.

Villa Foscari – La Malcontenta

Malcontenta is the last village the traveller will meet along the Brenta river before entering Venice, a small cluster of houses almost dwarfed by the imposing Villa by the same name built by Palladio around 1560 for the Foscari family.

9, Dei Turisti street, Malcontenta di Mira
Tel 041/5470012
From May to October, open on Tuesdays and Saturdays 9 a.m. – 12 a.m.
On the other days: groups only, by appointment (except on Monday)
Closed from November to April

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Non un aperitivo ma l'aperitivo: lo Spritz!




It’s the most popular drink in the Triveneto area and the cities of Venice, Padua and Treviso have been celebrating with this traditional aperitif for over a century.
Spritz, spriss and also sprisseto…more than just a cocktail, is a real ritual for both the young and the old enjoying a break between work and dinnertime.

But what is it, exactly?

There isn’t a single recipe, the ingredients can slightly change from province to province, from town to town, and also from barman to barman. In the time of the Habsburg rule in Northern Italy, the original formula was that of a glass of white wine diluted with a bit of water. However, it didn’t take long for the wine to be mixed with liquors and bitters, like Aperol, Campari and Select, which all shared a red nuance.

Now Spritz is made of white wine (Prosecco wine in Veneto), sparkling water or soda water, Aperol (or other liquors), ice, a slice of lemon or orange, and an olive. During the Spritz hour some rich, delicious appetizers are served, mainly typical products like cheese, sliced cold meat, grilled vegetables and fish.

Have your first Spritz at the hotel and then go pub-crawling at the local wine bars bacari and osterie – and trattorias where you can experience the great wine tradition of the Veneto with sprisseti, ombrette (glasses of wine) and cicchetti (small snacks).

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Tra Venezia e Padova



Hotel Villa Gasparini is in the centre of Riviera del Brenta, halfway both from Venice and Padua.
Because of its position, it’s an excellent base for visiting the nearby art cities: you can reach them easily by public transport.


Venice, the most romantic city in the world and lies a few minutes from Hotel Villa Gasparini.

You can easily get to the city by bus: it drives you directly from the hotel to Piazzale Roma, the old town centre terminal.

Trips are frequent, until midnight during the winter and over in the warm summer evenings, when it’s nice to enjoy the evening breeze while walking (and sometimes losing) in Venice “calles” and squares.

From Piazzale Roma then you’ll be immersed in something unique and magical, a place where streets are made of water and cars are replaced by boats.

Going towards the Canal Grande you’ll find lots of water bus stops: these special buses will guide you to Piazza San Marco through the Canal Grande, or to the isles: Murano, Burano and Torcello.

A few kilometres from the Hotel Villa Gasparini there’s also the Terminal Fusina, a pleasant place where the river Brenta flows into the lagoon of Venice.
The salty air and the beautiful, though short, walk along the lagoon, is an enjoyable anticipation of the city you’re going to visit.
At Terminal Fusina parking is easy and also cheap: no traffic jams will spoil your day!

The boats’ departures timetable is available at the reception and the ticket costs as much as a public service one.
But only tickets can be defined public, because crossing the lagoon and getting to Venice through the Canale della Giudecca sounds like a private tour, something special and unique.

You’ll get to San Marco (more precisely to Zattere) by boat in just 20 minutes.

In summer the last return boat is at 22.30, a late night sight you won’t forget easily.

Venice is a romantic and melancholic city in its less touristic quarters (Cannaregio and Castello), lively and “boisterous” at its markets (the most famous is the fish market of Rialto), exclusive and elegant in Piazza San Marco with its luxury shops near Mercerie.

But everywhere it’s always as ever unique.


Padua is also just a few minutes by bus from the Hotel Villa Gasparini, the last stop’s Piazzale Boschetti, the terminal of Padua: from here it takes ten minutes by foot to the city centre.

Padua is a city of erudite men, it has a long historical university tradition and its places are full of young students. It’s also the city of Giotto, whose works are at the Scrovegni Chapel, and of Saint Anthony’s basilica, where are kept the famous saint’s remains: this building has become the destination of thousands of pilgrims from around the world.

The Hotel Villa Gasparini represents an ideal base for visiting Venice and Padua, but not only.

In fact the villa is also convenient to reach the Venice Lido, for a summer break at the beach, to get to the Euganean Thermal Baths or the hilly surroundings of Padua with their walled towns of Monselice, Este and Montagnana.

From the hotel it also takes just a few minutes to: Vicenza and Palladio’s works; Verona, Juliet, Romeo and the Arena’s opera; Treviso and its famous hills with their several taverns with patio, where during the summer you can have lunch or dinner with grilled meat and red wine.

We’re looking forward to seeing you soon!

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