The city of Venice is synonymous with beautiful gondolas, romantic canals, and scenic architecture, thus drawing thousands of tourists from all over the world. However, Venice has some of the best-kept treasures apart from its facades and waterways, which are its museums. The city has no dearth of palaces that have been converted into museums, courtesy it’s rich past when the city was a prosperous trade center from ancient times through the Renaissance era. However, with so many museums scattered throughout the city, it can be a tough decision to figure out, which ones to visit on priority. Here is a list of the top art museums in Venice, Italy, that should be at the top of your bucket list when you are visiting this beautiful Italian city.
1. Fortuny Palace
The Fortuny Palace or Museo Fortuny is a famous art museum located in central Venice’s San Marco. Perched in the Palazzo Pesaro Orfei, which is now referred to as Palazzo Fortuny, it should definitely feature on your itinerary. The Pesaro family constructed this magnificent Gothic-style palace in the 15th century. The structure is distinct because of its charming facade and its monumental halls on two different floors. This art museum houses exhibitions, as well as, displays Fortuny’s experimental and research interests. It has a stunning collection of fabrics, Fortuny’s lamps, and paintings, among others.
Address: S. Marco, 3958, 30124 Venezia VE, Italy
Website: Fortuny Palace
Opening hours: Sun: 12pm - 12:30am (closed on Mon - Sat)
Peggy Guggenheim, a rich American heiress, was a passionate art collector who made this city her home for 30 years. Palazzo Venier dei Leoni, this quaint palace dates back to the 18th century and was the former home of Peggy. It has now been transformed into one of the most iconic contemporary art museums in Italy. Take a leisurely walk through the majestic old dining room of the heiress, her salons, and study room. Marvel at the work, which ranges from abstract expressionism to cubism, a revolutionary approach invented originally by artists such as Pablo Picasso. Get an opportunity to admire the modern art pieces by Dali, Pollock, and Picasso when you are here.
Venice: Peggy Guggenheim Collection Ticket
Duration: 1 day
A museum gallery par excellence, Gallerie dell'Accademia showcases the 19th-century art in Venice. The museum is set on the Grand Canal’s south bank in Venice, Italy. It was opened in 1750 and boasts an enviable collection of stunning Venetian paintings, ranging from Byzantine to that of Renaissance artists. You will find paintings of renowned artists here, including Guardi, Canaletto vedutisti, Bellotto, Tintoretto, and Giambattista Tiepolo, among others. All these famous names have had a big role to play in impacting the history of painting in Europe.
Skip the Line: Venice Accademia Galleries Ticket
Duration: 60 to 120 minutes
4. Museo Correr
The Church of San Maurizio happens to be a Venetian church and is the same building where Museo Correr is housed. This iconic landmark draws tourists in its own right because of its architectural brilliance. The building has architectural elements from Renaissance and Gothic eras and dates back to the 10th century. Recently transformed into a museum, it pays homage to the special art of violin-making in Italy called Lliuteria. The museum’s versatile collection includes the Italian violin of the classical era and spans across three centuries. It also showcases the magnificent sculpture works by Antonio Canova. The museum also has many reclaimed treasures of Venice and comprised of ancient statues, maps, artistic masterpieces, and cameos.
Address: Piazza San Marco, 52, 30124 Venezia VE, Italy
Website: Museo Correr
Opening hours: 10:30am - 5pm (daily)
5. Palazzo Grimani di San Luca
Another fabulous Venetian art museum, Palazzo Grimani di San Luca is situated in the city of Venice and in proximity to Campo Santa Maria Formosa. Constructed in the 16th century, the palace was built by Michele Sanmicheli, a famous architect for Gerolamo Grimani, who was a renowned procurator. The facade of this imposing building includes three sectors featuring Corinthian columns. These columns have been inspired by Roman architecture. Currently, it houses the court of appeal. The museum has an impressive collection of Roman and Greek sculptures, while the ceiling frescos here are absolutely incredible.
Palazzo Grimani di San Luca
Address: Ruga Giuffa, 4858, 30122 Venezia VE, Italy
Website: Palazzo Grimani di San Luca
Opening hours: Tue - Sun: 10am - 7pm (closed on Mon)
6. Punta della Dogana
The collection of Francois Pinault, a contemporary art collector, has been distributed between two distinct venues. Punta della Dogana happens to be one of them in the city of Venice. The museum boasts thematic shows that feature the work of multiple talented artists. It houses a group exhibition titled “Luogo e Segni” that comprises contemporary art, which is a collection of work from 36 artists. These works establish a special association with their intellectual, historical, political, and social setting.
Punta della Dogana
Address: Dorsoduro, 2, 30123 Venezia VE, Italy
Website: Punta della Dogana
Opening hours: Wed - Mon: 10am - 7pm (closed on Tue)
7. Palazzo Cini
Set up in 1984, Palazzo Cini is a refined art museum in Venice. The museum features an incredible collection of historic art contributed by an Italian collector of the 20th century called Vittorio Cini. The impressive Gallery spans across two floors - while the first floor showcases the fascinating collections of the residence of the patron, the second floor is meant for hosting a variety of cultural events and exhibitions.
Address: Campo San Vio, 864, 30123 Venezia VE, Italy
Website: Palazzo Cini
Opening hours: Wed - Mon: 11am - 6:15pm (closed on Tue)
Visit and explore one of the most fantastic public art museums that overlook the Grand Canal in the city of Venice. Ca’ Rezzonico offers a rich ensemble of sculptures, paintings, and furniture dating back to the 18th century. Originally a palatial building, Ca’ Rezzonico is one of the best museums in the city today. The museum showcases a collection of paintings created by some of the finest Venetian painters of the 18th century, including Giambattista Tiepolo and Francesco Guardi.
Skip the Line: Ca' Rezzonico - 18th Century Venice Museum Entrance Ticket
Duration: 1 to 2 hours
9. European Cultural Centre - Palazzo Mora
European Cultural Centre - Palazzo Mora is just a stone’s throw away from Ca’ d'Oro, a famous palace situated on the Grand Canal in the city. The museum is an excellent cultural center in Venice and is a must-visit venue when you are in the city. It comprises three different floors, displaying contemporary artworks. Even if you are not so keen on art and exhibitions, the museum will not fail to impress you.
European Cultural Centre - Palazzo Mora
Address: Strada Nova, 3659, 30121 Venezia VE, Italy
Opening hours: Wed - Mon: 10am - 6pm (closed on Tue)
10. Grassi Palace
Venice offers so many wonderful museums scattered in different corners, with a generous dose of Renaissance art that will impress even the most experienced art lover. However, the contemporary art collection of Francois Pinault comes as a breath of fresh air. This French billionaire has to his credit one of the biggest private collections of artworks belonging to the 20th and 21st centuries. A major chunk of these 3,000 pieces has been split between two museums in the city- Palazzo Grassi and Punta della Dogana. Tadao Ando, a Japanese architect, has remodeled the interiors of these two historic buildings. The interiors now look sleek and are in perfect harmony with the contemporary masterpieces.
Address: Campo San Samuele, 3231, 30124 Venezia VE, Italy
Website: Grassi Palace
Opening hours: Wed - Mon: 10am - 7pm (closed on Tue)
Go museum-hopping in Venice
Venice is home to innumerable art galleries and museums, which will offer you an opportunity to learn more about the history of this beautiful Italian city. Check out this list of top art museums in Venice, Italy, so that you do not miss out visiting the most important ones.
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