Lido di Venezia: Much More Than Beaches

by Elena Binda
One of the most memorable scene from ‘Death in Venice’ (1971), the cinematographic masterpiece directed by Luchino Visconti. All rights reserved (c) Mario Tursi - Archivio Storico del Cinema

A map of this venue follows

Although the Lido is Venice’s beach, it is also much more. An island, a town with its own history and a nature reserve, it is also a jet-setters’ paradise, with luxury hotels and exclusive villas. In September, it becomes the world capital of cinema

The Lido (meaning beach in Italian) is a separate island from Venice. Measuring less than 200 metres in depth in certain areas, it is a 12km stretch of sand, strategically positioned between the Lagoon and the open sea, only connected to the city and dry land by ‘vaporetti’ or ferry boats. The clear difference between the Lido and Venice is that the Lido has real streets, which means you get around by car. In mid-November, Rolls Royce’s, Cadillac’s and Bentleys abound at the entrances of grand hotels. However, today, it is considered chicer to access the Lido by boat or explore it on foot or by bicycle.

The nature reserve and its beaches

Alberoni beach at the Lido

The nature reserve and wild sand dunes of the Alberoni, recognized and protected by the WWF since 1997, are the perfect place for a quick swim. The area comprises 160 hectares of land, including two kilometres of golden sand dunes that extend from Murazzi to the Alberoni dam, and a beautiful pine forest. For a natural beach experience, the Lido also offers several free beaches, like the sandy dunes of San Nicolò, the rocky outcrops of the Murazzi, or the beach known to the Venetians as ‘Bluemoon”.

Should you prefer the traditional beach ‘capannas,’ fully equipped beach huts with private patio and sunbeds, you should check this list.

The historical golf course

Among other attractions, the area is home to an exclusive golf club set against a stunning backdrop of umbrella pines and poplars. Founder of the famous automotive house and an avid fan of Venice, Henry Ford commissioned the course in 1926, when he discovered to his disappointment that there was nowhere else where he could play golf, a sport widely practised in America, but not in Italy at that time.

The golf course is still existing today: the Circolo Golf Venezia (see the official website).

A picture of the local golf course: the Circolo Golf Venezia
A picture of the local golf course: the Circolo Golf Venezia

Wandering around the Lido

Moving to the other end of the island, we find Malamocco, a small, ancient town that offers visitors a mini experience of Venice with its canals, ‘campielli’ and ancient buildings. Also dating back to olden times, in a more northerly direction, is the settlement of San Nicolò del Lido, featuring a Benedictine complex built in the 11th century

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Vaporetto lines:
lines 1, 2, 5.1, 5.2 (Lido stop)

GPS: 45.41761, 12.36844
Find it on Google maps

Lido di Venezia – Venice Lido


Get inspired: top-in-town destinations in Venice 

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