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Bovolo Staircase (Scala Contarini del Bovolo) Tours

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1 Review
Bovolo Staircase (Scala Contarini del Bovolo)
Tucked down a Venice side street near the Grand Canal, Palazzo Contarini del Bovolo is worth a detour for its Bovolo Staircase (Scala Contarini del Bovolo). Named for the Venetian word for snail, this spiral staircase—the most famous in Venice—is housed in a cylindrical tower with open arches that climbs the facade, offering beautiful views over the city.

The Basics
The Scala Contarini del Bovolo was commissioned by Pietro Contarini at the end of the 15th century, and built by Giorgio Spavento in perfect synthesis to the original palace’s six floors of loggias designed by Giovanni Candi. A dramatic series of white stone arches spiral more than 90 feet (27 meters) up the imposing brick tower and seem inspired by the coils of a snail shell; at the top of the 80 steps, the belvedere has wonderful views over the Venetian rooftops. 

Though it’s the city’s most famous staircase, Bovolo is also somewhat of a hidden treasure, and visits to this architectural gem are often a highlight of off-the-beaten-track city tours. Consider joining a Secret Venice tour to explore the lesser-known corners of the city along with must-see sights such as St. Mark’s Square, the Doge’s Palace, and the Rialto Bridge. You can also pair walking tours with a gondola ride, so you can explore the city both by land and water.

Things to Know Before You Go
  • The Bovolo Staircase is especially interesting for architecture enthusiasts.
  • Be sure to bring your camera to capture the lovely views from the staircase and rooftop scenic overlook.
  • Tours of hidden Venice require a bit of walking, so wear comfortable shoes and a sun hat.
  • Due to steps and no elevator to reach the belvedere, the Bovolo Staircase is not accessible to wheelchairs or strollers.

How to Get There
The Bovolo Staircase is located at the Palazzo Contarini del Bovolo, near Campo Manin in the San Marco district of Venice. Take vaporetto line 1 or 2 to the Rialto stop from the train station. Trains to Venice run from most major cities in Italy, including Rome and Florence.

When to Get There
Bovolo Staircase is wonderful any time of day and year. If you’re a photography buff, visit in the late afternoon (before its 6pm closing time) to capture the city of Venice as the sun sets.

Bovolo on the Silver Screen
The Bovolo Staircase became popular among visitors to Venice after being immortalized on screen in Orson Welles’ 1952 adaptation of Shakespeare’s Othello.
 
Address: Palazzo Contarini del Bovolo, San Marco 4299, Venezia 30124, Italy
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Recent Reviews from Experiences in Venice

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Walking Tour and the Gondola Ride
Roam07773589735
, Jun 2019
The gondola ride was amazing with plenty of picture opportunities! It was relaxing, with opportunities to talk to locals if you know Italian. For the walking tour, it was very boring. The guide talked mainly about architecture, which I have no interest in.

37 Tours and Activities to Experience Bovolo Staircase (Scala Contarini del Bovolo)

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Entrance ticket to Scala Contarini del Bovolo

Entrance ticket to Scala Contarini del Bovolo

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The purchase of the entrance ticket to Scala Contarini del Bovolo will allow you to immerse yourself in the most evocative and unique tower in Venice. Scala Contarini del Bovolo ("Bovolo" in Venetian dialect means "snail") is one of the most singular examples of Venetian architecture of transition from the Gothic to the Renaissance style (Ca. 1499). 26 meters high and connected to the adjacent building via three loggias, it leads to the noble floor where the two exhibition rooms are located and culminates, after 113 steps, in the domed Belvedere. From here you can admire a splendid and unusual view of all of Venice.
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  • 30 minutes
From
$8.44
From
$8.44

Scala Contarini del Bovolo - Entrance Ticket

Scala Contarini del Bovolo - Entrance Ticket

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Discover the stories and secrets behind the most unusual staircase in Venice, the Scala Contarini del Bovolo. Pre-book your admission ticket and visit anytime during opening hours to climb this architectural curiosity, which spirals up the side of an ancient palazzo tucked within the city’s maze-like streets.
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  • 30 minutes
From
$8.44
From
$8.44

Venice Ghost and Legends Walking Tour

Venice Ghost and Legends Walking Tour

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As night falls on Venice and the crowds disappear, discover the city’s darkest secrets on this devilishly entertaining ghost tour. Wander through narrow passageways and past the blackened, vacant canals to uncover Venice’s haunted history. Listen to your ghost-hunter guide spin tales about the sinister deeds and tragic ends of the figures who once walked the streets—some of whom are believed to still wander as restless spirits.
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  • 1 hour 30 minutes
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$32.56
From
$32.56
Taking safety measures

Private Tour: Venice Half-Day Walking Tour

Private Tour: Venice Half-Day Walking Tour

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Discover Venice exactly the way you want to with this completely customized private tour. Your friendly local guide will create a 3-hour itinerary based on preferences you provide at booking. Whether you’re interested in architecture, local legends or Renaissance art, this tour is for you! Along the way, pop in at a local bar for a glass of regional wine and appetizers, and feel free to ask all the questions you like.
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  • 3 hours
  • Taking safety measures
From
$180.87
Price varies by group size
From
$180.87
Price varies by group size
Taking safety measures

Private Gondola Ride for Two in Venice

SPECIAL OFFER

Private Gondola Ride for Two in Venice

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Treat a loved one to the ultimate Venice experience with a private, 30-minute gondola ride along the Grand Canal and smaller side canals. Pass elegant Venetian palaces, colorful facades, and some of Venice’s most iconic landmarks. This private gondola tour is perfect for capturing photos of your time in Venice, and both morning and evening departures are available.
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  • 25 to 30 minutes
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$152.71
per group
$179.66
$26.95 savings
From
$152.71
per group
$179.66
$26.95 savings
Taking safety measures

Secret Venice Walking Tour and Gondola Ride

Secret Venice Walking Tour and Gondola Ride

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Experience two of the most unique sides of Venice with a combination of a walking tour of hidden gems and a gondola ride on the Grand Canal. Join an experienced guide for the start of your 2-hour combined tour by exploring some less-visited parts of Venice on foot. See the famous La Fenice theater's facade and the elegant spiral stair of Palazzo Contarini del Bovolo. Then enjoy a romantic gondola ride along the Grand Canal and some side canals, during which you'll see the magical city from a whole new perspective. Get to know some of the unusual areas of Venice.
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  • 2 hours
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$68.49
From
$68.49
Taking safety measures

Private Gondola Ride in Venice

SPECIAL OFFER

Private Gondola Ride in Venice

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Enjoy a quintessentially Venetian experience with this 30-minute private gondola ride for up to 6 people. Travel through Venice's picturesque canals for great photo opportunities of palaces and a view of the city you can't get any other way.
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  • 25 to 30 minutes
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$142.89
per group
$180.87
$37.98 savings
From
$142.89
per group
$180.87
$37.98 savings
Taking safety measures

Hidden Venice Walking Tour

Hidden Venice Walking Tour

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Get to know some of the canal city's secrets during this 1.5-hour walking tour of hidden Venice. Let an experienced local guide show you some of the city's more off-beat sights. Walk from the popular St. Mark's Square to the Rialto Bridge to find the hidden gems along the way. Enjoy seeing this unique city at a leisurely pace.
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  • 1 hour 30 minutes
  • Free Cancellation
From
$29.72
From
$29.72

Unusual Venice Walking Tour

Unusual Venice Walking Tour

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Venture beyond the major tourist spots to discover centuries of Venetian history and secrets. Stroll through the narrow backstreets and along quiet canals that run between St. Mark's Square and the Rialto Bridge, stopping to hear the legends behind landmarks like Teatro Fenice and the mysterious Bovolo Staircase. At just over an hour, it's a great way to get off the beaten path in Venice, even with limited time.
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  • 1 hour 15 minutes
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$24.12
From
$24.12
Taking safety measures

Discover Venice Walking Tour with Gondola Ride

Discover Venice Walking Tour with Gondola Ride

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Combine a walking tour of Venice with a classic gondola ride in this 2-hour tour. Follow your guide through Piazza San Marco to the Rialto Bridge, then explore the city's canals with a gondolier.
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  • 2 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$63.91
From
$63.91

Hidden Venice Afternoon Walking Tour

Hidden Venice Afternoon Walking Tour

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Venture off the beaten track and see the secret side of Venice on this 1.15-hour walking tour. Stroll along the tranquil canal ways and get a glimpse of local life as you explore Venice’s vibrant neighborhoods. Along the way, stop to snap photos of the Rialto Bridge, admire the striking Bovolo Staircase and La Fenice Theater, and peek into lively bacaris (local bars).
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  • 1 hour 9 minutes
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$29.72
From
$29.72
Taking safety measures

Afternoon Discover Venice

Afternoon Discover Venice

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Enjoy a relaxing stroll around the beautiful city of Venice on this 90-minute walking tour. See the city’s famous sights such as Piazza San Marco, Scala del Bovolo, and the Rialto Bridge as you listen to informative commentary from your guide about the city’s rich history. Admire the beauty of the canal system and the exquisite architecture of Venice.
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  • 1 hour 30 minutes
  • Free Cancellation
From
$27.73
From
$27.73

Carnival Mask Treasure Hunt

Carnival Mask Treasure Hunt

An amazing treasure hunt around Venice! Getting lost through the labyrinth of Venetian streets to find your personal treasure of carnival! Diversion couple adventure, funny family game or amusing friends contest: an incredible activity which fits everyone spirit and taste. Find your treasure and win a real carnival Venetian mask made by a local craftsman. During the hunt, you will have to take a picture of at least 3 points highlighted on the map. At the end, the treasure will be yours: one Venetian mask, ready to be painted. A professional Mask-maker will happily give suggestions to personalize it! An amusing way to discover Venetian highlights and secret corners.
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  • 2 hours
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$12.05
From
$12.05
Taking safety measures

Public Tour: Strolling around Venetian Calli and Canals

Public Tour: Strolling around Venetian Calli and Canals

Water connects everything in Venice, and on this private gondola ride, you’ll see life as the local do. Sit back and relax as your professional gondolier guides you through the city’s canals and waterways. Then, take a walking tour of the area between Piazza San Marco and the Rialto Bridge, passing by the Teatro la Fenice and Scala Contarini del Bovolo.
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  • 1 hour 45 minutes
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$63.91
From
$63.91
Taking safety measures

Grand Canal by Gondola and Secret Venice Tour

Grand Canal by Gondola and Secret Venice Tour

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Already ticked off the main sights? Then get ready to explore Venice’s insider-only locations during this off-the-beaten-track guided walking tour, which also includes a thirty-minute gondola ride. Listen to exclusive commentary on unique locations, like the world-renowned Teatro La Fenice and the Scala del Bovolo, as you discover hidden shops and little-known canals.
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  • 1 hour 45 minutes
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$63.91
From
$63.91
Taking safety measures

Skip-the-Line: Venice Walking Tour, Doge’s Palace, and Gondola Ride

Skip-the-Line: Venice Walking Tour, Doge’s Palace, and Gondola Ride

Discover Venice with this tour by foot and gondola, and visit the Doge’s Palace, too. With a guide, you’ll bypass the main entrance line to tour the historic palace in St. Mark’s Square. Learn about the doges of the Venetian republic, then explore the streets of modern-day Venice. Hear the history behind sights such as the Rialto Bridge before you take to the water, gliding through Venice on a traditional gondola boat. Numbers are limited to just 15 people for a small-group experience.
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  • 3 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$124.03
From
$124.03

Discover Venice: City Center Walking Tour

Discover Venice: City Center Walking Tour

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Step off the well-trodden path in Venice for a peek into the real life of the city. During this walking tour, your in-the-know guide will show you some of the hidden corners of this famous city and teach you about what life is like for locals. Headsets are included to hear your guide clearly.
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  • 1 hour 15 minutes
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$27.73
From
$27.73
Taking safety measures

Hidden Venice Walking Tour and Gondola Ride

Hidden Venice Walking Tour and Gondola Ride

star-3
Discover the magic and mysteries of Venice from two different perspectives on a combo gondola ride and walking tour. Climb aboard a traditional Venetian gondola for a voyage through the Grand Canal and some smaller, atmospheric canals, passing magnificent palazzos and churches along the way. Then, explore the historic area between St. Mark’s Square and the Rialto Bridge on foot, following a guide through winding backstreets, squares, and marketplaces brimming with character to uncover the hidden stories of Venice.
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  • 2 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$68.48
From
$68.48

In Venice for the first time

In Venice for the first time

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This tour will provide you with an orientation and introduction to the history of this magical city. The walk unfolds through the elegant Piazza San Marco, you will admire the heart of the city until you reach the Rialto Bridge accompanied by your Myvenicexperience guide who will tell you curious anecdotes and historical facts.
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  • 2 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$84.41
From
$84.41

Venice City Pass: Free admission to Venice's top attractions & airport transfer!

Venice City Pass: Free admission to Venice's top attractions & airport transfer!

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Sightseeing, especially in a city as famous as Venice, can quickly get expensive. Save money, and time, with the Venice City Pass, which gives you free, skip-the-line, admission to many of the city's most important attractions.
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  • 7 days
From
$108.40
From
$108.40

Secrets of Venice Private Walking Tour with Guide

Secrets of Venice Private Walking Tour with Guide

The area between Rialto and Piazza San Marco is typically thick with tourists. On this intimate tour, venture away from these heavily-trafficked paths to explore the quieter, more authentic parts of Venice. Your private guide escorts you to lesser-known sites such as Campo Santo Stefano, Scala Contarini del Bovolo, and Teatro Goldoni. Time to ask questions, and take photos is scheduled in.
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  • 2 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$348.47
per group
From
$348.47
per group

Public Tour: Beauties in Venice

Public Tour: Beauties in Venice

star-5
Discover one of the most charming and historic parts of Venice on a walking tour of the winding maze between St. Mark’s Square and the Rialto Bridge. Leave the crowds behind as a guide leads you through winding sidestreets and across foot bridges, stopping to hear the legends behind landmarks like the Teatro la Fenice opera house and the curious Scala del Bovolo staircase.
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  • 1 hour 15 minutes
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$27.73
From
$27.73
Taking safety measures

Private Tour: Beyond Saint Mark's Square Hidden Venice Walking Tour

Private Tour: Beyond Saint Mark's Square Hidden Venice Walking Tour

Explore some of Venice's hidden treasures during this private 2-hour walking tour. See lesser-known sights like Campo Santa Maria Formosa, the Libreria Acqua Alta, and the circular Bovolo Staircase.
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  • 2 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$473.83
per group
From
$473.83
per group

Walking tour in Venice City Center - (2 hours)

Walking tour in Venice City Center - (2 hours)

The tour gives a first overview of the city center. It is a walking experience in the central district of San Marco
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  • 2 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$62.01
From
$62.01

Private overview of Venice: 2-hour guided walking tour

Private overview of Venice: 2-hour guided walking tour

star-4
Explore the hidden secrets of Venice by going on a guided walking tour. Opting for a private tour means you’ll have your guide’s undivided attention, and you’ll be able to ask questions along the way. The tour will take you away from the main tourist attractions, which means you’ll get a glimpse of local spots that you wouldn’t discover alone. Explore hidden alleyways, and see picturesque sites such as Opera house La Fenice, Rialto Bridge, the Grand Canal, and more.
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  • 2 hours
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$297.14
per group
From
$297.14
per group
Taking safety measures

Venice Shore Excursion: Private Half-Day Walking Tour

Venice Shore Excursion: Private Half-Day Walking Tour

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Leave your cruise ship at the port and see the sights of Venice with a private guide. The 3-hour shore excursion is tailored to you, so you decide what you want to see and when. Go off the well-trodden tourist track to visit the neighborhood of Cannaregio, or scout out the wares of Rialto fish market. Check out tucked-away churches, and then finish with a glass of wine and nibbles in a local bar. It’s a great way to see a side of Venice that many visitors miss.
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  • 3 hours
  • Taking safety measures
From
$180.87
Price varies by group size
From
$180.87
Price varies by group size
Taking safety measures

Frequently Asked Questions

The answers provided below are based on answers previously given by the tour provider to customers’ questions.
Q:
Should I book Bovolo Staircase (Scala Contarini del Bovolo) tickets in advance?
A:
We recommend booking e-tickets ahead of time to secure your spot since Bovolo Staircase (Scala Contarini del Bovolo) can get crowded. If you book with Viator, you can cancel at least 24 hours before the start date of your tour for a full refund. See all 37 Bovolo Staircase (Scala Contarini del Bovolo) tickets and tours on Viator.
Q:
How much does it cost to visit Bovolo Staircase (Scala Contarini del Bovolo) 2020?
A:
Currently, an entrance ticket to Bovolo Staircase (Scala Contarini del Bovolo) costs USD 8.44. Guided Bovolo Staircase (Scala Contarini del Bovolo) tours start around USD 8.44 per person. See all 37 Bovolo Staircase (Scala Contarini del Bovolo) tickets and tours on Viator.
Q:
What's the best way to experience Bovolo Staircase (Scala Contarini del Bovolo)?