When you look at a map of Venice and try to select your hotel and activities by proximity, it only screws you up. Because you are still thinking as the crow flies. Venice is a series of town squares connected by alleys, narrow tunnels and bridges. Think of it more like a game of checkers, hopping from one square to the next. I suggest visitors select their hotel by proximity to the grand canal, especially near the Rialto bridge. Then you can take water taxis and ferries everywhere. If you are mostly landlocked, pack light because there are a lot of steps to carry your roller bag up and down.
Luckily, to keep from getting too lost, there are enterprising boys at the train station who will cart all of your luggage, get your ticket for you and put you on the right ferry for 10 Euros. Worth it.
The beauty starts right at the station
The ferries at Rialto Bridge
It took me almost a half an hour to find my hotel. There is a magic 10 minutes within which any location in Italy can be reached. My hotel was supposed to be 10 minutes away. But I didn’t understand the layout yet and my GPS did not understand the difference between a street and a canal, often leading me to dead ends like this.