Outdoor adventures near Venezia Mestre
Most travelers associate Venice with its sprawling piazzas and wonderful canals. These are, of course, the touchstones of the city’s appeal as a travel destination, but what might surprise most people is the access to nature that Venetians and travelers enjoy.
Within a few hours, you can reach the foothills of the magnificent Dolomite mountains for trekking, hiking, mountain biking, rock climbing, and more. There’s also the wonderful Lake Garda and River Sile worth checking out. If you want to stay closer to the city center, you can use the natural beauty surrounding Venice to your advantage, like kayaking through the canals, taking a boat through the Venice Lagoon, or even renting a bike and pedaling around Lido Island.
Whether you’re taking a day trip or simply getting active during your visit to Venice, you’ll have plenty of options, especially with transportation hubs like Venezia Mestre at your disposal. Just remember that you won’t want to carry all your suitcases with you on these outdoor adventures. So, head to a Venezia Mestre luggage storage spot to drop everything off first.
Here are the best outdoor adventures near Venezia Mestre and Venice:
Kayak or paddleboard through Venice’s Canals
This one should be a given, but if you want to get active during your trip to Venice, the quickest way aside from walking will be to rent a kayak and get paddling. With a whole labyrinth of canals, you can explore the entire city on your own or via a guided kayaking tour. If you really want a workout, you can rent a stand-up paddleboard (SUP).
Bike through Sile National Park
If you have a few hours on a nice day, you can get out of the at-times cramped Venetian city center and experience the open-air plain sandwiched between the Adriatic and Venetian lagoons.
The flat terrain makes it great for renting a bike and riding down Via Claudia Augusta through Sile National Park. You’ll enjoy views of the mountains and be able to visit the town of Treviso. While it’s not far from Venice or the ocean, there’s a bucolic charm to this area that’s rarely so accessible from the city.
The vineyard in Trevini will be difficult to ride past, and it’s never a bad idea to pop in for a glass and some cheese to fuel your ride. It’s about a 40-minute drive or ride via the REG or RV trains to get up there, but it’s well worth it.
Hike the Tre Cime di Lavaredo Loop
One of the easiest hikes through the Dolomites is to head to Tre Cime di Lavaredo (or the Three Peaks of Lavaredo). This is the perfect day trip or weekend getaway from Venice, with the journey taking less than two hours. The six-mile loop features gradual altitude change and exceptional views from start to finish.
Tofana di Mezzo for hiking
If you’re looking for a short but challenging hike through the Dolomites, head to the foothills at Tofana di Mezzo. You’ll first head to Cima Tofana, just north of Venice. You’ll take the Freccia nel Cielo cable car up to the trailhead. At a short distance, you might underestimate this one, but the steep ascent to the peak is demanding for even intermediate hikers. The views are worth whatever jitters you feel on the way up because you’ll see a wide range of the Dolomites (including panoramic views of Corrina d’Ampezzo) from the viewing platform at the top.
Take a trip to Lake Garda
Glaciers once made their home in the landscape between the Dolomites and the Adriatic, but as they gradually retreat towards the Alps in the north, they’ve left us with some incredible natural wonders. One of these is the magnificent Lake Garda and its canyons. If you want to take a day trip or a full weekend of camping, rock climbing, and hiking, this is one of the best and most accessible destinations. Even better, the refreshing lake offers swimming and kayaking to give you a break from the summer heat.
For one of the most difficult but rewarding treks near Venice, you’ll have to head north to the Dolomites. Disclaimer: This trek can take more than a week through perilous Alpine terrain. It’s simply not for everyone. But if you’re an experienced trekker with ample vacation time, there is simply no better way to experience the Dolomites than Alta Via. You’ll cross Alpine lakes and rugged limestone terrain, but the views of the surrounding Dolomites will be incredible, and the sense of accomplishment will pair nicely with some unbelievable dinners back in Venice.
Take a sailing tour of the Venice Lagoon
It’s hard not to be jealous of the many boat owners sputtering around the Venetian canals and lagoon. Their stylish wooden boats are the epitome of cool. If you haven’t chartered a boat ride through the canals, you should consider hiring a sailboat to take you out into the open waters of the lagoon. You’ll enjoy spectacular views of the entire city, and you’ll be able to peek into Lido Island, all while enjoying the breeze off the water and some Adriatic sun.
Bike around Lido Island
While you might never want to leave the canals of Venice, getting out of the city for a few hours is easy enough with a quick trip to nearby Lido Island. This charming little place is lined with historic avenues, and gardens are seemingly everywhere.
Being mostly flat, you can rent a bike and pedal around to enjoy the scenery. You’ll be able to see landmarks like the Piazza Santa Maria Elisabetta, the Palazzo dell’Ex Casinò, and the Palazzo del Cinema. If you’re heading to Lido for some sightseeing, biking can even help you pack a full day into a few hours.
If you’re planning on a hiking trip during your vacation in Venice or simply want to get outdoors for a while, you might need a place to store the bags. Luckily, the Bounce luggage storage network has dozens of locations throughout Venice, including ones serving the Venezia Mestre train station. Bounce makes finding and booking luggage storage easy via the mobile app and website.
You can book on the go, or arrange it ahead of time when you’re planning your trip. Bounce partners with local businesses and vets them to ensure quality and security, so you’ll be dealing with a helpful and friendly local, not to mention the 24/7 customer support. The BounceShield Guarantee also helps give you the peace of mind you’ll need to enjoy the outdoors near Venice.