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A Different Venice

They say Venetian boys play not with cars, but with boats. And they say there is only one Venice on the Earth. Nonsense! We're going to tell you about other places — less known, but not less appealing.
Five cities like Venice

Scandinavian Venice — Copenhagen

Streets of Copenhagen are filled with bicycles, while the waterways are filled with boats, yachts, and rafts. Some Danes even live on boats! Your tour of the canals is their routine: somebody is watching the sunset and having their glass of wine, another is reading a book, and the third is a sea-traveller on a break in Copenhagen.
It is far more pleasant to go to Copenhagen in dry season, but it is hard to forecast it in advance. From May to September it is warm here, but be ready for the changeable weather of the Northern seas. Though, the Danes can create comfort in any season. Hugge really means a lot here.
The canal embankment in Copenhagen><meta itemprop=

The canal embankment in Copenhagen
It's better off buying an unlimited ticket for hop-on hop-off buses and boats. Get off to look around and see the sights, hop on the next bus or boat. A 48-hour ticket costs from 315 DKK. Buy in advance at Audio guide is included.
Copenhagen is hygge-style Venice:
cozy and relaxing recreation.

The Flemish Venice — Bruges

Bruges has survived as an integral ensemble of the late middle Ages and Renaissance. A network of canals cuts through blocks of peaked gingerbread houses. Tourists sail along some small canals, while other three main ones are used by large sea vessels — Bruges is still a major commercial port.
Boating season lasts from May till September. Boat trips are about half an hour long, so you won’t get cold. Basically, the boats and the routes are the same, so we recommend coming before the opening hours, not to get stuck is the queues. Tickets are not sold in advance, booking is possible for groups of 20 people.
Textured houses in Bruges><meta itemprop=

Textured houses in Bruges
One trip costs € 10. Renting a boat is pricey, however, it can accommodate up to 30 people on board. If you have a whole crowd with you, that’s a bargain.
Bruges is a retro-style Venice:
a journey through time
and flavorful Belgian waffles.

The Venice Of The Alps — Annecy

The French town of Annecy is located on the shores of the same name lake, one of the purest in Europe. Many canals run through the tiny old town. Annecy is one of those really colorful medieval cities where the streets and the canals are so narrow that two people or boats can hardly pass by.
Annecy is a small but extremely busy urban space. The main canal is quite narrow, however, there is an island with a fairy-tale ship-shape palace in the middle of it. The town reminds of Switzerland not only by its architecture. It is also surrounded by the majestic Alps, hanging over the crystal surface of the lake.
The Island Palace of Annecy><meta itemprop=

The Island Palace of Annecy
The boating season in Annecy is from May till the end of September. There are 30 min or 60 min rides which cost from € 12 to € 22. Learn more at
Annecy is Venice in the mountains:
spectacular nature, fresh air
and a fabulous maze-like town.

Venice in the North — St. Petersburg

At the daytime, you can observe Pushkin's apartment from the water, the Peter and Paul fortress, the Summer garden, the Hermitage and toss coins at Chizhik-Pyzhik, at night — admire the bridges getting open and the Imperial architecture in mystical illumination. We recommend a guided walk to know the stories behind observed sights. Dress warm if you are visiting the place not in the summer.
Drawbridges in St. Petersburg><meta itemprop=

Drawbridges in St. Petersburg
Water trips in St. Petersburg are diverse, and it is a tough choice: day or night tours lasting from 30 minutes up to five hours. We recommend a night walk under the drawbridges. Check out the details at
Walks on a white night are highly recommended. The shortest and the brightest night is on the summer solstice June 21 — June 22. It’s reasonable to book a hotel for this time in advance, prices in the tourist season go up, but your impressions worth it, right?
St. Petersburg is a romantic Venice, especially in June
when the white nights are.

Asian Venice — Suzhou

Suzhou, China, is an hour’s drive from Shanghai. A network of water channels runs through the city center and overviews the South Chinese splendor: bridges, pagodas, parks and gardens. On some boats artists give a traditional performance — songs in the Suzhou dialect to the accompaniment of ancient Chinese string instruments.
A Bridge over the canal in Suzhou><meta itemprop=

A bridge over the canal in Suzhou
The nearest airport to Asian Venice is in Shanghai, so we recommend booking a tour to Suzhou. The price of a boat trip around the city is from 120 yuan. There are daytime or night tours, for an hour or a whole day.
Suzhou is the farthest and the most exotic Venice.
It is better to visit Suzhou in spring or autumn: it is warm and nice.
By the way, Marco Polo called Suzhou the Venice of the East. As he was born in a real Italian Venice he must have known the ropes.

Venice — Italy

Elegant boats of the Grand canal, flocks of pigeons in San Marco square, carnival masks, friendly gondoliers in striped vests, the colorful and tiny island of Burano and the world-famous Murano glass. It is always good to be back to this must-visit city. At least to have a chance to compare with other Venice-like cities. Sadly, the most famous one is gradually sinking in the waters of the Venetian lagoon.
For art lovers we recommend combining their trip with the Venice Biennale, which takes place here once in two years from May to November. Dates have to be specified in advance.
Venetian back streets><meta itemprop=

Venetian back streets
In addition to the famous gondolas in Venice, there is a more affordable and practical transport — the vaporetto water bus. A 90 minutes one-way ticket costs € 8. If you want to go around Venice, it is reasonable to buy a 24-hour pass, which costs € 20. More information about passes —
30-minute gondola ride rates are from € 80, but the boat can accommodate up to 6 people, so take your trip with friends.

Text: Anastasia Yastremskaya-Semenova,
canals and bridges admirer.
Photo: Canva, Pixabay.
Editor: Nikita Andreev.
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