Gondola shipyard Venice (Squero San Trovaso)

Insider tip:
Travel comfortably without queues, buy tickets online beforehand:





 


Of course, the gondolas of Venice have to be manufactured somewhere. Since these boats are almost only available here, the gondolas are also built in Venice. The gondola builder is an old craft in Venice. In the past there were dozens of gondola shipyards, today there are only very few. The Squero San Trovaso is the most famous gondola shipyard that still exists. It is located in the middle of Venice, not far from the Accademia Bridge in the district of Dorsoduro. The nice thing is, you can watch the gondola builders at work here. The company Squero San Trovaso is directly at a small canal, opposite is a restaurant. Here you can have a coffee and watch the gondola builders at work from a distance of 10 meters. This has become a tourist attraction.

The name of the company Squero San Trovaso is composed in this way. Squero is the Venetian word for gondola shipyard. San Trovaso is the name of the neighbouring church.

At first glance, the San Trovaso Gondola Shipyard is an unusual building for Venice. It is a building made of wood, in Venice everything else is built of stone. Many things remind of a carpentry. No wonder, the gondolas of Venice are made of wood.

In front of and inside the shipyard building, new gondolas are built and old ones repaired by the spectators on the other side of the canal in the Osteria Al Squero restaurant. The gondolas are at least 11 meters long and, according to a decree of the city of Venice, they are all black. The boats are built with several different types of wood.

>>> Our page about gondola riding in Venice

The company Squero San Trovaso has existed for many generations. The knowledge how to build gondolas is passed on from generation to generation. It is not easy, it still takes 10 years to become a master gondola builder and be able to build gondolas on your own. The production of a gondola takes many months.

The spectators in the Osteria Al Squero are from all over the world and watch the work in the small shipyard with great enthusiasm. The gondola shipyard in Venice Squero San Trovaso is something of an insider tip among the tourist attractions of the lagoon city. The restaurant has pleasant prices. In Italy, an osteria is a place where mainly drinks and snacks are served.

Most guests drink coffee or a glass of wine at the Al Squero Inn. Also popular are the cicchetti, a specialty in Venice. They are small sandwiches, for example with fish or sausage. You can try some of them, they cost only 1.50 a piece (as of summer 2020).

Book a gondola trip on the Internet

There is a very good English website where you can book a gondola ride in advance. The following links lead to some offers:

1. Classic gondola ride: One rents a gondola with driver. Departure is near St. Mark's Square, duration: about 30 minutes.    >>>>  More information and booking

2. Gondola tour at night: Similar as above, but in the evening. After 18 o'clock the gondola rides in Venice are a little more expensive..    >>>>  More information and booking

3. Savings package Venice: Gondola ride with other people, entrance without queues to the Doge's Palace and St. Mark's Cathedral and 2 hours city tour with guided tour in English:    >>>>  More information and booking

Short film about the Squero San Trovaso nacelle shipyard


Watching at work from the Osteria Al Squero

Directions to Squero San Trovaso Gondola Yard

The nearest vaporetto station (water bus stop) is Zattere and about 100 meters from the shipyard. Lines 2, 5.2. and 6 stop here.

Most visitors to the gondola builders combine their visit to the shipyard with a visit to the art museums Accademia and Peggy Guggenheim (150 and 300 meters away respectively).

Our tip: Buy tickets for waterbuses beforehand

It is not always easy to buy tickets abroad. You don't know where to buy tickets, foreign ticket machines are difficult to use, there are language problems, queues, etc.

The 1, 2 or 3 day valid tickets for the waterbuses (ferries) in Venice are needed by almost every tourist. These tickets can now be bought on this english website.

The tickets for the bus from Venice airport to the city are available on this page in English language.
 

>>> Our page about gondola riding in Venice


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