If you’re visiting Venice in the summer months, then you might be tempted to spend some sunny and relaxing time at one of the beaches on the Lido a long, narrow island separating Venice from the Adriatic Sea and which can be quickly and easily reached by taking the vaporetto from the centre of the city.

Traditionally beaches have been segregated into either free public beaches or private beaches belonging to certain hotels or private/public companies which charge for facilities such as beach hut (‘capanna’) occupancy, sun loungers & parasols etc. on their area of beach and it was forbidden for non-paying individuals to settle down and relax on any part of that beach.

However in 2011, Venice’s Mayor announced that these hotels and private/public companies will no longer be able to restrict use of the beaches in this way. Their designated areas will be marked by boundaries leaving the remainder of these beaches available for the (free) enjoyment of all.

The Lido’s most central and traditionally public (free) beach can be found at the end of the main street (the ‘Gran Viale Santa Maria Elisabetta’) which is a short walk from the vaporetto stop of Lido Santa Maria Elisabetta.

Alternatively, the formerly all-private beaches which can now be accessed by non-paying individuals but where the hotels or private/public companies still charge for use of their beach facilities such as beach huts etc. within their designated areas, include –
the Excelsior/Amaranti Beach, the Quattro Fontane Beach and the Des Bains Beach

the Lungomare D’Annunzio and San Nicolò beaches (www.veneziaspiagge.it),

while at the western end of the Lido lies Alberoni (www.bagnialberoni.com) which has its traditionally public (free) beach and a private beach. Famous as the setting for the final beach scene in the 1971 Luchino Visconti directed film ‘Death in Venice’ starring Dirk Bogarde and for its pine forest and historic golf club, Alberoni can be reached by taking a combination of vaporetto from Venice to Lido Santa Maria Elisabetta and then local bus or via a scenic ride on a summer boat service operating from Venice’s Zattere waterfront to Alberoni .