A Venice walking tour app? Yes, Ecco Venezia!
As you probably remember, not a long time ago I was invited to test a Venice walking tour app to get around town. I have to admit, I still have problems getting around Venice. Yes, you can follow the yellow signs, but only if you’re headed towards the main sites. And even so, sometimes they’re not clear or they’re not present all the way. I often used Google Maps but sometimes it’s not precise or the gps fails to work.
The Venice walking tour app Ecco Venezia! (meaning Here is Venice!) is something different. You can in fact download a route at home and then use it when in Venice, even without gps, as a Venice offline map on your mobile.
The different paths are provided with thorough descriptions and photos. Therefore, gps or not gps, you can still understand where you are and where you have to go.
With gps on, it’s far better, though. You can see where you are (blue point on the map), where you’re headed, which are the next interest points, with a brief descripition. The aim of the app is to allow you to go around and about Venice, not to replace a tourist guide, so just short info, useful to understand your way.
As you can see in the photo below, when I arrived in Campo Santi Apostoli, I could see the image of the campo. Exactly the same visual I had in front of me. Very easy way to be sure of my route.
How to use Ecco Venezia!
- You just have to download it on your smartphone (ios or android) and the content will appear to you in English or in Italian, according to your phone settings.
- At this point you’ll see three icons: My Routes, Store and Settings.
- By clicking on the Store icon you’ll see all the available paths and you will be able to download them.
- Once downloaded, they’ll be ready for you to see in the My Routes area.
- Select the route and just go!
In the right-low part of the screen, you can choose the way to display the map (static, dynamic and textual) by clicking on the 3 vertical points. And whether to use the gps or not.
Ecco Venezia! My test
My test began at the train station. I followed the path from Piazzale Roma to San Marco and it was quite easy to follow. I only stopped here and there to take some pictures.
Then I chose another path, from San Marco to Accademia. I was very lucky cause it was a wonderful sunny day.
Another route was from Accademia to Campo Santa Margherita to reach Carta e Penna (paper and pen), a stationery shop, affiliate to the app circuit. I love Campo Santa Margherita, always so lively. It was full of kids playing, people chatting or having a drink al fresco.
On my way to the campo, I walked by a boat greengrocer, very quaint! I noticed it thanks to the app. I’m always head over hills and I often do not see things around me when I’m in a hurry. So it was very useful to have a note pointing the boat greengrocer to me.
Then I headed towards the hotel Corte di Gabriela, also affiliate to the app. It was a very nice hotel in a quiet calle. Luckily I had the chance to take a peek at their inner courtyard. Honestly, I would have loved to stop there but I had no time.
So I reached Rialto, then Campo Santi Apostoli and met the app inventors for an aperitivo and a chat before going home.
Interesting also for hotels and shops
As you read, also hotels and shop can sign in and made the inventors create a path from their location to the next vaporetto station or the next landmark. This way, people can easily find them without getting lost. Therefore this app has a great potential.
- it’s easy to use and allows you not to get lost
- perfect for those who want to reach quickly a landmark or an area
- you can download the maps at home or in the hotel (where you have WIFI) and save them in the app memory
- you can follow the path also without GPS and use it as an offline Venice map, just following descriptions and indications
- the main point of interest are indicated
- also the public toilets are indicated
- there are quick notes about some things to ay attention to during the route
- with GPS on you always know where you are (blue point)
The only cons I found so far were the paths not in alphabetical order and not searchable (but I suggested to improve those aspects). Of course, the paths are predetermined, but it’s the app’s way.
In conclusion, I think I will definitely use the Venice walking tour app again when I’ll be in town next time. I want to try other routes. It’s very useful to find new paths and discover quaint details of the city.
Post in collaboration with Ecco Venezia! app. As always opinions are entirely my own.