Venice: December Weather AveragesDaily averages for December
|Sunshine Hours||3 hrs|
|Chance of Sunny Day||24 %|
|Rainfall days||10 days|
|Chance of Rain||30 %|
|Chance of Cloudy Day||41 %|
|Chance of Windy Day||8 %|
|Chance of Fog Day||29%|
|Chance of Snow Day||4%|
Daily averages for December
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Averages for Venice in December
December is one of the coldest months of the year in Venice, and the streets are practically deserted. During this month, the average temperature only ever reaches as high as 7°C (that's about 45°F), and at night can fall to lows of 0°C (about 32°F). Dress warmly--heavy sweaters and cold weather jackets, as well as rainproof shoes or Wellington boots, are a must. Hats, gloves and scarves would also be appropriate.
The average sea temperature is only 13°C (about 55°F) so you definitely will not be going swimming! There are 8.5 hours of average daily sunshine, with little variance over the month. The longest day of the year December 1 with 8:57 hours of sunlight; the shortest day is December 14 with 8:43 hours.
You can expect to experience rain on an average of 10 days in this month. The average monthly rain is around 54mm. The average probability that some form of precipitation will occur is about 35%, so be sure to pack a waterproof mac and umbrella as well.Precipitation will most likely occur as moderate rain at the beginning of the month, and to a lesser degree as light rain.
Skies above Venice in December are partly cloudy for the most part, as cloud cover ranges 60-66%. Humidity ranges from mildly humid (64%) to very humid (92%), rarely dropping below 40%. The air is both driest and most humid at the beginning of the month.
Daily wind speed varies from no wind to 7 mph (light breeze), rarely exceeding 19 mph. Winds typically blow in from the north or the northeast.
December in Venice is marked by chilly temperatures and moderate rainfall, with heavy fog. At the beginning of the month, average temperatures are at 6°C (43°F), with highs of 9°C (48°F) and lows of 3°C (37°F). By mid-December, averages drop slightly to 5°C (40°F), with highs of 8°C (45°F) and lows of 2°C (34°F). By December 31, averages round out to 3°C (38°F), with highs of 6°C (43°F) and lows of 0°C (32°F).
THINGS TO DO
In December, the mist and heavy fog rolls into Venice and makes for an enchanting and somewhat haunted cityscape. Travellers may want to take advantage of the ghostly atmosphere and head over to San Michele Island. This island has historically been the final resting places for many fishermen, gondola boatmen, and the famous like Stravinsky and Ezra Pound. It is a full day excursion from Fondamenta Nuove--just catch vaporetto 42 or 52.
If you find time to hop on a vaporetto while you’re in Venice, spend a day exploring Torcello. Even in wintertime, this island makes for a peaceful getaway. Enjoy a few hours of hiking or cycling in the fields and wetlands of this nature reserve. Be sure to stop by the Santa Fosca and Santa Maria Assunta churches adorned in Byzantine mosaics. Torcello is also home to some intriguing tidbits—a Ponte del Diavolo (Devil’s Bridge) and Atilla’s Throne, an ancient stone chair with a questionable heritage.
Or take a boat out to the nearby island of Burano and visit the village women who create extraordinary designs from lace. The isle is also famous for its houses, lined side by side and in all colors ever imaginable--almost as if a giant was let loose with a massive box of crayons all over the town. These colors are heavily regulated and you need special permission from the government if you wish to paint over an existing color.
The Palazzo Ca’Dario is reputedly the most haunted palace in town. Legend has it that the land it was built on used to be a Knights Templar cemetery. Each of its owners or their guests have consequently suffered violent deaths by murder or suicide. Recently, the palazzo has been offered for sale to the Guggenheim and Benetton families, and Woody Allen and Elton John, all of whom have turned it down.
Explore the Jewish Ghetto in the Cannaregio district. This area was the inspiration behind Shakespeare's Merchant of Venice. The term ghetto derives from the Venetian word for slag, or a byproduct of smelting metal. Centuries ago, Venice still permitted furnaces on the island, but restricted them to this area to reduce the risk of widespread fire. You can visit one of the synagogues or the museum of Jewish history.
December (and January) is opera season in Venice, with many performances at La Fenice and the Teatro Goldoni. La Fenice (San Marco 1965) is a famous opera house that dates from the late 18th century. On this stage the bel canto greats like Bellini, Rossini and Verdi held their premieres. Do be sure to purchase your tickets well beforehand online, as they tend to sell out weeks or even months ahead. The stage also hosts world-class concerts and ballets. Teatro Goldoni, known formerly as Teatro San Luca and Teatro Vendramin di San Salvatore, is another opera house in Venice located near the rialto Bridge. The site was the foundation for several opera houses over the centuries from the 17th century. the previous theatre was built in the 1720s and named after Carlo Goldoni, one of the greatest Venetian dramatists. It was closed after WWII because it was deemed unsafe, but after restoration reopened in 1979. The space also organizes concerts, ballets and children's theatre productions.
If you’ve had enough of stuffy museums, why not head to the gondola artisan’s workshop. Some guides will arrange private tours of a boatyard and introduce you to the history of the craft.
Head down to Squero di San Trovaso, a boatyard that first opened in the 17th century near the Giudecca Canal.
In the San Polo sestiere near the San Rocco art museum, you'll find the free and intriguing Museo della Musica. Exhibits include a large collection of instruments and an exhibit on violin-making. One room gives an interesting peek into the life of world-famous musician Antonio Vivaldi, who originally hailed from Venice.
The romantic city is lit up in magical lights and gorgeous decorations, even on the gondolas. Songs are sung at concerts in the piazzas throughout the month, and bells rung all day on Christmas Day. Hannukah is also celebrated by the impressive Jewish community with beautiful, illuminated menorahs, especially in the Cannaregio, the historic Jewish Ghetto in Europe.
On St. Stephen's Day, December 26th, many people visit nativity scenes in various churches around the city. During these religious festivals, crockery is traditionally thrown from balconies!
EATING & DRINKING OUT
Osteria al Garanghelo (Via Garibaldi 1621) is a mix of a bacaro and a trattoria. You'll find a range of cicchetti to pair with Prosecco. The menu also includes spaghetti with clams and vegetable soups.
All'Arco (San Polo 436) is located just a few steps from the Rialto fish market, and the seafood is incredibly fresh. Here you'll find shrimps, prawns, creamed cod, sardines in sauce, sausages. Just note that it closes shortly after 5pm with the market.
Osteria Al Portego (San Lio 6014) is one of the best place to grab a quick aperitif and cicchetti. All of the small plates are displayed in a glass showcase: artichokes, octopus, bread croutons with creamed cod. They also serve classic dishes like tagliatelle with cabbage and prawns, polenta with shrimp and spaghetti with squid ink. Note that this restaurant only takes cash!
Ca d'Oro (Cannaregio 3912) is one of the most popular bacari in Venice, known locally as Alla Vedova. The trattoria serves classics like fish soup and spaghetti with clams, but it's most famous dish is their fried meatballs.
Osteria La Bottega Al Promessi Sposi (Cannaregio 4367) is a classic bacaro includes meatballs, octopus with potatoes, tagliatelle with lamb ragout, and mussels au gratin.
Cantina Do' Mori (San Polo 429) is one of the oldest in Venice, and Casanova himself is said to have wined and dined here. Don't miss out on the Francobollo, a little sandwich stuffed with cold cuts, chicory and gorgonzola, or the sandwiches with pork nose and melted cheese.
El Sbarlefo (Calle San Pantalon 3757) is a new wine bar that also serves fresh fish--meatball in tomato sauce, polenta and herring, and cold sardines in sweet and sour onion sauce.
Il Paradiso Perduto (Fondamenta della Misercordia 2540) is a restaurant by day and hosts live music by night, attracting youths from the nearby universities with Italian rap. Munch on fantastic crabs, shrimps, mussels, and fried sole and down spritz or Prosecco while enjoying the tunes.
WHERE TO STAY
Hotel Moresco (Dorsoduro 3499) offers romantic guest rooms in the city area of Dorsoduro. The furnishings reflect Mediterranean styles with hints of the Orient. Guest rooms offer free wifi, and dry cleaning and laundry services. A secluded garden with sun terrace and lounge bar make for a short revitalising break just adjacent to the lobby.
San Stefano B&B (San Marco 3405) offers double and triple rooms at an affordable budget, with private bathroom, hairdryer, heating, safe, minibar, TV, wifi, and all rooms have a small cooking area with microwave oven.
Ca' Foscolo (Castello 5526) is an upscale apartment-hotel with spacious suites. Rooms are located on three floors of a prestigious 16th century building, lavishly decorated in gothic architecture, marble terrazzo floor, and bas-reliefs. There is a water entrance for guests who arrive by boat, and rooms overlook a quiet Venetian square. The size of each apartment varies in size from 45 to 70 square metres, the largest of which can hold up to 6 guests. Each unit is equipped with full kitchen with stove, microwave/oven and dishwasher, as well as typical satellite TV, en-suite bathrooms with shower and hairdryer, safe, heating and wifi.
For a similar property with apartments but at an affordable cost, book a room at the Sarai Apartments (San Marco 603). All units include fully stocked kitchens with refrigerators, small pantries, espresso makers, washers/dryers and ironing board. They also have all traditional amenities such as heating, LCD TV, wifi, washing machine.
Hotel Colombina (Calle del Remedio 4416) is a large luxury 4-star option with views of St. mark’s Basilica. The hotel is accessible by water taxi via the hotel’s private water landing. Each of the 32 rooms are equipped with bathroom, minibar, A/C and LCD satellite TV. Three suites are available for families and couples who require extra space, complete with lounge area and sofa.
A larger 4-star accommodation is Hotel Rialto Venice (Riva del Ferro 5149), with 79 impressive rooms, 28 of which overlook the Grand Canal. Each unit possesses all the standard amenities including bathtub or shower, A/C, satellite TV and minibar. On-site facilities also include a panoramic terrace and water landing for gondolas, water taxes and vaporettos 1 and 2.
Novecento (San Marco 2683) is a boutique hotel on Saint Mark’s Square. With only nine rooms, the property cultivates an intimate, chic atmosphere. Guests may sip an aperitif in the main lounge room or at the honesty bar. You may also visit the fitness centre at the hotel’s sister property, Hotel Flora.
Danieli Hotel Venice (Riva degli Schiavoni 4196) offers 215 singles and doubles, some with lagoon view. On the property there is the Restaurant Terrazza Danieli, two bars, and the Danieli Wine Suite on the top floor with picturesque views of the lagoon.
In Venice, traditional and antique furnishings is king. Travellers who go for modern, sleek designs might try one of the few designer hotels, such as Ca’ Pisani (Rio Terra Foscarini 97A). The interior of this hotel is in art deco style, featuring artwork by Italian Futurist Fortunato Depero. Book a double room, junior suite, family room and duplex with two levels.