Aside from the beautiful scenery in Venice, it is also known to be one of the most elegant and fashionable places in the world. Amal & George Clooney had their wedding in Venice, and you know those two know elegance. What makes Venetians so unique is that their style is all about comfort and practicality. It fits the lifestyle of this city. Yet somehow they still look so well put together. They’re basically that infamous fashion phrase effortless chic. I will be sharing tips on what to wear in Venice in order to look good and be practical for Venice activities. At the end, I’ll also be sharing some packing recommendations.
Venice’s Weather in October
After Rome and Florence, the last part of our trip was visiting Venice. Venice is far north in Italy. This means that the temperature is cooler than Rome and Florence. Typically in the Fall (especially in October), Venice is in its rainiest season and can lead to flooding. in 2018, Venice experienced its worst flood ever. Which means figuring out what to wear in Venice in October is a bit tricky.
As far as temperatures, this year it was unseasonably warm. On average, it is usually in the 50s. We were lucky and got mid to high 60s. But just like the other Italian cities, the temperature fluctuates throughout the day. First thing in the morning it was chilly and in the afternoon it was at its warmest. But when the sun goes down, it was chilly again. We also got very lucky with the rain. Leading up to our trip, it said that it would be raining the entire time we were there. Mother Nature changed her mind because we experienced no rain.
What to Wear in Venice
Below are my suggestions on what to wear in Venice.
As I mentioned above, in the mornings and evenings (after sunset) Venice was chilly. But during the day, it was at its warmest. Therefore, I recommend wearing layers. Specifically, light layers so that when walking around, it would not be a hassle or extra weight to carry. If your jacket is packable that is a plus! My rain jacket happens to be packable and it was so easy to fold or roll up barely taking up space. I was able to stuff it into Tre’s backpack and took it out when needed.
Bringing layering pieces is also important because there are lots of churches to see. Most churches have a strict dress code that requires you to cover your back and shoulders. So if you are wearing something sleeveless or strapless, you have to cover your shoulder. If you are in Venice during the warm season, I recommend bringing a light scarf to put over your shoulders and back. Otherwise, you will not be allowed to come into the church. Also, backpacks are not allowed in the church. There is a baggage fee when entering and you will have to drop it off at a location. I believe we had to pay 2 Euros. So keep that in mind and pack light when visiting churches.
Venice is a small city and most of the time you will be doing lots of walking. No cars are allowed. If walking is not an option, they do have ferries and water taxis. Most of the time I wore my white sneakers from Naturalizer (which I primarily showcased in my Rome outfits), my sandals, or my ECCO ballet flats (for when we went on nicer dinners). All 3 of my shoes are comfortable shoes to wear to walk. Head to this post for my review on Ecco Shoes.
Also, I was considering bringing my rain boots. I own the Hunter rain boots and they’re pretty heavy and take up space. So I took a gamble and decided if I really needed it, I’ll buy a pair there and consider it an Italian souvenir. I also took a gamble because after my stalking on Instagram, a couple rain showers didn’t seem worthy to bring them.
It wasn’t until I got back from our trip that I learned that Hunter has packable rainboots. They’re much lighter and easy to travel with. If I had them, I totally would have brought them. They’re also available at Nordstrom. Might need to ask for them for next Christmas haha.
When I say breathable clothes, I mean clothing that is light and airy and not clothing made out of heavy fabrics. When you have to walk everywhere (we average 20K steps a day), you definitely heat up and work up a sweat! Even with Venice’s cooler air. Breathable clothes are easy to layer with. You can easily slip on a jacket and they’re easy to pack too. I took this as an opportunity to wear dresses. I mainly wore maxi dresses or midi dresses with sleeves. Plus, if it rains I figured wearing a dress (or skirt) is must easier to deal with. The thought of wearing wet pants all day sounds so unappealing.
This dress is breathable. I wore it on a warmer day. Linen is such a great fabric to wear especially if you plan on going during the warm season. This photo was taken early morning in Piazza San Marco. I brought my jean jacket with me so that I could enter St. Mark’s Bascilica.
Most of the dresses I wore are part of the Fall collection. As you can see, I tried to pick outfits that can be versatile for warm and cool days. Therefore, every outfit can easily be converted to Fall style by pairing them with tall boots or booties.
5 Venice Packing Tips
Here is a packing list with tips to prepare you for your Venice trip. These are must-haves!
The key is packing light. Transportation is slightly different compared to other Italian cities because Venice is a city on water. And you will quickly realize the importance of packing as soon as you get off your train and need to get to your hotel. The waterbus has a limit of 1 bag per person. If you have more bags, you might need to get a water taxi. It is the most expensive form of transportation.
If you are walking to your hotel, there will be tons of bridges you will walk over and lifting your luggage is a pain! We made that mistake. Our map said it would only be a 10-minute walk. But we had 3 luggage pieces total and we were sweating like no other trying to pick up and put down our bags every time we crossed a bridge. Plus, the pavements are narrow and windy. And when there’s a crowd, it feels even more impossible.
Luggage On Wheels
If you don’t have a luggage with wheels, I highly recommend getting one now. Wheeling is so much easier than lifting. My favorite is the luggage from Tiko. I did a thorough review of them here. It’s small yet roomy and durable!
I swear by packing cubes. They not only help with keeping things organized but save so much room. I always feature them in my gift guide for the traveler. These are my favorite packing cubes. If you have bulkier items, I love using the compression packing cube.
As I mentioned, comfortable footwear is so important. You will be walking to almost every destination (or at least every destination is walkable). The pavement is cobblestone so it is not ideal for heels at all. If you want comfort and chic, I love almost everything from Naturalizer. I brought my Naturalizer white sneakers, ECCO Flats (super cute too!), and strappy sandals.
Because of the fluctuations in temperature throughout the day, going from day to night etc., it is so important to make sure you have the right outerwear with you. As I mentioned, I wore a jean jacket during the day when it was chilly, wore a blazer for my evening outwear and a rain coat for rainy days!
Check out the travel guide to Venice and stay tuned for the day trips from Venice guide!