The vegetable garden of Venice: the island of Sant’Erasmo

Sant’Erasmo, the green island

Sant’Erasmo is more than 4 km long and its width varies between 500 m and 1 km; its shape is a reminder of its past as beach.  

The inhabitants are about 750, mainly dedicated to farming, to the maintenance of green, and to wine production. The island has always been considered the garden of Venice and like in past times, it has an excellent production of fruits and vegetables, especially artichokes, cardoons and asparagus. Wine is also produced here, once it occupied a great part of the agricultural activity: not by chance the local people use the word “vigna”(vineyard) to indicate the fields and love to commemorate this activity with one of the most popular festival of the lagoon, “la Festa del Mosto” (Festival of the Must), the first Sunday of October.







Let’s go!

We recommend you to visit the island of Sant’Erasmo by bike, so you can move freely. But if you forgot it at home, don’t worry: there are many bike rentals in our area and also on the island itself. Leave in the morning - it’s the best time, and despite the summer sun there’s still a little cool night breeze - and reach the landing stage of the Ricevitoria in Treporti to take the line 13.
Once you get off in Sant’Erasmo you’ll be impressed by its rural aspect and by the silence of the surrounding vegetable plantations (among which the famous violet artichoke of Sant’Erasmo), vineyards and orchards, interrupted only by woods and canals, by some old fish farm or by some isolated house, immersed in a rarefied atmosphere, almost suspended in a time that is not aware of modern development.  

A route suitable for everyone

Whether by bike, by foot or ready for some Nordic Walking, we advise you to be comfortably dressed because it will be a ring-route on paved road and on dirt road lasting  about 2 hours and a half.
Get off at the first stop: Punta Vela and go on along the bank of the canal, following the same direction of the water bus you just left. Reach the iconic Chiesa del Cristo Re (The Church of Christ the King), built in the XX century, and then enter into the fields and vineyards. Just before you turn toward the Torre Massimiliana (Maximilian Tower), you can stop at the famous Wine bar ‘Orto di Venezia’ to sip their excellent white wine under the shade of the trees.

If you wish to eat some “cicheti” (if you want to nibble something) on the banks of the lagoon, you can go on up to Punta del Bacan where you can find the beach with a kiosk, that the Venetians usually reach by motorboat. At the back of the beach stands majestically the historical Torre Massimiliana, renowned for hosting the Archduke Maximilian of Austria during the revolt of 1848 and then used as Telemetric Tower until the Second World War.

You’re halfway through the route!
Going on Via dei Forti, that turns left behind the Tower, just enter the territory surrounded by cultivated fields. After about 0,8 km from the turning point you run into a manufacturer of honey. Here the whole street is very interesting from the naturalistic point of view and it’s also a good point to do some birdwatching (pheasants, blackbirds, starlings, black-winged stilt, etc.) The water lattice represented by the fish farms - one of the constants of the manmade landscape of the island - is directly linked to the surrounding lagoon. In a state of abandon now, it was once intended for fish farming.
Many side trails link the route to the main road on the other side of the island, that is Via delle Motte.   
At the other side of the Bacan there is another Punta, from where you can glimpse, among the thick vegetation, the former Ridotto, one of the many military buildings of the lagoon.

Return with breath-taking view​
Last stretch to reach again Punta Vela, from where you can glimpse in the distance the islands of San Francesco del Deserto and Burano. From the water-bus stop Punta Vela the view on San Francesco del Deserto among the barene (saltmarshes) is extraordinary.
It’s time to catch again the water bus line 13 to go back to Ricevitoria and continue your holiday in our littoral full of surprises!

  • Partner
  • Municipality of Cavallano Treporti
  • Via dei Forti
  • Veneto - Land of Venice
  • Venice Sands