Is the gelato any good in Venice? Italians might demur, but by international standards, the answer is most definitely yes. As always, remember that gelato parlors aimed exclusively at tourists are notorious for poor quality and extortionate prices, especially in Venice. Try to avoid places near Piazza San Marco altogether. Below are some of our favorite spots in the city. Each generally opens midmorning and closes late. Winter hours are more erratic.

Gelato Fantasy -- Since 1998, this tiny gelato shop has been doling out tasty scoops dangerously close to Piazza San Marco, but the quality remains high and portions generous. Fresh, strong flavors, with standouts including the pistachio, tiramisu, and strawberry cheesecake. Calle dei Fabbri 929, San Marco. www.gelatofantasy.com. tel. 041/5225993. Cones and cups from 3.50€ . Daily 10am–11.30pm. Vaporetto: Rialto or San Marco.
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Il Doge -- A definite contender for best gelato in Venice, with a great location at the southern end of the Campo Santa Margherita since 1986. These guys use only natural, homemade flavors and ingredients, from an exceptional spicy chocolate to their specialty, “Crema de Doge,” a rich concoction of eggs, cream, and real oranges. Try a refreshing granita in summer. Campo Santa Margherita, Dorsoduro. www.gelateriaildoge.com. tel. 041/5234607. Cones and cups 1.80€ –5.80€ . Open daily 11am–10pm. Vaporetto: Ca’Rezzonico.

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La Mela Verde -- The popular rival to Il Doge for best scoop in the city, with sharp flavors and all the classics done sensationally well: pistachio, chocolate, nocciola (hazelnut), and a mind-blowing lemon-and-basil. The overall champions: mela verde (green apple), like creamy, frozen fruit served in a cup, and the addictive tiramisu. Fondamenta de L’Osmarin, Castello. www.gelaterialamelaverde.it. tel. 349/1957924. Cones or cups from 2€ . Daily 11am–11pm. Usually closed mid-Nov–mid-Feb. Vaporetto: Zaccaria.

Nico -- Founded in 1935, this is one of the city’s more historic gelato counters, with a handful of chairs on the waterfront (these are only for “table service,” at extra charge). Quality is good (the mint, amaretto, and the signature gianduiotto, a chocolate and nut blend, are crazy good), but lines are always long in the afternoons and evenings, and service can be a little surly. Fondamenta Zattere al Ponte Longo 922, Dorsoduro. www.gelaterianico.com. tel. 041/5225293. Cone from 2€ –3.50€ . Mon–Wed & Fri–Sat 6:45am–8:30pm, Sun 7:30am–8:30pm. Vaporetto: Zattere.

Note: This information was accurate when it was published, but can change without notice. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.