Tourists and Venetians alike have donned high boots and taken to temporary raised walkways to slosh through the high water that has hit much of the lagoon city.
Venice’s tide forecast office said the water level peaked at 1.27 meters (4ft 3in) on Tuesday morning but warned that an even higher tide was forecast for after nightfall.
A top tourist attraction, the Ducal Palace, just off St Mark’s Square, tweeted that it was “open today, despite the exceptional tide”, and advised visitors to use the raised walkways leading to its entrance.
Many hotels keep disposable knee-high plastic boots handy for tourists. Venetians’ wardrobes often include over-the-knee rubber boots.
But even lower levels of the salty high water over the years take their toll on the city, eroding foundations of homes, businesses and city buildings.
Bad weather is continuing to dog Italy, with no real let-up forecast for several days.
In the same region of Basilicata, areas of the tourist town of Matera, famed for its Sassi former cave dwellings, were flooded after heavy rains.