Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Italy Birthdaycation Part 3: Venice

It was on our trip to Venice that we first experienced the excitement of trains running late, missing your connecting train, running through train stations with all of your baggage and breathing a sigh of relief when you finally make it onto the last train. In Italy there are a few different types of trains, the regional, intercity and high speed. The high speed trains require a reservation and you are given an assigned seat. They seemed to always run on time. The regional and intercity - not so much. (Also, on the regional trains there were no assigned seats, but on the intercity there were.) Which made it interesting when our regional train from Barga was late, so we missed the next regional train in Lucca which would take us to Florence where we were to catch the high speed train to Venice, on which we had reserved seats. Luckily when we arrived late to Lucca there was another regional train heading to Florence, so we just hopped on, and barely made it to our train to Venice.

When you walk out of the train in Venice this is what you see:

Venice is beautiful, with all of the canals and old buildings. We joked that it felt like we were in Disney World, except that it was weird because people actually lived in these buildings, they weren't just facades.

Our favorite thing to do in Venice was just to walk and look around at everything.

We took the vaparetto down the Grand Canal, walked across bridges and generally just enjoyed being in Venice.

We also went to St. Mark's Square and Basilica, and the Doge Palace. This area was really crowded, which I didn't love, but the buildings were impressive.

We also spent some time in the gardens on the eastern side of the island. I could have spent a lot more time in this area, as it was much less crowded.

We went to the island of Murano because we heard about the glass blowing that they do there, but we went not really knowing what we were doing or where we were going, and apparently there are some places that are legit while others are a ripoff. So, not knowing the difference, we mostly just walked around. It was a lot like the main island of Venice. I'm sure if you know which places to go, it would have been a lot more interesting.

We had some interesting meals in Venice. Derek ordered a spaghetti with lobster one night. Before the food came out they brought him this:

To which he responded, "Uh oh."

I ordered something called cicceta, which I head was like an appetizer sampler, but really it was just a bunch of seafood. Squid with tentacles, whole sardines, and a bunch of other fishy tasting food. I guess it was authentic, but it taught me to be a little more careful about ordering items on the menu that don't have a description.

Overall though, Venice was really pretty. I think the best thing about it is just walking around and enjoying the scenery. I would have love to have rented a boat and just spent an afternoon boating around the island. But we only had 2 days there, and I feel like we squeezed a lot into those 2 short days!

1 comment:

Callie Nicole said...

Venice is beautiful, what gorgeous photos! I so want to go to Italy someday. :-)