Saturday 14 March 2015

Venice surprises

Our first stop on the long road home was Venice. We arrived at night with low expectations.  It had been raining and cold in Milan.   As soon as we exited the train station the beauty of the grand canal took our breath away.
From the outdoor deck on the local ferry, il vaporetto, Venice glistened, shimmered and glowed.  We agreed that the incredible view was worth every chilly minute.
Venice is blissfully quiet.
 It probably shouldn't have come as a surprise, but no cars means no traffic noise.
And while we joined many hundreds of tourists snaking our way along the narrow streets, or flocking to San Marco piazza and the Doges' Palazzo,

most of the time the paths and bridges were empty, 
with just a gondola or two, quietly slipping by.
The island of Burano was vaguely familiar to us,
but the intensity of the colours was surprising, as were the number of people taking 1000s of photos. Even photos of people taking photos.
Of course we got lost, but there are many signs pointing to the key landmarks, so finding our way through the maze of paths, canals and little bridges was surprisingly easy.
We even found an excellent gelato thanks to our friend Caroline, a Venice local.
But the biggest surprise for both of us was how much we loved Venice.
Almost thirty years ago we'd visited Venice on chilly, drizzly winter days.  We remembered only the dampness, the smells and the pigeons. Well actually, I only remembered the pigeons.
After a week of wandering through Venice we've surprised ourselves by becoming fans of this incredible city, in spite of the ongoing pigeon plague.
Venice was a surprisingly relaxed place start to our homeward journey.
Arrivederci a Venezia e salute a Londra.

Where we stayed
A basic but warm one bedroom apartment, in a handy location close to the train station. Definite bonus was that we didn't need to wheel our little bags too far over the cobblestone streets. Homeaway link CLICK HERE
Where we ate
We didn't find any fantastic places to recommend except for the Gelateria Nico, where the locals get their gelato CLICK HERE


  1. Lovely pics. Glad to hear you liked Venice and that you managed the pigeons. Surprisingly, they seem to be in decline in Kirribilli.

  2. Thanks for commenting Meaghan. It was a great time to visit Venice, not too cold with some lovely fine days. Very good to read about the reduction in pigeon numbers at Kirribilli.

  3. Stunning! You were so lucky to be in Venice when it wasn't the peak tourist season. Hoping to get there someday soon. :)

    1. Yes Kathy it was a great time to visit. I highly recommend early spring for avoiding the crowds.