A friend of mine from Veneto, about Venice: “It’s simple, either you love it or you hate it.”
The City of romance. Many Italian couples elect it as the city of their love and of their honeymoons. My mother’s eyes shine when she thinks back to her honeymoon, which has the capital of Veneto between the stages. She was so in love with the city that, when I was a child, she liked to sing me a lullaby that goes like: “Dimmi mia bella Venezia, se tu mi vuoi sposar…” (Tell me my beautiful Venice, if you will marry me).
That’s true, Venice is complicated, uncomfortable (I wonder, how people live without a car?), problematic for its particular morphology. The nice gentleman from whom we rented the apartment for 2012 New Year’s Eve, reveals us that Venice’s population is decreasing for all these reasons, as well as for the high cost of living. There are only tourists left.
But then, how can you not love it?
Venice is a city to walk and you have to take it as it is. Surprising, with its irregular beauty, where a calle (street) is never the same. Moody, a bit dirty some times, but fortunately we have never found high tide nor unpleasant odors.
It is normal to get lost in Venice. And we did it, but among the many small squares, bridges on the water and the claustrophobic streets, it’s nice to do it.
I got back pain because of the hours spent walking. I remember that Manuel had to carry me for a few kilometers, on the evening of December 31st, after standing for 4 hours: we celebrated the beginning of 2012 at the “Love” event, in Piazza San Marco, with a cascade of fireworks, exchanging our first kiss of the year surrounded by a crowd of about seventy thousand people.
We didn’t have a particular route to follow, and usually I am very organized.
However, Venice is small to visit by foot, and you are never tired of exploring it. It is useless to use the map, sometimes you can’t even found streets’ names. That is why my advice for Venice: just lose yourselves! Before you leave your hotel/apartment, maybe set a placeholder on Google Maps, to be sure to return to your “home base” without problems.Things to do in Venice
Things to do in Venice
Mmm, too easy to say that the gondola ride is romantic. But it really is, because you can admire Venice from a different perspective, traveling in a water maze.
Our gondoliere was excited to tell us anecdotes about Venice, while sliding in the channels.
With the day light it is wonderful. But I think it’s even better in the evening, when everything is quiet, intimate, and everything around you is lit only by a handful of lights.
Prices vary depending on the length of navigation. For the short journey, we paid 80 €. Before boarding, ask the price.
You can find gondolas who offer the tourist service almost everywhere. There are many behind the Basilica of S. Marco on the Canal Grande (so you can pass under the famous Ponte dei Sospiri!)Things to do in Venice
During our walks, we also came across the Rialto market 8address: San Polo, Campo de le Becarie, from 7.00 a.m. to 2.00 p.m.), where we found a tasty surprise.
Facing the Muro Rialto, the tastiest and most romantic fritto misto (plate of fried fish) ever eaten. A nice plate of fragrant fresh fish directly from the market, two glasses of white wine, little tables with wooden chairs, corroded by moisture, and the clear and cold winter sky. The best part was the view, the Canal Grande and the opposite shore. Spectacular.
How about a romantic getaway for Valentine’s Day? I hope to return this year for the Carnival…