I still love Venice
Even though it’s loaded with tourists, ridiculously expensive, and (at the moment) unbearably hot, Venice is still one of my favorite cities. Every time I’m here I find something new to marvel at within the nooks and crannies and hidden alleyways that crisscross this city on the water. Daily life moves at a brisk pace along the canals that Venetians rely on for everything from garbage disposal to ambulances. For all this, Venice is, in all respects, the most unique city in the world.
Exiting the train station we got our first glimpse at the Grand Canal, Venice’s main artery that pulses with boats of all sizes to its heart, St. Mark’s. We walked to our wonderful hotel, Venizia B&B House, and paid €150 for a triple (€50 each) where we were treated to a meticulously cared for friendly little place a tad outside the city center. The rest of the afternoon was spent wandering the streets and doing what one should when in Venice, getting lost. Before our delicious meal at the reasonably priced, local restaurant Bentigodi’s, we bought a bottle of wine and a few plastic cups and drank in the square while watching the locals chat and enjoy the evening. After that, we headed down to the only real bar district, Campo Santa Margherita and had a few drinks at Cafe’ Blue, but Venice does not have much of a nightlife to speak of so this was a quiet night for us.
The next day we headed to the Doge’s Palace, St. Marks square, and spent €16 each for a 12 hour Vapporeti pass and sat back to let the city, with its maze of canals, show itself to us. Later we headed to Murano and browsed the glass shops with their €40,000 chandeliers. The heat finally overtook us and we sat on a bench in the shade to watch the multitudes of tourists heading back to their cruiseships and air conditioned hotels.
As I write this, I’m sitting at an internet cafe next to the train station awaiting my train to nearby Ljubljana, Slovenia looking forward to the next time I visit Venice and chances are it will stay much the same as I left it.