Second Stop // Venice
Let me start by being totally transparent. Venice is not my cup of champagne.
The concept of an entire city floating on water did intrigue me. But I assure you that the large water rats, the haunting dolls in every store front, and the distinct smell in the morning, all but laid any budding interest I had in Venice, all the way to rest.
We stayed at Saturnia & International, which is named one of the 10 most enchanting hotels in the Venice Lagoon. It’s very Venetian decor is just like their website says, “unique.”
The location is great and it included free wifi & breakfast. Which leads me to my first TIP! Pick only three things that are necessities for lodging. It will help you narrow down the hundreds of hotels to choose from. We decided on free wifi, free breakfast with champagne, and AC. All necessities, I assure you.
You will obviously visit the Grand Canal, The Rialto Bridge, and Piazza San Marco, and see all the gothic beauty that is St. Mark’s Basilica, but I also suggest going back at night and having dinner in the piazza. It is stunning and each of the little restaurants have their own orchestra that takes turns playing.
When in Italy, you must try all the food and all the wine
but the most important dish you must try, is the very simple prosciutto e melone.
There is so much to do this one little city, but my first suggestion is to get lost! There are thousands of alleys, churches, canals, doors & bridges to explore. And, they are all lined with opportunities to shop, eat and drink. You can even take your wine to go!
Over 20 million people visit Venice each year & while their tourism crime rate is actually pretty low, Italy is high on the list of pickpockters. My second Tip! Rock a crossbody purse! It will keep your belongings close and make them hard to run off with. It also frees up your hands… to hold your wine.
My second suggestion is to skip Murano & hop a ferry straight to Burano. Now, Burano is definitely my cup of champagne and I would like to sit next to the water and dip Bussola (traditional Venetian cookies) in that champagne, all day! Burano’s brightly colored houses and laid back vibe, that extends all the way to the local cats & dogs, quickly earned this little island a permanent place in my heart.
Ciao Venezia, smell ya later!