Never one to renege on a promise, I dutifully sat and edited my Venice photos during a three hour delay at the airport (which was really uncharacteristically productive of me – *pats self on back*). Before you have a look, here are few little words of advice on Venice in general (more detailed posts on places to go etc are here) //
This Is A Stunning Time of Year to Visit / Nobody could walk through the tragically-sinking and breathtakingly-beautiful streets of this city without being struck by the eeriness of it. Add a touch of mist and a smattering of rain, and you’ll feel like you’re in a gothic novel (I consider this to be a good thing – if you’re of a different persuasion, visit during the summer, but pack sunscreen and expect to pay a whole lot for a room that’s large enough to make you feel a little less claustrophobic when you’ve retreated from the packed, sunbaked streets). On sunnier days at the end of summer, the fingers of sun streaming through the little streets adds to the sense of picturesque deterioration.
Search Anywhere You’re Going to Eat on Google / You may pay a fraction more to eat at the good restaurants, but the totally rubbish ones that you’ll find in a lot of the squares and around the bridges aren’t cheap and will make you wish you’d just spent a more money and a little time on research. If you’re lazy on that front, try my favourites: Da Ivo, Birraria La Corte (sit outside under a heat lamp – it’s horribly bright inside) and Bistrot de Venise.
Don’t Let Anyone on the Streets Sell you Any Services / Buying fake designer handbags from the pop up vendors is illegal, and the men who offer to carry your luggage from the water terminals will generally ramp up the prices based on how wealthy they think you are. Which leads me to…
Pack Lightly / You’ll invariably end up carrying your suitcases over a cobbled street in search of your hotel/the Alilaguna terminal – exercise restraint and you won’t end up with a pulled muscle as I did. As most the pleasure in Venice lies in walking around and slipping into museums, all you really need is a bunch of comfortable clothes and a couple of tops for the evening.
Take the Alilaguna From & To The Airport / It may not be glamorous, but it gets you safely from A to B and isn’t wildly overpriced ( taking a private boat from Marco Polo to Rialto costs around 250-350 euros – absurd for a half hour journey).
Take One of those On-The-Go iPhone Chargers / Have you ever read The Comfort of Strangers? It’s clearly set in Venice and that bit where the two main characters get lost in the maze of streets really rings true – while it’s all beautiful, it’s also bloody confusing. An iPhone map is a godsend, so make sure you have battery at all times.
DAY ONE – EXPLORING IN THE SUN WITH MY SISTER //
A DRINK AT THE AMAN VENICE /
DAY TWO – RAIN, RAIN, RAIN /
… AND FINALLY IN BED AT THE BAGLIONI (review to follow)…