I decided to start our tour of Incredible Italy in Venice. Venice is without a doubt one of the iconic cities of the world. Not everyone’s cup of tea, Venice is my 2nd favourite place in the world (I’m not original I know, but Paris is absolutely No. 1).
The first time I went to Venice I stayed on the island of Lido and had to commute across to Venice.
It was still magical. I was charmed by the canals, bridges, campo’s and piazzas. I was fascinated by the wares in the shops lining the route from the San Marco Square to the Rialto bridge. I loved the Venetian masks and planned to return to Venice for the Carnevale di Venezia so I could see the amazing masks in their full glory. Alas, Carnevale is still on my bucket list.
The next time I returned to Venice, it was as a tour leader on a training trip. I spent around 24 hours in Venice, this time staying in the heart of San Marco. Those 24 hours contained very little sleep and a lot of traipsing all over Venice, orientating my way from one end to the other and plotting and planning a walking tour. It’s amazing how well you can get to know a place in such a short amount of time. And it was cold. March in Venice is still winter and
COLD as. I think it was close to snowing the day we were there.
The last time I was in Venice I had an afternoon to myself. I’d had a rather torrid tour through Switzerland and Austria with a group of trekkers and hikers who were more mountain climbers than the bushwalker-trekker I am, and I needed to treat myself. While the rest of the group went off to book their train tickets out of Venice (it was the end of the tour), I found myself a table by the Rialto Bridge in a cafe overlooking the Grand Canal and enjoyed a carafe of Vino Bianco.
I’m now counting down the weeks till I return once again to this remarkable and beautiful city. The waterways and picturesque buildings, the churches and galleries are just part of the charm of Venice. The Gondolas and their Gondoliers, the cafe and restaurant waiters, the local people who call this amazing city home – they add to the charm and create a wonderful first impression of our Incredible Italy.
Join us on 25th June as we meet up in Venice for 25 days of Incredible Italy.