EuroAdventure Day 22: Roma to Venezia

(posted by Emily)

Thursday 17 July
Daily Step Count: 24,246

Our trip to Venice on Thursday was a bit later in the day, so we had a chance to sleep in and head down to Campo di Fiori for breakfast. 
  
fruit cups
We ended up walking to the train station (per normal, though I tried to convince Rick to take the bus) and we got on our train. We had heard that Italian trains are a bit unreliable, and not always very nice, but overall, our experience ws fine. There were some delays at the stops, but train was nice enough. I just wished we hadn't been put at a table of four, and that the air conditioning worked a bit better :) 

walking up to the train

The train passed through Florence and Bologna, and it was fun to see the Italian countryside. Eventually, we were passing over the lagoon and in to Venice. 

Italian countryside--lots of sunflowers!

passing over the water

hello, Venice!
There aren't really chain hotels in Venice, at least on the main island. There is a Hilton across the big canal, but it is expensive to stay there. Instead, we opted for Hotel Giorgione, which we found on hotels.com. The hotel is a historic property, and has made a conscious choice to make you feel as though you are staying in a luxurious home versus a typical hotel. The decor is antique, but grew on us over the course of our stay. 



inside the lobby

You turn your key back in every time you leave, so it doesn't get lost.
our room


After a quick shower (we were pretty sweaty after hiking over to our hotel from the train station), we sat in the lobby to do a bit of research about what we wanted to do in Venice. Thanks for lending us the travel books, Lisa and Chris!


We decided to wander to San Marco Square and Rialto Bridge, and grabbed a quick falafel snack to tide us over until dinner. 




It is fascinating how congested the narrow streets will get, especially on routes to major tourist destinations. I guess that's the trade off for having no cars on the island!



We wandered through the square, taking in the sights.




the basilica
These towers mark the entrance to the square. It seems the griffon/lion guy is the symbol of Venice.

Had to commemorate the spot where Mr.  Green, my HS choir teacher, taught me the very important life lesson that there is no such thing as too much gelato :) Can't believe it has been 10 years since our trip here with FHS!


view from Rialto Bridge

A very popular thing for locals to do is stop for an apertif before dinner--it is a very social experience, meeting up with friends and chatting over a spritz. The spritz originated in Venice, and is traditionally made from sparkling mineral water, a bitter liquor (Aperol is the brand I saw used most), and sometimes prosecco. Ours had the prosecco, and were garnished with an olive, though you will often see oranges in spritz glasses, too. 

We found one of the more popular local establishments, Al Merca, and enjoyed a cocktail together. 



Dinner in Venice is usually eaten later, around 8pm. We stopped for pasta and sparkling water and enjoyed the sunset.




Of course, I had to finish off the evening th some gelato! Strawberry and dark chocolate this time. 


A low key night for us, but looking forward to more adventures tomorrow!

Gelato Flavor Inventory:
Stracciatella
Pistachio (x2)
Caffe
Dark Chocolate (x3) 
Mixed Berry 
Peach
Strawberry

--E&R

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