Wednesday, 16 September 2015

Vacation 2015 - Day 7: Venice! Part 1; The Gondola.

As the main reason for camping at Sottomarina was to visit Venice during our vacation, we decided to go there before deciding what else to see during our sole week in Northern Italy this year.

We set out on the approximately 30-40 km trip around the laguna late in the morning, and luckily did not have to sit in a queue going out of Sottomarina, although the traffic was very dense,

Just south of the suburb Mestre, we took a wrong turn because of signs pointing to Venice, but it turned out to lead to the ferries going over, and as it is possible to drive all the way out to Santa Croce, we made our way back through the landside suburbs before crossing the Via delle Libertà causeway.

After parking in a very old and very full parking building (where we had to leave our keys in the car for the sake of people having parked before us suddenly needing their vehicles!), we went for the city of venice, crossing a broad pedestrian bridge from the transport/parking area.

It didn't take long before we spotted the first gondola.

From very early on, the uniqueness of Venice was very clear. Where else in the world doo you see a scenery like this?

When planning this vacation, I early on decided that we would take a trip with a Gondola. I visited Venice with my parents a mere 6 years old in 1972, and I still very clearly remember entering a gondola and having to leave it again, because my parents foound the fare too steep.

Standard price for 40 minutes tour is €80 nowadays, and while I also think it is quite a sum, I did not want my kids to have visited Venice without having sailed in a gondola.

And I think the looks of wonder and joy on the faces of Anna and Lea was worth every cent. Sometimes reason should be left behind, and life be lived to the full extent, come the hangover tomorrow!

The following is a selection of the pictures I took on our tour of the backwater canals of central Venice (west of the Canal Grande):

I think this broad canal is Canal Grande

To the right is the Fondamento del Monastero

I think our tour began and ended just at the bridge that can be seen right ahead in front of the red building.
Although expensive, I think this is an experience one should not be without, especially when visiting Venice for the first time - which was the case for both my daughters and my wife. I you go by that rule, you should be able to sneak in at least two gondola trips; one when visiting with your parents, and one when visiting with your kids ;o)

We were extremely lucky with the weather: Not a cloud in sight, just high blue skies, and wonderful sizzling hot temperatures. Great, simply put. I remember my visit in 1972 as fairly hot, but clouded, and even greyish to some extent, and there is no doubt in my mind that the beautiful sunshine will add to Anna's and Lea's the memories of this, their first visit to a great historical European city!

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