Queen of the Adriatic Sea

We zipped over to Venice after our stay in Cutigliano. Okay, we didn’t zip. We got to Florence to find the train was full and we needed a reservation to get on. I was still trying to understand the Eurail pass at this time. The phrase “some trains need reservations” didn’t help me at all. The website didn’t help either.

We zipped over to Venice after our stay in Cutigliano. Okay, we didn’t zip. We got to Florence to find the train was full and we needed a reservation to get on. I was still trying to understand the Eurail pass at this time. The phrase “some trains need reservations” didn’t help me at all. The website didn’t help either. Also the amounts they provide with the pass for the reservation fees is not accurate at all. Justin and I grabbed our tickets at a kiosk, and learned any train in Italy needs a reservation. For first class, and I think most of the time second class cars. We found a seat in the food court and waited for our next train to arrive.

When looking for a place to stay I try to keep in mind three things. One, is it affordable? Two, it has to be close to public transportation. Three, it has to have good reviews. The place that fit all three was Palazzo Odoni. Plus breakfast was included, and I do like breakfast. It was about a ten to fifteen minute walk from the train station. (Which was very handy when getting our reservation for Switzerland.) Also the price was right for being in the center of Venice and for last minute.

Justin in his seat on our way to Venice!
View from our train window looking at Venice!

Thrilled we were in Venice finally we stepped off the train with all the daily commuters onto the streets. What a sight! Following Google’s directions, we walked towards our temporary home, taking in all the sights and sounds. There were a lot of them too! Water taxis, tourists, locals, canals, buildings with great architecture and restaurants were lining the streets.

Right out of the train station, excited to see Venice!
Canal one of like two hundred!

Palazzo Odoni is located in a fifteenth century palace that has been in the family for five generations. WOW! The room was nice. It had a big bathroom and a nice view. Palazzo had made their own map of Venice that included restaurants they suggested in the area. Of course they were the most expensive restaurants too. Most had good reviews when we looked them up on the web, but we didn’t have the budget to find out for ourselves. We headed out for dinner and if it wasn’t for the GPS in our phones, we would still be walking around in Venice. There are so many alleys and roads it can get confusing.

Our “street” we were staying on.
View from our hotel room
Pretty masks at a local shop, all handmade!

The next day was a busy day. After having a great breakfast at Odoni we headed off to the Jewish Ghetto. One thing that I was suprised about when looking into hotels and what to do in Venice is that people were complaining about having to walk. Other than the overpriced boat taxis, how else are people supposed to get around? I was thinking.

Pretty much the same view everywhere only different buildings! I couldn’t get tired of taking canal pictures.

First we walked around the St. Lucia train station and then up to the Jewish Ghetto. There is a lot of history there so make sure to visit. We continued walking down the narrow streets lined with shops in the Cannaregio district.

Awesome buildings scattered throughout Venice

As Justin and I were making our way to the Piazzo San Marco it started to sprinkle, and then rain. It was not a happy surprise as we were not ready for that. We made it to the Basilica di San Marco hoping just to go in, however there was a long line. So we stood out in the pouring rain and got inside luckily sooner than later. It is the most famous of the cities churches and has the nickname, “Church of gold” because of gilded Byzantine mosaics. Now for some reason, maybe to protect the mosaics, they will turn the lights off that showcase the ceiling. It is not worth it to go there after that, because you can’t see the gilded mosaics very well. Other than that, they have an exhibit area upstairs, and another couple areas downstairs that they charge to get in. The price ranged from three euros and up to get into those exhibits. Make sure not to take a bag when visiting, because they make you take it to another building offsite before you can come in. Luckily we did not have one.

One angle of the Basilica di San Marco
Basilica di San Marco
Gilded Mosaics in the Basilica di San Marco
Palazzo Ducale

After walking through we decided we should head back to our room to grab an umbrella. It was already too late though we were soaked! Eventually it stopped raining, and we got to walk over the famous Rialto bridge and into the San Polo district.

Another great shot of the canal and buildings!
Inside one of the Churches we went into.

Making it back to our room we rested, and I looked for a place to eat lunch. We decided on a place called, Trattoria Dona Onesta. This time remembering the umbrella.

Following lunch we headed to our last destination for the day, Gallerie dell’ Accademia. Now, it is suggested to spend 2 hours here, but I think one could easily spend six hours there. There was a long line and many school groups, but it is well worth it. It is said to be one of the most famous art gallaries in Italy. Only having one day to sight see, I told Justin that we had to see it since it was said to be so famous. One thing that confused us is the the location for all the art pieces with audio. They need to hand out a map, as I think we skipped like 10. The art and architecture was amazing. It was well worth the 6 euros each to get in.

Art from the Gallerie dell’ Accademia
Art from the Gallerie dell’ Accademia
Great art piece

Justin and I headed back to our hotel to rest our feet after our long day of walking around Venice. I think it is safe to say that we will be back here someday.

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