Eternal Venice, Italy

With little change in six hundred years, 435 bridges still link 121 islands, which still provides endless waterways and walkways (calli), to explore eternal Venice by boat or on foot.

Venice, Italy, Europe
A familiar scene

The romantic charm of Venice draws a staggering 30 million visitors each year – a figure that speaks volumes – although its population is less than 60,000.

Venice, Italy, Europe
Alluring Venice during Carnivale

Sights

Venice is as gorgeous as ever and holds a plethora of many beautiful sights – it’s not a myth. I’ve only listed a few popular ones here as this blog is already quite long.

Although some things have changed since the last visit in 2009, others haven’t.

Something noticeable on this visit in 2017 is the amount of Asian (especially Chinese) tourists here with even 2 Asian restaurants on Venice’s main strip. A McDonald’s and a Burger King also ‘grace’ the main strip. What a horrible surprise and very distraught about these fast-food establishments in this exquisite city, but not surprising as money talks…

The famous Golden Arches adverts are plastered on bins around Venice, spoiling this ancient city and is extremely disappointing – it’s as though Venice has sold its soul.

Venice, Italy, Europe
Venice morrow

Check out Venice’s most famous area where main monuments and sights are located in the main districts (Sestieri): Castello, Cannaregio, Dorsoduro, San Polo, Santa Croce, and San Marco.

Squero di San Trovaso

Spend enchanted days wandering around the alleyways and districts, getting lost, and taking loads of photos.

Maybe you’ll bump into the 17th-century Squero di San Trovaso landmark boatyard, still crafting and repairing Gondolas.

Venice, Italy, Europe
Gondola waiting for repair

Rialto Bridge

Always very busy but much more so during the world-famous Carnevale di Venezia, the Rialto Bridge offers a great vantage point for photos, if you can manage to squeeze your way onto the bridge.

Venice, Italy, Europe
Happy to strike a pose…

Evenings are a little quieter than daytime with many day-trippers gone.

St. Mark’s Square

This square is always busy but even more so during Carnivale and especially around 11am, when the costume judging takes place.

Carnivale, Venice, Italy, masks, costumes
Striking!

The elegant and aged square is a famous area of Venice but beware, this is also famous for ripping off tourists – even for just a coffee, prices are prohibitively expensive.


Jewish Ghetto

The Venetian Ghetto was the first ghetto established in 1516. Before this date, political restrictions on Jewish rights and residences existed. This is still Venice’s Jewish centre today.

As this area is just that little bit off the Venetian tourist trail and further out, you can experience pockets of quietness in this part of Venice, and so, it’s my favourite spot in Venice.

street art, Venice, Italy
Venetian street art

Typically, accommodation is also a little cheaper here and is better value-for-money.


Murano and Burano

Although we didn’t visit these two captivating Venetian islands on this visit, they’re worth a mention as both are great destinations, and thoroughly enjoyed this day trip in 2009.

Murano is world-famous for its glass-making craftsmen whilst Burano is renown for hand-made lace and its brightly coloured buildings.

Burano, Venice. Italy, Europe
Quaint Burano

Should you have time, these two islands make for a pleasant day trip (or longer stay) and the Vaporetto ride is relaxing.


Travel from southern Italy to Venice

Venice, Italy, Europe

Situated at the very north-eastern region of Italy and under a 3-hour’s drive to Slovenia, Treviso Airport is the quickest way to reach Venice.

A Ryan Air domestic flight from Lamezia Airport in Calabria to Treviso Airport only takes around an hour and a half.

Treviso Airport

Venice, Italy, Europe

Treviso Airport is approximately an hour’s bus ride to Piazzale Roma, in Venice.

On arriving at the bus terminal and catching the Vaporetto (public water bus) Line 1 in the Lido Direction, we stop at the ATVC Marcuola stop. Meeting Laura (apartment’s owner), head off to our new home for 9 evenings.

Tip:

The Vaporetto fare is expensive and rather walk everywhere. You can buy more economical travel cards.

Venice, Italy, Carnivale
Misty Venice

Where to sleep

Apartamento Maddalena Cannaregio is definnitely a room with a view!

The front gate leads into a well-manicured courtyard garden and up to massive timber doors adorned with brass knobs. Stroll through this door and an ancient columned stone-tiled area awaits.

Venice, Italy, carnivale
Courtyard area

On the right, is another closed but smaller quaint courtyard. On the left, a wide glass door frames a vista of the Grand Canal with Gondolas gliding quietly past – a living Italian Renaissance painting.

Pontoons lead out over the Canal – a great spot for taking photos.

Venice, Italy, carnivale
View to the Grand Canale

A set of high wrought-ironed gates, more heavy timber doors, and we’re at the entrance to the apartment’s foyer.

Venice, Italy, carnivale
Steeped in history – entrance to the apartment

Leading up several very aged stone steps and through to another heavy timber door with brass ancient handles, opens into the kitchen and the authentic 14th-century Venetian apartment. A magnificent rendevous with stepping back in time.

Venice, Italy, carnivale
Just gorgeous!

Ornate plaster adorns ceilings and walls. Authentic original art embellishes most walls. Laura (owner) mentioned restoration is necessary every 5 or so years, as Venice’s dampness eats into the paintings and plaster.

Venice, Italy, carnivale
Another view

From the lounge room window, the ever-changing view of the Grand Canal is gorgeous and resting with a coffee whilst watching Venice go by is witnessing a moving painting.

Venice, Italy, carnivale
Room with a view – Grande Canale from our lounge room

The nine-night stay is for my partner’s birthday as I wanted a special authentic Venetian apartment, with a memorable view. The location is also excellent.

Carnivale, Venice, Italy
Living in an art museum

Tip:

If you use a non-Euro credit card when booking with Airbnb, take note of your final charge. Airbnb charges an additional 3% conversion fee on top of the displayed charge, and is hidden in the final total and not itemised. Emailing Airbnb regarding this extra charge, I’m still waiting for a response.


Where to eat

Although the apartment is fully equipped, still eat out a lot.

If you want to save money, then stand up and eat lunch at a restaurant/Bar, as sitting down at a table is much more expensive.

Spaghetteria 6342 a le Tole Pizzeria

Definitely my first choice for Venice!

Had the best meal in Venice by far at Spaghetteria on Barbaria de le Tole, Castello 6342, so returned again as this restaurant is an addiction.

The glassed kitchen with busy chefs and the continuous opening door to the kitchen is hectic throughout the night. If you don’t reserve a table, you won’t get in – it really is that busy.

As cuttlefish and its ink are one of Venice’s trademarks, try the freshly made scrumptious Sepia pasta with scallops or the delicious Tagliolini Gamberoni. The pizza is also great. The pasta dish with veal cheek so tender that it just falls apart, washed down with a bottle of Merlot is divine. Follow this up with the most wonderful Tiramisu laced with berry coulis and topped with a flake of chocolate.

The service is excellent, the food is amazing, and the ambience is pleasantly loud and unpretentious.

Live music – musician with an instrument – plays each night and everything flows smoothly in this very professional restaurant. All pasta is handmade in-house.

Magnum Venezia

On Malileo SAS di Camoli D and for €5, experience a Magnum ice-cream drizzled with wonderful toppings, covered with anything from Goji berries, chocolate chips, nuts, M&M’s, and more. Wash your ice cream down with an espresso. Super busy and with a little side-show while watching staff create your personalised Magnum.

Carnivale, Venice, Italy, Magnum
Famous logo

Capatoast

Excellent café on Via Cannaregio, 3102 that sells only massive toasts with delicious fillings. A huge meal in itself, you won’t need anything else.

Small but super busy with locals and foreign tourists, as it’s one of the cheaper eats in Venice for toasts, hot chips, Cappuccino. Great staff and music in this cute little modern café.

Vyta Santa Margherita

At the Venezia Santa Lucia railway station, enjoy a wonderful coffee, snack, cake or pastry, which is the cheapest in Venice.

Relax 8 Caffe Caffetteria

Loads of seating and free wi-fi in this new, clean, and modern café at Venezia Santa Lucia railway station. Good coffee, cakes, and snacks. Toilets are free if you buy something.

Venice, Italy, Europe
Lost in Venice

Pasqualigo Ristorante-Pizzeria

The first night’s meal in Venice and on Cannaregio 2288, it isn’t too bad. It seems that many restaurants are either run by Pakistani, North Africans, or Chinese. What happened to Italian Chefs?

Good pizza, nice dessert, and half-litre carafe house wine for €20+, with good service in a nice restaurant. Don’t forget the 10% service charge at the end.

Typically, in Venice, you are charged Cover and Service charges. Some establishments charge one or the other, and some charge both – check the bottom of the menu.

The Wild West

For a burger or fix other than pasta or pizza, this is your place on Strada Nuova, 3660/A. Decorated in wild west fashion, if you can get past the country music of which I’m not a great fan, then you can have a pleasant meal.

Good service and food: wine or beer and a meal for under €20.

Majer

A franchise found throughout Venice. Serves great coffee, pastries, snacks, muffins, and provides a seating area.

Bar Ciak

On San Polo, 2807/C, prices advertised on the outside window are not the same as when you sit down. Regardless, it’s a lovely pub and not too dissimilar to an old-world English pub.

Very busy with tourists offering house wine and an average Panini in warm and cosy surrounds, on this chilly and overcast Venetian winter’s day.


Supermarkets

Venice is home to several supermarkets.

COOP Supermarkets

Pick up cheap pre-made yummy eats, groceries, and most things you need at this COOP on Via Cannareggio 3660, if you’re in a self-contained apartment.

On Via Cannareggio 1976 is a second COOP and also well-stocked, offering almost anything at much cheaper prices than Venice street stalls.

Despar

Good supermarket on Cannaregio 1939/1952 to stock up but a little more expensive than both COOPs.


More shops

A few shops are worth a mention.

Art Marco Venice

You can’t leave Venice without buying the obligatory mask, but beware, many Chinese copies are sold in the main tourist streets.

This tiny shop on Salizada S. Antonin Castello 3486, is barely large enough to squeeze four people standing. Masks are handmade from papier-mâché.

Kastroit (an artist that paints the masks) is charming, friendly, and looks after you whilst selling you a mask at a fair price, which comes with a genuine receipt and guarantee.

Computer Fix

Thought I’d throw this one in as this was the only place open to get some documents printed from a USB stick although not cheap. The shop is on Castello 6662/A.

Libreriaa Toletta

Selling Italian books, this shop on Dorsoduro 1213 also sells greeting cards if you’re desperate for a greeting card.


Reflections

Having first visited Venice in 2009, I can’t believe the changes eight years later.

Carnivale, Venice, Italy
A Venetian painting around every corner

One main change is that many of the previously Italian-run restaurants are now run by Chinese, Albanians, or Arabians. What happened to the Italian chefs in Venice?

Most of the food around the popular tourist areas are the same expensive prices for the same tasteless meals and very disappointing.

Carnivale, Italy, Venice, street art
Love the expressive street art – depicting one of Venice’s mayors

Luckily, we can buy fresh ingredients to make meals in the self-catering apartment.

Carnivale, Venice, Italy
Russian model – wedding dress photoshoot

Trieste day trip

A train trip to Trieste is a perfect escape for the day. Especially, as Trieste is another stunning city and only around two hours east of Venice.


Leaving Venice

Saying goodbye to Venice is always hard as is the kilometre-plus walk lugging gear to the bus station, to catch a comfortable bus back to Treviso airport.

Albeit small, Treviso’s Departures does offer a few eateries for pizza slices, coffee, and Brioche.

Returning to Cosenza, Calabria

Ryan Air is on time – always a great start and we arrive at Lamezia Termine on time – amazing.

Great to be back in Cosenza and love the feel of this city. The way people chat the day away and generally live life.

The southern Italian warmth is as though someone flicked the Summer switch on. Lovely and sunny, and a great way to end a fantastic Venice jaunt during Carnivale.

Visit Nilla’s Photography for more global images. More posts on Italy.

56 thoughts on “Eternal Venice, Italy

Add yours

  1. Beautiful Venice … it would be great to visit this place … one day. It was on our list in 2020 – and we all know what happened then 😔.
    I love your photo’s and all the little titbits you put out in your post. How amazing are those costumes and Venice in the mist – it looks like a movie!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Nilla,😊 no worries, I took a look, thanks for sharing the link, those costumes are just jaw dropping, it would be rude ‘not’ to stare lol, and you captured them really well – fabulous!
      Cherryl💫

      Liked by 1 person

  2. “Venise serait ma fin.” Venice would be my end. Corto Maltese in “L’ange à la fenêtre d’orient” (I think you can understand French, the Italian would be very similar.) Corto is a character by Hugo Pratt an Italian Graphic novelist.
    Venice is very enchanting. I think I told you a cousin of mine rents a house there every summer…
    Buona giornata amica mía.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I was certain I responded to your comment but have no idea where it went as it didn’t save – WP!
      Indeed I can, the 6 years of French at high school left a scar in my brain, luckily.
      Yes, you did but didn’t say where exactly – would be interesting to know which area of Venice.
      Buona sera

      Liked by 1 person

    2. Et bien c’est très bien… On va pouvoir continuer en Français? 😉 I suspect Italian should help your French if you doubt a word.
      I don’t know where in Venice TBH. It just called my attention to have such a love of Venice to go back every year…
      Bonne journée…

      Liked by 1 person

    3. Ha, ha, I disagree and find Italian grammar harder than French grammar – too many ‘moods’ in Italian grammar! 🤣
      Ah well, anywhere in Venice is pretty cool – really want to travel again.
      Ciao

      Liked by 1 person

    4. Ha, ha! Have I coined a new term? 😉

      Trying to take 5 weeks’ leave end of June to July to do a whirlwind trips to Sweden, the UK, and Italy, but see whether I can get this time off from work and whether the world has settled down with Omicron – fingers crossed!

      Liked by 1 person

    5. You most certainly have. A term many of us Gypsies can relate to. I suspect June to July will be a good bet. Even if “da thing ” is not fully controlled, there is too much money at stake for tourism and European mental health (June to August are the only decent months there weatherwise) to lock up. I’d say “go for it”.
      (I’m gonna start looking at Paris options…) 😉🤗💕

      Liked by 1 person

    6. Yes, but you’re a lot closer to Paris than I am to Europe but definitely keeping a close eye on things.
      Countries are opening up again because of the economic impact so far and remember, it’s the virus “we all have to get”.

      Liked by 1 person

    7. It’s true. Paris is only a 11-12h flight. I guess for you it must be 24+? When we went to Singapore, the flight was 30 hours… I was thinking to maybe do stopovers next time…

      Liked by 1 person

    8. Well…that depends on the cost of the flight. The cheaper the flight, the longer the journey as you wait in transit for longer. You Can do Brisbane to Rome in 22 hours with one stopover in Singapore/Dubai/etc. – depends on how long the wait is and I always try and get minimal wait time. The problem with this is that if your first flight is late, there is a potential you’ll miss your connecting flight (but you already know this I’m sure). I guess Paris would be another hour or so on that flight time.
      Thinking of a jaunt in Oz?
      Had to salvage your comment from Trash – it seems that all your comments end there now. Bizarre and also annoying as this one came in late!

      Liked by 1 person

    9. I know about the long flights. TBH, I don’t do stop overs. Getting too old for that. I guess that’s what lifelong savings are for.
      I’d always thought OZ was too far away in time. But after Going to Singapore a few years back, I think it might be feasible. Maybe a combined Asia/Oz. We’ll see.
      Sorry about the trash. Looks like WP doesn’t like me? 🤣
      Be good.

      Liked by 1 person

    10. I’m sure Qantas introduced a non-stop flight from the EU to Perth a few years ago and think it takes around 18 hours but I could be wrong.
      Guess that’s why Australians travel for a long time as we’re such a long way from anywhere, except NZ and Asia. 😉
      Really strange as this comment went to Trash but the other comment didn’t – clearly WP doesn’t favour you! 🤣
      Stay safe

      Liked by 1 person

    11. I will try to stay safe from WP.
      There must have been some direct flights at one point. Look closely at the prices. I’m not sure the long stop-overs and associated discomfort are worth it…
      Cheers “Mate”. 🤗

      Liked by 1 person

    12. Ha, ha, WP has you pegged so doubt you’re safe. 😉
      No, only direct flights from WA I believe. It’s good to get off and stretch the legs after being cooped up in the germ capsule for hours.
      Cheers back to you! 🤗

      Liked by 1 person

    13. Agreed. Though maybe not all the way but it’s all right. The thing about the health pass in France was its hypocrisy. The government was too much of a coward to make vaccination mandatory so they turned the bar and restaurant owners into cops. Anyway. let’s start thinking trips… A warmer thought.

      Liked by 1 person

    14. The same thing happened here but the bar and restaurant owners bucked up.
      Indeed, I’m already thinking about travel – it’s been too long. 😉
      Weird this comment came through late even though it’s dated 16th as it was only visible today but still ended up in my trash folder again – so random!

      Liked by 1 person

    15. If I understand correctly, the bar and restaurant people refused to play cops? That’s what the French ones did. In other words, in France they said ok. I will look at the pass, but I will not check ID’s. We ain’t cops…
      (Must be an Ozzie saying…)

      Liked by 1 person

  3. My parents took me to Venice somewhere around 1957-8 and I have not been back but it’s not a place you forget. Very sad to hear that fast-food has been allowed in. It seems sacrilege to me. I shall always think of the film “Death in Venice” as a reminder. What is being done to save Venice from the sea? I know it is at great risk. Thanks for your update!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Wow, I wonder whether it has changed much since then and no, Venice is definitely not a place that you forget. I’ve been several times now and always find something new or a hidden gem.
      It is sacrilege and especially with the good Italian restaurants off the main tourist drag, you wonder how the fast-food chains make any money there – I’ve never seen that movie and must look out for this one…
      I believe they started building gates back in the 1980s but don’t think that worked well so they’re building the Mose – not sure how successful this is either.

      Like

    1. Hi Michael
      Totally agree and also corruption. Spectacular Venice is sinking each year and with all the billions that pour into the city, you’d think this problem could be fixed – tragic!
      Cheers
      Nilla

      Like

  4. Thank you for bringing me back fond memories!!! I’ve heard they are going to put (or they did already), some restrictions/limitations for visitors. Not very sure if it’s only about money, or duration..
    Cheers, xx

    Liked by 1 person

    1. No problem at all and happy that you enjoyed this walk down memory lane.
      Yes, think that Venice stopped the cruise ships for a couple of years but not sure whether they’ve started again and also heard about the restriction of tourists per day. I think that in the end, it’s all about the money not what locals want. Although there aren’t too many original locals left as they scarpered in the 1950s to the mainland, I’m told.
      Have a great weekend!
      Cheers
      Nilla x

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Your post is fabulous with so much good, useful information and photos that take me there immediately. I would love to see Carnivale there, and to stay in the rooms you have shown us. What an interesting city that I’ve only seen once before . . . and that was almost 50 years ago. I might not recognize it now!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Bert and Rusha
      Thank you for the wonderful feedback!
      I noticed that the main tourist areas of Venice changed but not the back streets so much. Venice is one of my favourite cities in Italy and if you could remove even half of the tourists, it would be even better. 😉
      Not sure if you saw my article on Carnivale – a feast for one’s eyes and I absolutely loved being there with my camera.
      Hope you guys are well.
      Cheers
      Nilla

      Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply to Oh, the Places We See Cancel reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Create a website or blog at WordPress.com

Up ↑

%d bloggers like this: