Thursday, June 18, 2015

The European Trip, Day 12 - Venice: Day 1

We left Monterosso al Mare around 9:00 AM I think, survived the narrow twisty road back to the Autostrada and then it was a boring 4 hours of driving from the west coast of Italy to the east coast of Italy.  We arrived at our hotel destination in Mestre, which is part of Venice, a bit ahead of schedule but we didn't have to wait long to be let into the apartment we'd rented.

I'll let Martha speak to the accomodations, they're quite nice.

We took the bus to Venice, a 20 minute ride with no hassles as we bought 24 Hour tourist tickets which get us unrestricted access to buses and vaporettos (water buses) in Venice.

After some wandering, we figured out how to board the right vaporetto once we left the bus station and it was somewhat smooth sailing to Saint Mark's Square.  I say somewhat smooth as the transmission on the particular vaporetto we were on sounded like was about to tear itself apart every time the skipper changed directions.

Sighing with relief, we got to Saint Mark's square and found it full of people, big surprise right?

The purpose of this day was to recon the Gondola rental sites, the meetup point for tomorrow's walking tour of Venice and just have dinner in Venice.  All these were accomplished I am happy to say.

Enroute to Saint Marks, late afternoon today

At Saint Mark's Square

The Bridge of Sighs

After we'd walked around Saint Mark's Cathedral, had a gelato break, and decided on gondola times; we decided on a whim to take the Vaporetto to Murano.  This is the island famous for glass makers.
Off we went.  Trouble is, apparently the one we picked was going to Murano but via the long way around Venice first!  Patrick also was having some issues with the smaller Vaporetto we'd boarded and so we decided to get off early at a station on the northern end of Venice at it's narrowest point.

Enroute to Murano

Relying on the GPS app on my phone, we walked down sometimes empty streets, making our way slowly back to the crowded areas of Venice.

We had dinner at the above restaurant, it was nice and quiet in that street

More walking, some pics

We soon arrived in the vicinity of Saint Mark's square and we saw that there line to get into the tower there was pretty small.  Up we went, by elevator, and we saw some really nice views of Venice from up there.

Sunset in Venice

We left the tower and wandered over to the Vaporetto station that would take us to the Ponte Rialto or Rialto Bridge.  It's near there that the rendezvous point was for the tour tomorrow and we wanted to make sure we'd find it.  Oh, and Patrick was doing better with the boats by now, must have been just hungry.

From the Saint Mark's Vaporetto Station

Evening/Night shots from the Ponte Rialto

Scenes of night time Venice, along the Grand Canal, as we motored via Vaporetto to the Bus Station.

Finally, the modern looking pedestrian bridge linking the train station to the bus parking area came to view:

We were to late to catch the last run of the 4L bus which would have taken us back to where we boarded from but the #4 bus (crammed with people) took us close enough for us to walk back to the apartment with no issue.

Full day in Venice tomorrow.  I hope you liked today's pictures.


RichardM said...

I really like the blue hour photos. Especially with the buildings all lit up.

redlegsrides said...

The blue hour eh? Nice.

SonjaM said...

Blue hour? That's what we say in German for picture perfect after sunset light. And it works well with your photos.

I have seen Venice too many times (worked once for a company that had a subsidiary in the vicinity) to get excited about it, however your pics make me want to visit again.

Outstanding photography, Dom.

Bob and Sharon said...

Bringing back a lot of memories for this Alaskan

Great pictures


redlegsrides said...

SonjaM, thanks very much, wish I could claim the credit but the camera does all the grunt work.

Bob and Sharon, thanks to you both as well. Glad I could bring up good memories.

David Masse said...

Venice was our first stop last year. I found it oddly nice not to see any wheeled vehicles in the three days we spent there. Stunning photos Dom.

redlegsrides said...

Thank you David, Sometimes its OK to be without wheels for a little bit.

ToadMama said...

Venice is a special place. I'd like to return one day, when it's not crowded. I found the number of people quite oppressive. But the colors and the architecture and the kitsche -- all those crazy souvenirs -- was fun to see. Thanks for sharing the pics from your visit. Brought back a lot of fond memories.