If I mentioned to you Venice what would be your first thought? Gondolas perhaps or pigeons maybe? St. Mark’s square, romance, beautiful hotels?
Every time I visit this city I get overwhelmed by a mixture of feelings and one of them is certainly nostalgia.
Venice is unique in the world for its charm: the place feels so mystical that as you walk through the darkness of the alleyways (the “canali”) and you get a whiff of that strong musty smell of stagnant water you can almost certainly expect to see a ghost hanging in there..there are many who claim to have heard the sighs and the moans of the convicts being led to their cells through the Bridge of Sighs…
Venice is flooded with tourists all around the year (infact this is the only traffic you will find as there are no cars on the roads) so much that sometimes it cannot cope as the city itself is not that big. On a sunny day you can often find ten of thousands of tourists walking around the city.
A place that I love in Venice is the Rialto fish and vegetable market always very popular with tourists but also with the locals.
A particularly busy time of the year is carnival which ends with the Christian celebration of Lent on Shrove Tuesday. This is a fantastic time to visit the city (if you can cope with huge crowds of course!): there are masks everywhere wearing fancy dresses and some are truly magnificent: it is like re-living the 18th century in Venice.
Walking from the station you can easily reach St. Marks square which is the only square in Venice as the rest are known as “campo.”
This square is simply magnificent and it is considered one of the finest in the world. On the square you will find the famous “Basilica di San Marco” with its belltower or “campanile”.
All around the canali of Venice you will find the gondolas which these days are only there for tourists. If you lived in Venice you would have your own little boat too to go by around the city. During Venice’s golden times the aristocracy embraced gondolas as a form of transportation when horses were outlawed from the streets of Venice.
Having a ride on a gondola is certainly very romantic.
This man seemed to love having pigeons all over him.. not sure I’d fancy that myself!
In St. Marks square you will find “The Florian Cafe'” considered to be the oldest Cafe’ in Europe; it was first opened in 1720 by Floriano Francesconi and named “Triumphant Venice” which was then changed to “Caffè Florian” after the name of its owner.
This place witnessed the splendour and fall of the Serenissima Republic of Venice and had many important people visiting over the years.
What’s interesting about this place is that this Cafe’ was the only one that admitted women, which is why Casanova chose it as his “hunting ground” in order to find new female companions.
Whilst walking around I spotted this man in a shop window making Tiramisu‘.. he spotted me drooling over it.. but I could’t help it.. could you?
This dessert typical from the Veneto region is just simply so irresistible!
Venice offers a variety of biscuits and pastries, so don’t forget to look for them too if you visit.
And of course if you fancy a romantic weekend there is nothing like a weekend in Venice to celebrate new love or an established one too.. because Venice is one of the most romantic cities in the world!