I was happy to enjoy short but peaceful moment in the morning in Venice, when the whole town still in a late Sunday sleep, only me and quite few visitors wandering around the empty, quiet alleys, but when the sun getting higher, another picture of Venice in my eyes – the peace, the calm and the beauty of the town tuned into a big chaos. Venice quickly occupied, badly invaded by thousand and thousand of tourists. It was in mid September and I was told – not the high season here, the crowd simply unbearable!
Grand Canal with Rialto bridge and traditional gondole…
Morning I forgot to buy a Pass for water taxi (vaporetti), then when the long walk with a heavy camera bag killing my legs, especially under sweltering southern heat…I almost gave up, until a nice French lady kindly remind me “Why don’t you get a Pass”. Good idea! I was in hurry to look for the kiosk where I could get it. I got 2 day Pass as I thought I might come back next day, but in fact I decided not to. Anyway with the Pass, you can take any water taxi to any stops along the Grand Canal – the most famous, most busy part of Venice and even to further island like Murano.
The Piazza – St Mark’s basilica, its bell tower and Dodge’s Palace.
You may notice a big crowd on the bridge in the photo. I was there, among them, in order to get a photo there, I had to queue in, to move step by step until I got a good place to take photos, but I had to do quick, very quick, otherwise the feeling of having someone standing, waiting behind is not really nice! I saw people do their selfie photos even with their baby’s pram risen up to the chest.
And here – the photo taken in rush while standing on the bridge I mentioned above.
The Grand Canal – the gondola and gondolier – ready for a busy day.
Gondolier with good voice could blow your mind with his songs in Venetian dialect.
Venice is surely the only largest free-car city in Europe where you can either walk or get a boat, no cars, no trucks, no motorbikes. The boats responsible for everything: tourist, wedding, funeral, goods carriage..
To get an hour ride on this traditional gondola, with a fancy velvet seat, handsome gondolier, especially if he could sing a traditional love song in Venetian dialect, the damage for your pocket will be between 80-90 Euro. It’s quite some amount, if compare to my 60 Euro to get a Mercedes van with driver in Blois for a whole day or 79 Euro for a day tour in Nice!
The traditional gondola – not only for tourists, but also for wedding, funeral or other occasions.
Not high season, many gondola taking a sunbath at the Grand Canal
The Grand Canal – 3,800 m long, 30-90m wide and average depth of 5m.
When I arrived to the station Venezia Santa Lucia, the main station with many souvenir shops, fashion outlets, eateries…and when I walked out from the station – the Grand Canal grandiosely appeared right in front of me. The scenery was simply indescribable: the green water, the blue sky, the white, red buildings, the golden sunbeams, the morning lagoon breeze… everything blew my mind, I totally forgot I need to buy a Pass, I blindly rushed onto the bridge nearby, continuously took a lot of photos and in hurry to discover a sleeping Venice.
One of the most famous souvenirs from Venice – the Venetian masks
The glorious Venetian masks can be found everywhere and at any price – from affordable 15 Euro up to hundreds Euros, like the one in the photo. The Venetian masks have a hundred-year tradition when people worn during the Carnival, to hide their identity, social status, in order to act more freely. I wish to get one, but with my travel plan, I’m not sure the mask will be in good condition till I reach the final destination or not! Next time then!
Standing in front of this window display – I was like colour-blind.
Later in the afternoon, when my legs hardly moved, I got a Pass and spent most time sitting in the water taxi, I stopped at every stations, I also went to another island in Venetian Lagoon – Murano, famous for their glass products.
One of many glass souvenirs shops in Murano.
Murano – much more quiet than Venice, not fancy architecture…
Murano – it seems not many choices for eating in Murano, but it could be the best to have a meal here, next to the canal in quiet atmosphere, absolutely no crowds around, lovely sunshine, gentle lagoon breeze. My feeling in Murano was way better than in Venice, probably due to the incident there – when having lunch at a tiny eatery, my seat was not far from the restroom and I’ve been stuck for few minutes in the restroom due the sudden power blackout, I was standing in total darkness, until someone opened the door from the outside.
Not like Venice, Murano more quiet, fewer restaurants along the canal.
Murano – to me like a film studio, with small houses, narrow canal, no gondola.
Murano very quiet in the afternoon – only few visitors walking along the canal, in some park or backyard, behind old houses – absolutely no soul, only the clothes in the photo, telling me people living here.
I felt a bit boring in Murano, time to go back to Venice, around 15-20′ ride on the water taxi due to several stops along the way back, and waiting for people on and off. I got a very good seat, right in front of the boat. Time to sit back, I did enjoy the ride and the sunset in Venice, but it was very windy, I felt not really well, luckily it was over soon.
The sun sat down, the last sunbeam gradually disappeared behind the horizon, most people probably rushed back home, the atmosphere in the lagoon seemed deserted and it made me feel a bit of tiredness, a bit of sadness…after a whole day of wandering around Venice and Murano. In that moment, I realised that I won’t go back here tomorrow.
The sun gradually disappeared behind the horizon, my first day in Venice came to an end.
Around the Grand Canal – the atmosphere was more lively
My last photo of Venice before I was heading back to Verona at 9:00 pm.
I don’t know why I decided not to stay over night in Venice when making the plan. Maybe I was thinking too much about the hotels in Venice due to the expensive rate, the tiny room…No regret not to see Venice at night. It would be an amazing experience, but anyway I felt happy that I made a right choice. Venice was not home for anyone, and definitely not for me. Time to say good-bye, Venice!