A Travellerspoint blog

March 2020

Let's get off the beaten track

Sun, Sept 29, 2019


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Managed to get my husband up early this morning - unfortunately, the sky was cloudy, so no spectacular sunrise, but we did get to watch a couple wedding photo shoots taking place in SMS (seemed to be Asian) as well as a model photo shoot. We walked back towards our room, passing across Rialto Bridge, then back to the room for breakfast.

Today we decided to see Scuola Grande di San Rocco. It's been on my radar for our last 3 visits and somehow we just never made the time to go. It isn't even that far from where we were staying! Well, it is absolutely gorgeous. The paintings on the ceiling by Tintoretto are divine. It can be a bit hard to follow along the 'map' they give you, so I just gave up and admired the paintings. They were in the midst of a set up for maybe a concert, so there was some setting up of chairs going on. Luckily, they have mirrors that can ease the strain on your neck of looking up. BUT - I was even more taken with the wooden carvings. I'm not sure who did the work but they were so detailed - there was one section that looked like a bookshelf but it was all carved. I can't even describe how gorgeous - look it up on google and make sure if you're ever in Venice to take the time to visit!

I believe right beside the scuola there was a Da Vinci exhibit, so we decided to go in there - it was actually quite interesting, but not much different from another exhibit we went to back in '08 in Rome.

Next we hopped the vaporetto and got off past SMS (not before I picked up some meringues and a mini sfogliatella pastry - we dropped the meringues at the room). We headed down towards the Arsenale, walking down via Guiseppe Garibaldi to the end, where we crossed a bridge to a very quiet residential section - hardly a soul around. I popped into the Basilica di San Pietro di Castello, before we headed over a different bridge and wandered back to Garibaldi. Again - not many people down there - I did come across a nice alleyway with some very colourful blankets out on a line! Made a great photo.

By now it was well past noon and we were starting to get hungry and cranky. There was a gelateria on my map that was in the area behind and SMS so I decided to go off and find that. It's called La Mela Verde (the green apple) and the guide book said you should try the green apple gelato. Also, they didn't have any that day but I did get an amazing scoop - I can't recall now - it may have been pear, but whatever it was, it was so good. BUT - we still needed food! We wandered a bit past La Mela and came across some restaurants and ate at one called Da Roberto in Campo san Provolo. Had - what else? - pizza.

So we finally had some food and were now happy campers, but still didn't really have a plan. We headed back towards SMS and took the vaporetto across the lagoon, past San Giorgio and got off at Zitelle - we'd never been on this island before, so we just wandered along - it being late afternoon on a Sunday there wasn't really much happening. We sat and watched a massive cruise ship go by for it's pass of SMS. We headed down an alley and came across what looked to be a spot where people stored their boats for the winter. (Guidecca). We decided it was a bit boring so we hopped back on the (very crowded!) vap at Redentore and headed back to the room to relax a little. The vap was quite crowded, but we eventually found a seat - chatted with some lovely people from the USA along the way.

I could also tell on that vap that I was starting to get my cold I always get when we are on holiday. Never fails. On the vaporetto I noticed my throat getting cloggy feeling...and I was sneezing. A sure sign.

We decided to go back to all Amarone for supper - I got the cacao e pepe (cheese and pepper) and hubby got the carbonara. Another great meal. Walked over to Rialto to try and do some long exposure pics, but the bridge was really really crowded, and the vibrations made my photos blurry (I managed to get one good one), so I gave up.

Back to the room to plan for our visit to Padua the next day.

Posted by u2traveller 10:48 Archived in Italy Comments (0)

17. Hot and crowded in Venice

Sat, Sept 28, 2019


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Morning started out with our lovely little breakfast at our B&B - Marco always has cereal, some breads/croissants with jams and Nutella, offered us cheese and cold cut meat, along with juice and coffee/tea.

With no real plan for Venice, we had to decide what to do today. I wanted to find the other marbled paper shops and hope for some luck finding colours I wanted. We headed towards an area that had a few stores close together - the first one was a bust, but at the second I managed to get a few sheets and hubs got a bookmark. I can't even quite recall where it was now (it may have been near Santo Stefano) - but we noticed a crowd of people in white outfits with instruments. So we decided to sit for awhile and see what was going to happen. It took about 10-15 min but then they fired up - it was a marching band! From - oh goodness, I want to say Brazil, but it was def S America. We sat and watched them for about 20 min - it was great fun, and quite interesting to stumble upon. Lots of folks watching. I want to say the band numbered about 50-60 - drums, brass, flag bearers.

For some reason unknown to me, we headed over towards St Mark's Sq - it was close to noon and we wanted to head across so we could head back to our room. It was so hot and humid and SMS was teaming. We took a deep breath and dove in - it was like trying to part the Red Sea - I got trapped in the throng and was trying to push my way thru - lost my husband in the melee but somehow he beat me to the other side! He must have skirted the edges whilst I stupidly went right thru the middle. We went back to the room to cool off then decided to head to a quieter part of Venice. But first - back to mask store to get my sun/moon mask, which is now hanging in my kitchen. We decided to walk the 'back way' to the train station - along the way we stopped for some fries and pizza for lunch, grabbed a gelato, popped into a few shops and into the church directly across from the train station (San Simeon Piccolo). We walked across the ped bridge and went into some of the stores in the train station. Next, we went into the church beside the station (Santa Maria di Nazareth). There was a little shop there where I picked up some honey gummies and soap made by Italian churches/convents.

We wandered a bit more and found ourselves at Accademia Bridge, where we watched a bride and groom come in to their wedding party on a gondola, and the not so spectacular view of a huge cruise ship passing by SMS. There was a beautiful sunset happening, so again we just wandered and found a restaurant where we got the special of chicken and spaghetti and potatoes and split between the two of us. I was still on the hunt for a glass bird ornament that I get one of each time we visit Venice - we found a shop in the SMS area where I got two - I was only going to get one by hubs insisted on two (since one of my birds from a previous visit broke a leg, I guess we can call it a replacement). I picked out an owl and hubby picked out a toucan.

Then we headed over to SMS to enjoy it at night, listening to the orchestras play before heading back to the room to plan our next day.

Posted by u2traveller 06:55 Archived in Italy Comments (1)

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