Gosh, Tod ~ I think I might have been as thrilled at that first really Venetian view -- the white building at quay Zattere(?) -- as you were to see it in real life! Great pictures of a place I've always wanted to visit and thanks for including the shots of your bordello opulent hotel room.
Damn, it's crowded though! Fumobici showed Venice in a rainy April, I believe, and what a difference to your throngs in September. Of course it's obvious why everyone wants to visit, but wow.
I love all your water and canal shots -- you really captured the romance. The St. Mark's pictures are a marvel, too.
Can't wait to see your report on the islands with the crass hope of finding out what you bought.
I'm so glad I went to Venice a long time ago. One of the few advantages of getting older!
I wouldn't get too happy about the big cruise ships being banned yet. Only those over 100,000 tons and in 4 years. Given how long it has taken to talk about doing something to prevent Venice from flooding, it's not going to happen in that time.
It's a shame because it is such a beautiful and exceptional city.
I realize you lost most of your photos, but I hope you got to wander beyond the Zattare/Dorsoduro and S. Marco sestieri I see in the photos that survived. Cannaregio and (particularly) Castello are both beautiful in their own ways and far less touristic.
I can't see your pics on my iPhone. However I always feel dumb when I recall going to Lucca. I went to visit a company based there. They took me to lunch inside Lucca. I climbed down their car. Ate. Climbed back. Saw nothing. Got a claim with these guys. Probably will never go back for work at least. Dumb. Dumb. Dumbo. Dumber.
fumobici - Yes, we did get way beyond those touristy areas but only by the water taxis. I will continue my report next as soon as possible.
bjd - we were shown clear evidence of the creeping waters. Steps that should be above the water are forever damned to growing green slimy seaweed. At first I wondered what the heck all those 'tables' were doing stacked in certain areas....now I know they are walkways for any flooding.
Bixa - Thanks so much. When posting I tried to find out what that building was and have. I have inserted it above the photo. Also added a link to Zaterre itself. Makes me want to go back...
An excursion to San Giogio Maggiore, Murano and Burano.
The island of San Giogio Maggiore was only a 10 minute boat ride across the lagoon from St Mark's Square. This tiny island has the Benedictine Monastry of Fondazione Giogio Cini. (Bought in 1951 by Count Vittorio Cini)and restored after napoleon had his artillery headquarters there. The interior of Andrea Palladio's beautifully proportioned interior of the church houses Tintoretto's 'The Last Supper' and ' Manna from Heaven'.
We took the elevator up to the top of the bell tower for an incredible view of Venice.
It was an eye-opener for me too bjd - Kerouac, I agree my phone does take very good photos but the latest iPhone just launched a month or so back probably has an even better camera so heres hoping... I get the feeling something is missing in the photos but I'll never know.
After a coffee at the nearest little cafe on the quayside (just in front of the snake in one photo) the launch is waiting for us and soon we are bobbing around like dozens of craft near us.
On arrival at Murano we are immediately ushered through a doorway and seated on some wooden steps facing a kiln. I can't believe this shabby little area produces so much beautiful glassware! A next lot of people join us and the old man in front of us explains what the 'glass-blower' will be creating in front of our very eyes. First he will make a prancing horse, followed by a fluted bowl. All done in a matter of minutes and quite astounding. The 10 minute show over with we are invited to shop at a 'special' discount of 50% on all items. Yes, yes, yes - we know what you're up to Mr.! I buy two little photo frames in bright coloured squares for my grandsons. Anything else would be smashed in minutes as most was very delicate.
Back on board we speed past fishermen trying their luck and long forgotten little island with decaying buildings.
BURANO is just as magical as I had seen it in photos. We find ourselves at a nice shady restaurant and order two different fish. After all Burano is called The Fisherman's Island. I admired the exquisite lace but found nothing I might like to give someone as a gift.
Burano looks nice with all the coloured houses. The fish looked tasty too.
I can understand that it's known for the lace, but what on earth do you do with a lace owl or ballerina? As for the glass -- once again I can admire it but would never buy any of it. Did most of the people on your tour group buy things, Tod?
A friend of mine went to Venice with her husband for her 50th birthday. On their return, she told us she had bought a chandelier of Murano glass but it was being shipped. When it arrived, her husband had to strengthen a beam in the ceiling to attach the thing, made up of zillions of little pieces that all had to be hung on a frame. I admit it looks nice in her place, even though it's not my style of decoration. And it must have cost thousands of euros.
Really enjoyed seeing and reading about your trip to Murano and Burano Tod . I have never been to the islands off Venice apart from the large one whose name escapes me but I do remember how wonderful the views of Venice were from it. The views from the Bell tower are wonderful and I enjoyed seeing the pictures with the mirrors - very effective. I do have some Murano glass though bought for me by a friend - its not so delicate but very beautiful and I treasure it. The lace work is so delicate . Burrano looks very pretty I like the colours of the houses.
I bought a pretty glass bead necklace on a jaunt to Venice (I was studying in nearby Udine), mostly red. I liked it and wore it a lot but have no idea what became of it. This was at least 30 years ago. No chandeliers for me.
I love the colourful houses. They are quite plain otherwise but it makes the area lively. I guess it works because there is a softness in the hues.
Thank you for commenting everyone. Bjd - Yes, a lot bought glass as Brits made up 95% of our group and only had three more days before taking the Eurostar back to UK and home. For me it was just the beginning of our month long holiday so carrying any glass would be a strain. One lady bought an enormous turtle or tortoise with another creature inside of it. I never saw it but it was pretty darn heavy and she had to carry it around for the next couple of days. Too big for a suitcase.
Lugg - maybe you were thinking of The Lido? I'm not even sure if that falls under the city of Venice or whether it is part of the mainland. We did a trip out there and were surprised to see buses and cars again.
Lagatta - wish I had seen the necklaces. Would have made an ideal gift.
Tod I loved Murano and am sorry we did not have the time to make it to Burano, it looks even more quaint than Murano was! We walked the island and had one of our best lunches of our holiday there.
We also went to a glass demonstration and we all found it quite amazing and wish we could have stayed longer to see what the expert was creating. At first we thought it was a bowl then a vase then we were unsure of what could be next but it was time to leave. I did buy a gift for Christmas for my mother and mother-in-law, glass earrings with a matching pendant for a necklace and I also bought them bracelets which I gave to them when we returned from our holiday. There were so many beautiful glass pieces and there were many people buying items.
This is a special treat for me as I never got to the outlying islands surrounding Venice, I'm glad you made and then took the time to share. I could probably spend an easy decade just boring into the little maze that is the main islands of Venice, so in my five days I never got to see this stuff. So, thank you!
At last our vaperetto approaches the Rialto Bridge where we hop off and find the market. Despite the rain a few people are still buying their vegetables and fish. I spot a counter laden with long sausage-like cellophane filled with herbs and spices. At about 3 euros each I decide these would make ideal gifts so buy 20 in a variety of concoctions. Most I see have chilli seeds in the mix. Armed with my one and only purchase we decide to get out of the wet umbrella crowds and take another vaparetto - we are going to go wherever it goes and view Venice from the water.
Leaving the Canal Grande we zig-zagged our way from vaparetto stops on either side. Even the rain could not stop the determined Japanese tourist from taking the obligitory gondella ride. Then we chugged into the open waters of Bacino di San Marco. I was amazed at the number of magnificent luxury yachts moored near what looked like fancy apartment buildings. imagizer.imageshack.us/v2/640x480q90/922/2BAZwh.jpg
imagizer.imageshack.us/v2/640x480q90/923/NieuO6.jpg It was very unpleasant weather so we went across the road from the vaparetto quay and had lunch at the first restaurant we found, namely The Belvedere. The service was wonderful and the food really good.
Later that evening we met Mich64 and her husband on the veranda of our hotel for a drink before scooting across the road to a small place - Restorante Alboretti. We arrived 20 minutes too early but with a bit of charm and persuasion to let us in with a drink we would sit and behave ourselves until they were ready for opening. The excitement of meeting Mich & hubby had us chatting like old friends right from the off! The food was what I call 'fancy' food and quite small portions, but sharing the anecdotes of our travels in the warm cosy restaurant made up for it. I ordered a tagliatelli and meat dish with a peach dessert. Mich might have more photos. We thoroughly enjoyed ourselves with this charming couple !
I never made it out to the islands either, as I only spent two nights in Venice. Every other time I went there it was a day trip, as I was studying in Udine, east of there, and took the train in, either by myself or with a group of fellow seminar participants. I did get to other places in Veneto and Fruili, and to Trieste, as I had friends in Pordenone (a town between Udine and Venice) and they took me places in their little car.
At the markets, other than the beautiful fish and vegetables, I liked the very practical bags of chopped greens or squash for soup or whatever.
There are far fewer stray cats than there used to be. No, they weren't killed - there was a major spay and neuter effort, and many kittens were adopted out as living "souvenirs of Venice". There are some stable colonies.
Lagatta it was a very special evening, we enjoyed ourselves very much. Mr. & Mrs. Tod2 are a delight! and when telling family and friends about our holiday upon our return, that meal together was one of our favourite stories to tell.
As soon as we entered the Hotel area I told my husband excitedly "there she is!" After introductions and hugs Mr. Tod ordered us cocktails and then we went across the way for a lovely dinner. I do have photos as well but I am having difficult navigating a new photo hosting site but hope to post something soon.
Tod we have so many similar photographs! We even have photos of that yacht and the arms coming out of the canal.
The funny thing is that you almost look like a family (reunion) group!
I remember once arriving in Amsterdam and queueing for tickets to the local train from Schiphol and Amsterdam behind an Afrikaans-speaking couple of a certain age who didn't speak much English, struggling to buy their tickets from the fellow at the wicket (locals there have smartcards). The railway employee immediately switched to slow, careful Dutch (which I could also understand, though I'm far from fluent and have to take care not to pronounce syllables in German or English).
The funny thing is that you almost look like a family (reunion) group!
That was my thought as well! Not even family necessarily, but they definitely look like people who've known each other a long time and enjoy each others company.
Tod, I am just knocked out by this report! I'm still frazzled from 13 hours of traveling home yesterday, but the beauty of your pictures shines through and your comments are sprightly and informative as always from you. I will be back to enjoy and give each photo its due, but have to say I would never have known those were phone pictures if you hadn't told us. Proves that it is the photographer and not the camera that makes a good picture.
Indeed. I glanced at the blog. By the way, there are some blog posts in English and in German. I think perhaps also in Chinese.
Interesting, and very sad how the original population of Venice is being "expelled to the mainland" (Mestre and the suburbs) but they went a bit too far in comparing their fate to those of the "native Indians" in the Americas.