Friday, June 09, 2006

Venice – Day 2 (Tues, June 6)

Well today a did lots and I took about 220 pictures, so it’ll be a long post! I woke up at 7am to church bells ringing and decided to get an early start. I wanted to check out the Dorsoduro area since I didn’t get there yesterday. I wandered my way over and it was so nice to be out before all the other tourists, it was nice and quiet. Oh ya, that’s one thing I’ve noticed here, there are no cars or scooters, the only thing motorized are boats so it can be so peaceful and quiet in the smaller canals. Anyways, I made it to the south coast of Dorsoduro and there is a boardwalk along the water, sooo nice! I stopped at an outdoor café for my breakfast: a cappuccino and chocolate croissant, mmmmmm! Little birds came by so I fed them a bit, it was so relaxing and beautiful! Then I made my way to the opening of the Grand Canal near the eastern point of Dorsoduro and it is so beautiful there! I think it was one of the best views of the Grand Canal. I hung out around there a bit and made my way to the Ponte Dell’Accademia (the third of the 3 bridges that cross the Grand Canal).

I then walked to the Piazza San Marco again and I had to pay the 1 euro to feed the pigeons because it looked like fun. I got my little bag of corn and when you sprinkle it and put it in your hand they attack! It was so cool, they were all over my arms and head! I got someone to take a pic since it was hard to take on myself. I got a small poo on my arm but at least it wasn’t my head!

I made my way up the big bell tower in the Piazza called the Campanile. There was a small line-up but it was still only around 11:00 so it wasn’t too bad. This is a definite must if you come to Venice because the views are amazing and you can see all around!

Next I went to the Palazzo Ducale (Doge’s Palace). It had a courtyard and very large rooms with gold ceilings and murals everywhere! There was even the largest oil painting in the world on one of the walls, pictured below, in the apparently the biggest room in all of Europe. I also walked across the Bridge of Sighs into the prisons (named the “Bridge of Sighs” because of the noise the prisoners made on their way into the prisons!) The prisons were creepy and dark. These prisons are where Casanova was kept and he escaped by making it onto the roof (who knows how!).

After being inside for an hour, I walked along the boardwalk east from the Piazza and explored part of Castello, it seemed like more of a residential area and there is ship building going on there. I headed back towards the Rialto Bridge and found a café/bar along the way were I had a panini.

What’s next? I made my way to the Rialto Bridge again and bought a gelato (soo good!). The view around there is nice too! The one thing I don’t like about Venice are the crowds of people; So many tourists (including me I guess but that’s not the point!). I think next time I come, it’ll be in low season that’s for sure! After the Rialto Brige I walked back to the area my hostel was in and bought some tomato and motza salad and ate it on the water near the Ponte Degli Scalzi and headed back home since it was getting cloudy and I needed to get changed.

It started raining a little bit but I still felt like seeing the canals at night so I walked North this time to the area over looking the road that connects Venice to the mainland. It was very quiet and peaceful. The water looked so neat with the orange lights reflecting in it. I went down another canal to over look the Grand Canal and took a few shots. I was a nice end to the day even though it was wet, still pretty warm. When I got in I ended up talking for a while with the other three people in my room and we all got along really well so we decided to hang out the next day. During the night it poured and there was thunder and lightning too, kinda fun!


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