Venice. One of the most talked about places in Italy, yet for some reason I hadn’t made my way over before. But as soon as I took my first vaporetto ride (Venice’s ferry metro you could say) I understood just why this city is on so many people’s bucket lists. It really is such a beautiful and unique place.
Venice is a lot bigger than you may think – you can spend hours getting lost in all of its small alleys. It’s also one of those places that becomes a ghost town in the evenings, which may also be why its such a romantic hotspot. As you will see in one of the below photos, there is noticeable flooding around town which makes you wonder just how long Venice will be around for. It’s ironic that the tourism industry is the biggest source of income for the town, yet the constant flow of cruise ships coming through only contributes to the erosion of its infrastructure. This was protested so much that a ban was passed just this month that will put a size limit on the cruise ships that come through starting next year. In any case, I’d suggest making it over there one way or another next time you’re in that part of the world.
Fun fact: Hemingway was a regular at Harry’s Bar, a spot founded by Giuseppe Cipriani back in 1931. The bellini that is so well loved (by yours truly especially!) is said to have been created there, and I made sure to enjoy it when I popped in. Remember the bldg in Paris I recently dined at that Hemingway used to live in for a few years too? Maybe a trip to visit all his old haunts would be a fun tour.
Where to stay: We stayed at Al Ponte Mocenigo, which is about a 15 minute walk from Rialto and removed from the craziness of all the tourists. This is definitely my favorite hotel I’ve stayed at in all of Italy (and all of Europe this past year) – not only is it affordable and the customer service is fantastic, but the rooms are super charming with wood beam ceilings, murano glass chandeliers and Victorian style decor.