Bassano del Grappa
Castelletto di Brenzone
Chioggia & Sottomarina
Moniga del garda
Peschiera del Garda
San Pietro in Cariano
Santo Stefano di Cadore
Sottomarina di Chioggia
Valeggio sul Mincio
Venice Noventa di Piave
is love -- Paris is just an illusion. Make sure your gondollier can sing -- most don't. The one I recommend is Mauro. Ask around the other gondolliers and they will point you to Mauro.
is breathtaking. You know you are there when your train is the only thing separating you from the blue waters of the sea. Venice can be touristy, but if you stray off course of the tourist venues, the little narrow alley ways become adventures all of themselves. We met many friendly Venetians who were happy to show us their homes. I fell in love with the musicians who serenaded us while we walked down the streets. There are many bridges each with its own unique view of canal-side doorways. Pigeons are plentiful, yes, but no poopy on me. But watch for mosquitoes, I did get bit by one and I am still recovering, but being bitten by an Italian mosquito is charming any day! Ciao!
I agree about the Rolling
card and also the Venice Museo Card, which gets you into all the big and also all the little museums. You can get one at the big museum across the square from San Marcos Cathedral (I forget what the museum is called, but it's huge and directly across San Marcos Square). Going to the little museums will really get you away from the crowds and into local areas. We got lost and asked several locals how to get here or there and even though we spoke English and they spoke Italian, they knew what we wanted and on two occasions, we were personally escorted by locals to our destinations! The locals are super friendly, helpful, and will go out of their way to help you. And yes, don't be afraid to get lost. The whole place is interconnected so eventually you'll come back to start.
When you arrive in
go to the tourist info booth and get a "Rolling Venice" card. It's worth the price just for the money you save on vaporetto passes alone.
is a must-see for Italy.
Most accomodations are not near the train station, but that's a bonus. Since
is comprised of tons of little islands, if you want to stay in the heart of the city, then you would want to stay away from the train station anyway. The walk from the station to the first real bridge bringing you into Venice is great (you can't get lost, it is one winding road) but once you cross the bridge it can get confusing. Just be polite and ask a local for help (or point on a map) and you shoud have no problem. As touristy as it is, take a gondola. If you can find an open post in the middle of the day, go for it (most people try to do early morning or early evening) and because there wont be a long line, you may be able to negotiate the price. And of course, in the evening you must go to Piazza San Marco, one of the best piazzas in Italy to see the church, listen to live music, and have a good meal.
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