After spending the morning in Padova, my friends and I took advantage of the €4 and 25 minute train ride to Venice. I cannot believe I am fortunate enough to say that that afternoon was the third time I had the pleasure and privilege of visiting this one-of-a-kind city.
The first time I came to Venice was more than five years ago, when I went on a study abroad trip with my college that took us to several european cities, the first of them being Venice. I was so totally mesmerized, transfixed, and stunned by literally everything that I saw. The small boats, the color of the water, to the architecture, history, churches, shops, and so much more had me hypnotized with total wonder and awe. We went in May and the weather was optimally perfect, as it usually is at that time of the month, which only added to my love of the city. I was absolutely in love and totally obsessed.
My second trip to La Serenissima was three years ago, and was put together by my university in London for a few day educational “field trip”. I was so excited to visit this place again remembering the phenomenal experience I had the last time. My expectations were met by the city … however … going in March was a totally different experience than going in May. It was absolutely freezing in Venice, and the wind coming off of the water didn’t help improve the temperature. The mystery and wonder of the small allies and bridges were not the same, because I remember being so cold that I just wanted to get to where I was going. My enchantment was slightly lost on that trip, and that had everything to do with the weather.
Going into this trip, I was curious to see which of the first two trip’s impressions was the “correct one”: the glorious awe or the rushed feeling of wanted to get to my destination. As soon as we left the train station we were greeted by the Grand Canal and the sunshine, and much to my relief, I realized my first trip’s impression of the city was the correct one, and the weather had everything to do with that. August in Italy is wonderful, and that day the weather was optimal: high 80’s, sunny, and completely glorious. We hopped onto the vapporetto (what is called the public ferry) to get to Piazza San Marco, the most famous and frequented square in the whole city.
We had an overpriced iced coffee at a cafe in the square. Now that I’ve had the experience of going to one of these cafes, my advice would be to NEVER eat or drink at these cafes. I personally think the prices are insultingly high, and if there is a band or orchestra playing, there is a base fee of at least €5. Even if you have an unlimited budget, there are so many more worthwhile places to spend your money, in my opinion. After shamefully walking away from the cafe after we received the bill, we ventured to find a proper restaurant (that wasn’t crazy expensive) for our very late lunch/early dinner.
After a delicious lunch and some general walking, we stopped at the Ponte dell’Accademia for some photos and admiration, then we got back on to the vaporetto and enjoyed the long ride down the Grand Canal back to the train station. We waited for our train outside and sat right next to the water for about 30 minutes and chatted and admired our surroundings
I am so glad I had the opportunity to visit Venice again, even though it was only for a limited time. I feel so ultimately grateful and appreciative that I had the opportunity to visit Venice once, but three times blows my mind, and none of these visit I planned … they just came together that way! I forgot how completely obsessed I am with the city, and will look forward to my next visit, whenever that may be!
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