venice, part two

After a dreary travel day and grey skies on our first day in Venice, we were excited to see the sun shining on our second day.

Our hotel (Hotel Columbina) with sunny skies.

We decided to head out on a walk toward the market area and, as always, enjoyed the sights along the way.

The sunshine really brought out the lovely colors of the buildings.

Rialto Bridge

We got to the market in late morning (not wanting to disturb our leisurely morning routine), so we missed the hustle and bustle. But we still got to see everything and get a taste of what it was like.

Look what I found!

Next, we walked to the Friar Church. This was an interesting church to tour, since it was done in a completely different type of architecture than we had been seeing for days – Gothic. The exterior is rather plain, but the inside was quite interesting, and had a number of impressive sculptures (but no photos allowed).

Then we walked to the northern end of the Grand Canal.

The reason we headed up to the north end of the Grand Canal was because we wanted to take a leisurely vaparetto ride down the Canal to see all of the sights. We had sort of done this on the day of our arrival, but that day we took the express boat, and since it was cold and raining, it just wasn’t the same.

The vaparetto (boats that take you up and down the Grand Canal) stops have these floating shelters to wait in.

That's the Campanella (clock tower) on the left, St. Mark's Basillica peeking through the middle, and the Doge's Palace on the right.

After reaching the southern end of the Grand Canal, we decided to visit the Doge’s Palace. (The Doge was the elected leader of Venice.) To be honest, neither of us were too enthralled by the palace. By this point, we had toured so many impressive churches and seen such interesting architecture, and this one just didn’t too much for us.

These are some of the original columns that supported the palace. During a restoration effort, they were found to be structurally unsound, so they were replaced with replicas. Each one has its own intricate, unique design carved into it, telling stories.

View through the Palace courtyard to the connection to St. Mark's.

Our final stop for the day was to the Campanella, the tall clock tower on St. Mark’s Square.ย  We enjoyed some amazing views from the top.

St. Mark's Square

When we got back to our hotel, the man at the front desk asked us if we were interested in sharing a gondola ride with two other couples. I hadn’t quite yet convinced Craig that a gondola ride was a must-do (although most certainly it was!), mostly because they’re really expensive. So, this was a good opportunity to get the experience but do so a bit more economically. The gondola picked us up from our hotel’s own little dock and we toured the small canals for about 45 minutes. We were both really glad that we did this, since we saw a very different view of Venice than we could obtain by foot.

Our gondolier (and one of our boat-mates).

Returning to our hotel.

After taking a bit of a break, we walked back to the place we had tried to go to for dinner the night before. Thankfully, it was open this time! Our meal was pretty good, although Craig’s scallops were a bit disappointing. One great treat was the complimentary limoncello as an after-dinner drink. Yum!

If that seemed like a long, busy day (it took me over an hour just to set up this post!), it was. This is what Craig looked like at the end of the day!

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12 Responses to venice, part two

  1. Brandi says:

    I’m dying to go to Venice now!!!! I’m loving all of these posts. I just need to get the kids out of the house so we can go. ๐Ÿ˜‰

  2. Christine says:

    Wow! WOW. LOVE Love love this one. As I read this, I was thinking that it was a *long* day… and wondering how exhausting it must have been… then I saw Craig. I think I would be the exact same way. It looks AMAZING though… and well worth the exhaustion!

  3. Elizabeth says:

    Sigh… so much beauty!!!
    I’m glad I’m not the only one who grew tired of all the beautiful churches. It seems so wrong to say when your among such beauty, and yet… it’s true ๐Ÿ™‚

  4. Rain says:

    Beautiful pictures! Made me miss Venice so much!! Thank you so much for sharing them.

  5. Zoe says:

    Ah, Venice… And love that last shot of Craig absolutely spent after a long and happy day.

  6. Jenny says:

    Everything is GORGEOUS! The architecture is just AMAZING… I love the shot of the Berbere!!!

  7. So beautiful and I seriously want to get on a plane NOW. Every bit of exhaustion was worth it I am sure.

  8. Kala says:

    Wow. The pictures are Great!

  9. Oh my goodness. GORGEOUS! Breathtaking! I want to go NOW!! Lucky you. ๐Ÿ™‚

  10. CatherineD says:

    Oh, just gorgeous! I love all of the architecture, and you took amazing photos! I want to go now, too!

  11. Kelly says:

    Please tell me this isn’t the last Italy post?! I’ve really enjoyed them all. I’m so glad you got to go on a gondola ride. Oh and I soooo remember the complimentary limoncello shot at the end of the meal. I swear, I’d drink it just to be polite but holy crap I was usually already drunk on wine by the time they brought that by so it was usually a terrible idea.

  12. sue says:

    i’m loving reading these posts and seeing all the wonderful photos! it’s terrible that i can’t remember some of the sites we did and didn’t go into. maybe i need to get my scrapbook out again. . .

    i’m with kelly c, i hope this isn’t the last post!

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