I visited Venice last summer and loved it so much that when I had an opportunity to go back this year, I jumped at it! Venice is such a unique place, unlike any other city. The canals, bridges, beautiful buildings with worn out facades and lively colors are a sight for sore eyes! I can get lost day after day wandering the streets and alleys of this amazing city.
I arrived in Venice early evening, checked into the hotel, showered, changed and went out to dinner. My husband and I had dinner at the Rialto Restaurant, with it's views of the Rialto Bridge and Grand Canal. We have eaten there before and it has become a favorite. Their pizza, caprese salad and drinks are always welcomed! We lingered over dinner while enjoying the views and people watching. After dinner we took a stroll before going back to the hotel for the night. As we were walking along the cobblestone streets, I started to pass out. My weight fell on my right ankle and I sprained it. Thankfully, my husband was holding my hand and kept me from falling to the ground. My only explanation for this occurrence is exhaustion from a sleepless night of travel. I was able to make it back to the hotel, although I was in pain.
The next morning, after sleeping like a log, I woke up and tried to walk to the bathroom. My ankle was in so much pain I could not walk at all. I held on to the walls and furniture to make my way around the room. As I was hopping along, my head started to spin and I felt really ill, after which I fainted again. This time I fell to the floor and apparently landed on my face. My husband ran to pick me up and helped me back to bed. I recovered after a while but was left with some swelling on the right side of my face and a swollen lip. This is one of the main reasons I am so small in most of my picture. I didn't want my face showing with the swelling and later the scabs that began to form.
Although my ankle hurt and my face was swollen and scarred, I was not about to spend my Venice vacation in bed in the hotel room. I swallowed my pride and went out. I struggled walking, especially the first day, but I did succeed to, slowly but surely, trudge along. My ankle began to feel a little better after buying a bandage and wrapping it up. Despite these two incidents at the beginning of my trip, I did manage to make the best out of each day and really enjoy the vacation. There is so much to see in Venice and so much beauty all around, it was easy to forget my problems and get lost in the allure and charm all around me.
As much as I love to see the main tourist attractions in Venice such as Piazza San Marco where St. Mark's Basilica and the Clock Tower are located or Ponte Dei Sospiri (the Bridge of Sighs) and Ponte di Rialto (Rialto Bridge), my favorite thing to do in Venice is explore the small streets and alleys that are off the beaten path. I don't particularly enjoy large crowds so I like to spend as little time as possible in these crowded areas where all the tourists congregate. Once you leave the crowded spots and wander onto the alleys or streets, it becomes fairly quiet and peaceful. Those "hidden" corners and alleys are my favorite places to explore, take pictures and just enjoy the beauty Venice has to offer.
The cafes and restaurants are also wonderful in Venice. We like to try different venues most times, but we have been known to return to a favorite place a second (or third) time. When the owners or waiters recognize us, they are always very happy we've returned because it means we really enjoy their food. One time they gave us each a shot of limoncello, on the house as a "thank you"! Yum! There really isn't a bad restaurant in Venice. As long as you stick with the authentic Venetian restaurants, you really can't go wrong. I have never had a bad meal in Venice. In fact, I have so many favorite dishes from there that I plan on recreating them at home for my family. I'm getting hungry just thinking about all the delicious food I ate there!
I don't think I can tire of Venice. Each time I go back, I see things and experience things that I missed before. I'm sure the same will be true next time I visit. I am looking forward to it because Venice has a special place in my heart now and I love it more with each visit. Until next time!
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