A Most Magical City
Trip Start Jun 26, 2011
32Trip End Oct 09, 2011
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A damp but spectacular arrival into Venice made us realise how high the ship is, and it gave a wonderfully different perspective of this beautiful city from that seen before on two previous brief visits.
Tugs guided us through the narrow waterways, giving a great view of all the islands and the best buildings of Venice, a wonderful perspective on the entrance to the Grand Canal.
Although we have seen St Marks square before, the magnificence of the buildings there took our breath away- surely there can be no more ornate buildings than these anywhere in the world? Aparantly, wealthy trading ship owners tried to outdo each other in their gifts to the city and it's churches.
We had previously shied away from a gondola ride at E80 (NZ$160), but this time succumbed as it was included in a very good value tour of islands arranged at a special price by the ship- in effect it cost around E32 each.
What a wonderful experience it turned out to be- we realised that this is something a visitor simply must do to get the true flavour of the back streets of a city without roads. Everything is done by water, and trucks are replaced by barges, and as you can see in the photo, even the ambulance is a boat!
Beautifully varnished taxi boats are the normal way of getting about here- one shown was from the famous Hotel Cipriani. A wonderful art installation in one of the churches we visited was called ascension.. a revolving column of smoke like a tornado periodically sucked up into the dome by a huge fan up there.
We celebrated my 65th birthday that day with a nice lunch of scallops on the waterfront, as you can see.