Venice, Italy

Trip Start Jul 18, 2008
Trip End Sep 03, 2008

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Where I stayed

Flag of Italy  , Veneto,
Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Where do we start? Our train ride was comfortable, eventless, and relaxing. Arrival time into Venice was 6:30pm and the weather was hot. Off of the steps of the train station was the Grand Canal with boats coming and going. No cars, no buses, just boats. Surreal! We took a waterbus down the Grand Canal to our hotel. Our room was small and hot, but once we figured out how to use the air conditioning, the room temperature dropped down to only 30 degrees celcius. Hungry and tired, we took a walk through the area, and found endless sidewalk cafe's down side streets and in Piazza's (squares). The only modes of transportation in Venice is by foot or by boat. We found a nice cafe where we enjoyed pizza and beverages. The next morning brought us more hot weather, but we were up to the task! We trekked out after a delicious continental breakfast and found quaint shops down every sidestreet and in every Piazza we went to. Cass found a Panama Hat which made him look so Rico Suave! The variety of shops in Venice is incredible. From glass, to beads (Joanne loved it, but they were expensive), to clothing, to fabric, etc. Gucci, Dolce and Gabanna, Chanel, and Prada were everywhere, so, we had to get something with one of the names on it! You'll see it in the pictures we post. Around lunch time, we made it to St. Mark's Square. It is as beautiful as the pictures make it out to be. Columns, open square, incredible cathedral, and pigeons abound! Signs posted everywhere warning of fines and imprisonment if you dare to sit on the square and eat or drink. We didn't try to see if it's true. After this we went off on foot again, but our feet and our temperatures were struggling, so, when in Venice, do as the venitians do....take a gondola ride around Venice!!! It is as romantic and inspiring as you could imagine. Well, as much romance as you can get with your kids around! The gondola driver gave us a brief but educational history of Venice, and pointed out certain buildings along the way, including where Marco Polo lived, and where Casanova lived. Other buildings where people could no longer live on the first two floors due to the constantly rising water during high tide. We did more walking after the Gondola and needed to take a siesta in the afternoon. The evening brought us another wonderful meal, but the service was pretty poor. It didn't taint our vision of Venice. Truly a calm and peaceful city which felt very safe.
The kids have shown a new appreication for Canadian no-smoking laws, as it seems every one in Italy smokes! Finally, in true Kolt trip style, we were sent off by the local Ventian tour guide at our train platform - a senile old man thinking the train track was a toilet and the weeds were toilet paper! Ahhh.....Venice. Ewwww. We are now off to Munich and then overnight to Berlin, where we catch our connecting train to Poland. Until then, with much love, the Koltzoo Crew.
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