Gondolier Kelly

Trip Start Aug 29, 2010
Trip End Oct 04, 2010

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Flag of Italy  , Veneto,
Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Yes, we did it, we rode a gondola! Mission complete. After trying and failing to find an internet cafe (Venetians obviously don't believe in the internet...), we searched for an empty gondola. Luckily we found one in about five minutes as it had just parked and was letting another couple out. We agreed on the €80 price tag and climbed in for our 40 minute ride. Sadly, we never learned our gondolier's name but he was pretty good, informative and fun. Plus, he totally hit on Kelly! We spent a majority of our time in the small canals where it was pretty empty and very peaceful. He pointed out a few sites and told us about how boats get gasoline.
We just had a great time relaxing and taking pictures as well. We had an even greater time when our gondolier invited Kelly to row! She excitedly climbed to the back of the gondola and mostly held the giant oar while our driver worked it. She looked really cool and had a hilarious time being in charge. Barry and I thought that this was only an excuse to touch Kelly's shoulder and get close to her, hehehe. Anyways, we took a ton of amusing pictures during her five minutes of fun and even tipped him extra for the experience. This totally was the highlight of Kelly's trip! She may even move to Venice to become a gondolier!
Now it was dinnertime. We were wandering the streets of the Santa Croce area in search of food until we reached a tiny cafe that specialized in pizza and something called specialty toast. This specialty toast was basically a half an Italian loaf loaded high with yummy ingredients. As you can imagine, it was very large and pretty tasty. I just got a super large slice of mushroom pizza, it was like two and a half slices in one. Mmm, I just loved the mushrooms.
After the meal, we went in search of a bar called Harry's, which is famous for inventing the Bellini. Sadly to say, that place is over hyped and way over priced. When we walked in, Barry was told that he was not dressed appropriately in shirts so we had to sit in the upstairs "lounge". We noticed that this place looked fancy with snooty waiters and white glove service, etc. But the decor wasn't even great, it included a framed tablecloth that Cipriani once doodled on. Seriously. Then, we found out that the drinks were priced as if we were the prime minister of Italy or some rich celebrity, our Bellinis were €17.50 each! They were served in tall glasses, nothing fancy, and tasted alright, nothing special. Lame. However, we did get a plate of chicken mushroom croquettes and a bowl of green olives to go with our mediocre drink. Overall, we do not suggest visiting Harry's Bar if you ever go to Venice, just not worth it. Find a nice restaurant on the canal instead or something.
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Aileen on

OMG ITALY!!!! Love it!!!!! And glad you rode a gondola - I feel like it's a must do when you go to Venice. You're right, it's a bit pricey, but I think it's totally worth it. Did the accordion player sing some familiar tunes to you guys too?

Alan on

I still remember how we cheated on gondola rides. We crossed the canal for a quarter of Euro. It was 2 minutes long, but price efficient.

I really enjoyed going on the vaporetti and taking pictures.

Have fun.

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