Canals,bridges, gondolos and glass.

Trip Start Mar 12, 2010
Trip End Sep 17, 2010

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Flag of Italy  , Veneto,
Tuesday, May 18, 2010

We stayed about an hour out of Venice in Padova at the **** Accademia Palace, as the accommodation is cheaper. It is only a five minute walk to catch the train for the 45 minute trip to Venice. We had been warned that there is no where to park and parking is expensive when you do park. Train was great.

The night we landed in Padova there was trade fair which is a little like our shows in Australia. The food was great and we got to see a lot of Italian products that we would never have seen otherwise. Daniel learnt a new hip hop move as they had a teen alley with teachers on the dance floor.

Venice is beautiful with its waterways and old buildings.  There are so many shops – the whole place is shops and restaurants and cafes.  People walking their dogs – those that still live in Venice.  Did see some people with prams – what a nightmare as there are steps over bridges everywhere.

I bought some glass jewellery – Murano glass and anything glass is the home of Venice.  They also have beautifully decorated masks.  I would have loved to buy at least one but there is no way I could have got it home without it been damaged  I'm sure.

We meandered our way along the tourist path and then some not so shiny paths attempting as lonely planet  admonishes to 'loose ourseleves in the winding alleyways and  photos later we came to a huge square where St Marks Cathedral is located.  It is beautiful.  You aren’t allowed photos or backpacks in the church.  The church is the best preserved church I’ve seen. The mosaic tiles in the murals on the ceilings are intact and the place is magnificent.  Poor Daniel had to wait outside with backpack till Paul went through and then back out to hold the backpack and then Daniel could enter with his Canon hanging around his neck.  I did hear the shutter a few times and I think he probably got one photo that was any good.  Around the square are cafes with live music and there are plenty of pigeons – nice place to sit and chill for awhile.

Gondola rides were like 20 Euros a person!  No family discounts at all!  We saw a group of older Italians getting out of a Gondola and I could see that something was going to happen – told Daniel to watch with his camera and sure enough the rather largish Italian mama made a failed leap on to the platform before falling like a beached whale with a shriek. A second Gondala captain had to come to the skinny blokes aid as they had to physically haul her back into an upright standing position!!!  She didn’t hurt herself and appeared not even to have been embarrassed by her lack of finesse, though I am sure she would have hurt not only her pride and been mortified had she known Daniel had captured her misfortune on film!

At the end of the day our feet were very tired and we were glad to jump on the train back to the Hotel, but alas, a group of annoying, loud and naughty 9/10 year old school kids just had to sit with us – in fact we were located in the middle of their group. The single male teacher tried but was unable to shut them up. I think it was all the soft drink and junk food they were eating!  Daniel wanted to kill them and so did I by the time we got off at our stop for our Hotel. Paul however enjoyed a hour nap all the way home, awaking refreshed on arrival at Padova.

From Venice we headed to Ancona (18th May) the next day where we stayed a night at the hotel Fortuna and returned our hire car to the rental office which happened to be strait across the street from the hotel. The picturesque harbour is right across from the hotel and it was simple to catch a short bus ride to catch the Blueline Ferry to Split (20th May).  It leaves at 2030 at night. We had dinner on the boat in the restaurant as we pulled out the harbour and then retired to our cabin. We watched a movie on the computer and went to sleep with the rocking of water.  Got woken up with someone knocking on our door and telling us to get up!  Took another 2 hours to dock – think they thought everyone would have breakfast in their restaurant – we waited till Split.
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