We took a scenic train ride from Rome to Venice to get ready to celebrate my cousin’s 21st birthday – she was studying part of her university year there (jealous, I know!).
Our hotel had a great central location, just a 5-minute walk from Venice’s Santa Lucia Train Station and on the street next to the Canal Grande. For those ice cream lovers, it’s a few minutes walk from the Magnum Pleasure Store, where you choose your own ice cream, chocolate coating and toppings. Dribble. Amazing.
Thankfully my cousin had been in Venice for a few months and had scoped out good places to eat and drink. On the night of her birthday, after dinner, we moved on to Bacaro Jazz Bar for a night of cocktails. There was jazz music playing and the ceiling was covered in bras – sadly, there wasn’t much point in donating one of mine as I live in sports bras, haha…
The rounds of drinks were flowing; and I got hooked on the piña coladas. My mum decided to purchase a ‘selfie stick’ whilst in Rome and now I have an abundance of unflattering group pictures that got blurrier as the night went on…
The streets are lit by street lamps as the night and the reflections shined in the canal. This is all lovely and scenic until you realise that everyone was slightly tipsy and not all of the canals have barriers. Everyone remained safe, apart from my aunty’s shoe that is now probably at the bottom of the canal.
Walking through the labyrinth of Venetian streets and seeing the antique-looking houses and shops that bordered the canals whilst wandering over quaint bridges was magical.
However, this all changed when it rained…
We are all feeling a little fragile the morning after the cocktails and I was woken up by, what I thought, was my aunty’s noisy alarm clock to then be told that it was the flood sirens. I’d never seen preparations like it in my life, I mean military standard.
By the time we had eaten breakfast and ventured out, the streets were lined with duck-boards, and shops and homes had flood barriers raised. I had visions of next season’s clothing line, as the majority of Venice (including myself) strutted around in brightly coloured ponchos and waterproof waders.
As this was our sight-seeing day, we powered on to see the likes of Piazza San Marco, the Basilica di San Marco, the Rialto Bridge and the Bridge of Sighs. I didn’t feel that a sight-seeing agenda was absolutely necessary as wondering the tiny streets (and getting lost if you’re us) is a sight in itself! We meandered into shops and then retired with a hot chocolate, which was basically melted chocolate – not good for the blood sugar levels but definitely good for a hangover and soggy clothes.
Venice is full of beautiful architecture, full of lavish designer shops and definitely full of photo opportunities! I loved Venice and will definitely be returning to experience it in the sun!
“You may have the universe if I may have Italy.” – Giuseppe Verdi
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Trip Advisor – 4.5
Booking.com – 8