The City of Romantic Enchantment
A city built on water, can hardly fail to enchant people with its numerous bridges and network of canals which is the primary means of transport in this beautiful city. Yes, tourists are everywhere to be seen, but hopping across one bridge and taking a few turns, can put you in the secluded spot of the city you may have hoped for. Venice truly is a magical place, and perhaps one of the most photogenic cities I have ever visited.
When I travel, I love to find the places where the locals eat and drink. I like to put my bags down as soon as I arrive, freshen up and go for a walk and immerse myself in the culture. To ensure you get the best out of your trip in this great city, I have listed some of my recommendations:
Osteria – Cantine Del Vino Gia Schiavi
Cantine Del Vino Gia Schiavi, is the place to grab some great snacks for a quick bite or light lunch in true Ventian style. This quaint little place has the feel of a family run business with such a nice variety of snacks. The nice thing about the Osterias in Venice are that you can take your food and drink outside and admire the views of the canals. The pictures below show some of the options we went for.
This is an obvious must-do in Venice. A Gondola ride comes at fixed rate and should cost you €80 for 30 minutes, which is pretty expensive but a one-off experience. So make sure you are not being conned and paying any more than this for the 30 minutes.
Although Caffe Florian is situated in the heart of the the most crowded tourist spot in Venice, Piazza San Marco, there is good reason to visit for a coffee. Established in 1720, Caffe Florian is the oldest coffee house in continuous operation and every bit of it feels as Italian as it gets! Huge thank you to our host in Caffe Florian who whipped up some tasty coffee options for us and gave us a history of this timeless coffee house.
Venice Free Walking Tour
One thing that you must know about Venice is that you will walk a lot. Water taxis are often extortionately priced and there are no bikes to ride around because of the narrow streets. Bearing that in mind, make sure you take a comfy pair of shoes with you as you’ll need them. Seeing as you will be doing a lot of walking I cannot recommend Venice Free Walking Tour enough. My brother found this before we departed from London, so we decided to book in advance. Although we were pretty tired even before the tour begun, I’m glad we went along. It was 2 hours well spent and a real education of the history of Venice. I have included the link above for you to book before you go.
Given Venice’s geographical position there are no surprises that you find some of the freshest seafood here. If you are a seafood fan like me, you will be in heaven, so feel free to overdose on it in Venice as the Venetians pride themselves on the taste and freshness of the seafood they serve up!
Now no trip to Venice will be complete if you don’t try a Spritz (unless you don’t drink alcohol). The Spritz Veneziano is a wine-based cocktail. The drink is prepared with Prosecco wine, a dash of some bitter liquor such as Aperol or Campari and topped off with some sparkling mineral water. The Campari based Spritz was way too bitter for my liking, so I opted mostly for the Aperol based one which is a refreshing drink in the peak of a hot summer’s day in Venice. Granted, the Spritz isn’t for everyone but if you still fancy something a bit more lighter and want to continue behaving like an Italian go for a Hugo Cocktail instead. This drink is prepared with Prosecco, Elderflower and Mint and definitely worth a try. Needless to say, red or white wine should also be on the agenda when in Italy.
I hope you enjoyed reading about my experience in Venice and hopefully my recommendations help you have a nice trip in this beautiful little city. The style in Venice is a bit more relaxed when compared to Florence or Milan, however you will still spot the suave and elegant Italian style nevertheless. Check out the exclusive pictures below which include the outfits I chose to wear in Venice.
If you have been to Venice or want some more recommendations, feel free to comment below.