Chapter 4 - DAY24 - Rome to Venice

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September 30th 2011
Published: October 2nd 2011
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St Marks VeniceSt Marks VeniceSt Marks Venice

The focal point of St Marks Square

The next stop on our journey through Italy was Venice and it was pretty much a straight haul with only a roadside lunch break. The Auto Grill we stopped at was interesting in that the dining area was actually above the motorway. It is possible to enter from both sides of the road. Very clever idea I thought. We were warned to watch out for Gypsy’s but fortunately we didn’t encounter any.

I lost my mobile phone or had it stolen in Rome – pretty sure I just lost it. Fortunately it was a $20 prepaid one I got specifically for the trip (and to cover the fact I would likely lose it)! Fortunately Go-Sim, the company we got the SIM card for our travel through, were excellent. They transferred the balance on my phone to Jeanette’s and cancelled. So from now on we will rely on Jeanette’s phone to keep in contact with home. Although hopefully the regular Blog updates are helping family and friends at home to follow our adventure.

The drive from Rome up through Tuscany to Venice took us past some very nice scenery. When arrived at
Great ViewGreat ViewGreat View

Looking from the roof top of our hotel back to the main Island
our destination we transferred to Taxi Boats for the last leg of our journey. It’s all pretty amazing, streets replaced by canals and cars by boats, water lapping at the doors of the buildings. A physical environment that is totally different to anything we have ever experienced.

Sadly for Venice the long term future is very bleak, as a result of the tectonic plate on the West of Italy moving up and the one on the East moving down under it eventually Venice will submerge into the Adriatic sea (Venice is on the East Coast). There is a lot of work at huge expense being done to put up barriers to hold the sea at bay but in the end, barring something unforeseen like a massive earthquake, the process is irreversible. 35 years ago the population of Venice was 150,000 now it is 52,000 so the writing is on the wall. However it doesn’t stop the tourists from coming, the locals hate them but they also need then as tourism is Venice’s only real industry.

Our Hotel the Molino Stucky Hilton is top quality and located on Giudecca Island which directly across the channel from St Marks Square

Water replaces roads-its all very unusual
– just a 10 minute Ferry ride if that. The first thing that struck us was the number of cruise ships in port – we counted 9 full size ships, bad sign as their passengers will all be heading for St Marks Square and all the same attractions as us-more crowds! After we had settled into our room we went up to the top (8th) floor of the Hotel. There is a swimming pool, bar and spectacular views over to the main Island – breathtaking.

For dinner crossed to the main Island and ate in a lovely waterfront restaurant - to be fair it’s hard not to have dinner on the waterfront in Venice! However we were in an excellent restaurant facing the main canal. Then we walked the short distance to St Marks Square WOW here we are looking up at St Marks Basilica Venice – another pinch me moment. We stopped for a drink at the Lavena Cafe on the Square close to St Marks; it first started trading in 1750 and was a favourite haunt of Casanova! Brendan decided because Venice is the city of romance he would give all the men a
Top shelfTop shelfTop shelf

The pool on the roof of our Hotel - pretty impressive.
single red rose to give to their wives/partners after dinner to help capture the moment -top bloke.

After dinner we had a cruise down the length of the Grand Canal, past plenty of palatial Palaces, the Rialto Bridge and many more highlights. We were on 3 boats with Brendan shouting a commentary from 1; we lost contact at times but still got a good overview of the area. We also past a Gondola which someone had fallen out of, there was a bit of a panic to find him and get him back on board without tipping the Gondola over. They don’t look all that stable in the water and we were all booked on a Gondola Canal Ride the next day!

All in all a fruitful day, we travelled to our new base, have excellent accommodation and had an orientation tour and Dinner in ‘downtown Venice’.

Additional photos below
Photos: 5, Displayed: 5


Casanova's  favourite hauntCasanova's  favourite haunt
Casanova's favourite haunt

We enjoyed a drink at he Laverna Cafe on St Marks Square. Opened in 1750 it was a favourite Cafe of Casanova

3rd October 2011

Rooftop pool!
Are you guys going to go for a dip? What a view :)
3rd October 2011

Hi Melissa
Didn\'t quite get into the pool. Mum was all ready to go but we ran out of time-so much to see and do.

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