Blogs from Veneto, Italy, Europe

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Europe » Italy » Veneto » Verona August 3rd 2019

With the operas finishing late I am now a day behind in the blogs - so hope to catch up today. After another great breakfast, we headed to retrace our steps to find the Duomo - we at least knew the direction of travel from our wet trip the day before. Having made it to the castle once more, the sign was spotted pointing us in the direction of the Duomo (think I missed it whilst looking down to avoid puddles) - with no such excuses this time we made it to the cathedral fairly unscathed apart from going the whole way around it to find the entrance. As you will see from the photos, the interior was absolutely stunning and the many stages of the build over the centuries just added to the splendour. It ... read more
Basilica di San Zeno
Basilica di San Zeno
Basilica di San Zeno

Europe » Italy » Veneto » Verona August 2nd 2019

The breakfast at the hotel is amazing - so much food and choice that keeps being replenished. It certainly sets you up for day. The four of us decided to head across Ponte Pietra to the Castel San Pietro, a high point which offers a view across the city of Verona. We headed from the hotel to pass the Arena di Verona enroute, however we were sidetracking by buying a couple of shirts, ties and a scarf on route from a wonderful shop with its origins in Milan. The shop staff were brilliant and prepared the shirt for me to try it on - never had such service in the UK. Once purchases had been made, we continued on our journey to our original destination, we decided to stop for a pitstop, which was lucky as ... read more
City walls
View from Castle
View in the arena from our seat

Europe » Italy » Veneto » Verona August 1st 2019

Our final breakfast in the Regina Palace hotel was another good feast - looking out to the lake. Next, all packed up and checked out, we headed to the station for our first train of the day - the 09:40 to Milano Centrale. Although a couple of minutes late, the train pulled into platform 1, the trouble was the coach numbers were not that clear so we got on the train and I went in hunt of coach 6. As I was moving down I saw the numbers increasing and thought it was ok for both of us to travel down - wrong! The numbers did indeed increase but from number 4 to 14 in one leap. We gave up and stood mid carriages and got into a wonderful conversation with a couple from New Zealand ... read more
Impressive building
Little feast for €6
Oldest bridge with 2 original arches

Europe » Italy » Veneto » Venice July 4th 2019

We decided that as long as we had to wait a few days for the part we ordered for our autopilot to arrive we would take advantage of the time and take a few days away from the boatyard in Brindisi. Our goal for quite some time has been to visit Venice and arrive by boat, but as exciting as that sounds we have been rethinking that. With getting a later start this season, having a couple of problems with the boat that needed fixing which had us stopping here in Brindisi and finally with looking at the winds that seem to be coming out of the north pretty constantly lately we figured going to Venice by train was not a bad alternative. It also would take the pressure off of trying to get that far ... read more
Traveled Through Some of the Agricultural Areas
One of the Hilltop Villages Seen From the Train
Balconies & Plantings Add To The Scenery In Venice

Europe » Italy » Veneto » Venice July 1st 2019

Now that the cruse ships have sailed away, it's time to explore Venice in a little more depth. After a quick breakfast in the hotel, where we were pleasantly surprised that the eggs were almost cooked, and the bacon was almost crisp, we were ready to head off on a walking tour of Venice. In all fairness to the hotels, evidently eggs and bacon are an American thing, and not really a mainland Europe breakfast. All of the hotels have had scrambled eggs, though they mostly are pretty runny. And the bacon is always undercooked. Anna promised that if we visited Britain, we would be able to get "proper" bacon. The other odd thing, is that with all the wonderful sausage we have seen, breakfast sausage is always hot dogs, regular old American style hot dogs, ... read more
Hidden Venice - At the Compo
Hidden Venice - The Cistern
Hidden Venice - Garbage Boat

Europe » Italy » Veneto » Venice June 30th 2019

This morning we said arrivederci to both the Dolomite Mountains of Cortina, and our faithful driver Pancrazio. Once we reach the outskirts of Venice, we will have no more need of the motorcoach since travel around Venice will be by boat. We really enjoyed the hotel in Cortina, even though it wasn't air conditioned, it was a kind of old world charming. Some of the other passengers complained about the noise, but it didn't bother us at all. We just opened all the windows when we first got back from dinner and cooled the room right down, then we closed them up tight as we went to bed to block the noise. We were both so tired we probably could have slept through anything. After a quick breakfast, we headed off to the bus at 9:00. ... read more
Glassblowing - Demonstation of the Vase
Glassblowing - Demonstation of the Dancing Horse
Burano -Colorful Houses

Europe » Italy » Veneto » Cortina d'Ampezzo June 29th 2019

After a noisy night in Cortina, most everyone was able still to get a good nights sleep. The 120 km race began last night at about 11:00pm and there was all kinds of activity in the center of town. There is music playing continuously and some guy announcing over a loudspeaker, but mostly it is just a party atmosphere and everyone is having a good time. We left the windows open in our room to cool it down until we were ready for bed and then closed everything up so it wasn't too noisy. Fortunately we like the music selection of mostly classic rock, so it just put us right to sleep. We are all getting near the end of this trip and are all a little tired. A couple of people are fighting colds, and ... read more
Cortina - Riding Up The Mountain
Passo Falzarego - The Cable Car Arrives
Passo Falzarego - View From The Cable Car

Europe » Italy » Veneto » Cortina d'Ampezzo June 28th 2019

Waking up this morning in Lake Maggiore was wonderful! We opened the curtains, stepped out on the balcony looking over Lake Maggiore and pinched ourselves to make sure we were really in Italy. We each then headed to our own bathroom, since this is a 2-bath room, and readied for the day. The accommodations on this trip have really been awesome! Breakfast was great, though there was a French tour group that got to the buffet before us. But we just forced our way through and made sure we got plenty to eat. Once we headed out to the bus, we understood the advantage of having portage. With Insight Travel, we have portage included. We are allowed 1 full suitcase and 1or 2 small hand carry items for luggage. When we arrive at the hotel, we ... read more
Verona - Opera Colosseum
Verona - Casa Giuletta Balcony
Verona - Our Restaurant for Lunch

Europe » Italy » Veneto » Venice May 27th 2019

The rain arrived but didn't dampen our enjoyment of Venice. Today we enjoyed indoor adventures. Rather close to our "flat" was the Basilica of Santa Maria Gloriosa dei Frari - a church built by the Franciscan and dedicated in 1492! It is still a church but contains many of Venice's most famous works of art. Went early and almost had it to ourselves. Besides the paintings and sculptures there were some amazing carved pieces and even a 16th century clockworks. Couldn't leave Italy without having pizza - it was complemented with grilled sardines and onions soaked in olive oil and deep fried zucchini blossoms. Ben will appreciate someone else who has eaten in this restaurant. Did some exploring in the rain looking for bookstores and bakeries. Also did some house keeping and laundry as we prepare ... read more
Frari
Carved clock face
Clock face detail

Europe » Italy » Veneto » Venice May 26th 2019

Spent the day visiting two other islands in the Venetian lagoon - Burano and Murano. Where many European cities have extensive bus/subway public transport services - Venice has boats. The network is extensive and considering how many people they need to service - very effective. First stop was Burano, known for its fine lace making and very colorful houses. Not too big and not too crowded and a great excuse to have a cappuccino and "Burano bussola (biscuit)". It takes about an hour to cross the lagoon to Burano - we said they were efficient, no fast! Next stop was Murano, know for its glassworks. Very quaint island but a bit more crowded as is only 10 min. from Venice proper. Gee found a very nice osteria with a great outdoor garden and very local feel. ... read more
Sunday morning treats
Burano colors
Burano color




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