Morning!  Welcome to Venezia.  Italy was one of the most spectacular places we have ever visited.  We landed in Rome rented a car and drove all the way up to Venice! I think ending in Venice might have left me a little biased, but here goes nothing. Venice, to me, was just okay.  Ugh, I hope that doesn’t offend anyone but it just wasn’t everything I had excepted so I want to be completely honest. How come? Keep reading!

When we travel, we are always looking for that feeling of adventure. We want to feel the energy of the culture,  learn something new about their way of life and try authentic local food.  The moment we got to Venice it felt very commercialized. Growing up, I had always imagined “Italy” aka Venice being a certain way.  I had envisioned canals with guys standing on the back of gondolas singing italian songs at the top of their lungs, while couples smooched sipping champagne under the setting sun.  

So it was kind of like that, minus the romance, add a lot of hustle and there were absolutely no singing men on the back of gondolas–okay that’s a lie I did see one.  I talked about the gondola ride forever and day before we got there so we both knew we at least had to try it. A number of tourists told us not to waste our money, 100 Euros for 30 minutes (which ended up being 20) to be exact.  Being the creatures that we are, we had to experience it  for ourselves. We created a little fruit place, got some bubbly and committed to the journey.  To be honest, it felt like I just got off of a ride at the Calgary Stampede, without the exhilaration part. We didn’t love that it was rushed, packed and not romantic at all.    

I was so afraid to disappoint Tim because he wanted to end the Italian portion of our trip in a romantic place and was looking forward to Venice the whole time we were in Italy. Thankfully, he completely agreed with me.  We are not hard to please, in fact we make the best of every situation so we decided to find what we did love about Venice and do more of that. This included eating, exploring the gorgeous streets and hanging our legs over the edge of the canals while munching on some vegan gelato.  There were dogs running around everywhere, local Italians engaged in deep (phone-less) conversations with one another and children laughing and playing in the courtyards.  This part was so beautiful.

The streets were absolutely gorgeous. They were full of so much character and colour and we would walk for hours just chatting and people watching.  The food was wonderful and the servers were always entertaining.  

If you get the chance I would suggest staying on the water and it would be fun to even use Airbnb instead of a hotel.  We stayed in a hotel for 3 nights which felt long so I think 1.5 days would be perfect. Eat anywhere because it will all be amazing and save room for the delicious deserts you can pick up on almost every corner.  You also need to carry around a map because the streets are so confusing! We had Mykonos streets memorized our second time around yet we had no hope figuring this one out.  Thankfully we had so much fun getting lost because we would always stumble into new and exciting things.  Eventually we would find our way, thanks to Tim because if it were up to me, we wouldn’t have gotten far.

One really exciting part of this trip was George Clooney’s wedding was the exact weekend we were there.  We think maybe this is why it felt a little overwhelming.  Paparazzi everywhereeeeeeeeeee.  People take photos of me everywhere we travel (seriously, everywhere) but in Venice it was a little more heightened.  Tim says it’s cause I dress like a gypsy but I think they thought I was either A. George Clooney’s soon to be wife or B. I was a guest from America attending the Clooney wedding. (Laughing) I’m certainly joking but if you look closely there is a photo of a guy taking a photo of me.  It’s kind of funny to think about because this would never happen in North America, at least not so obviously.  

Unfortunately, we didn’t get a glimpse of any celebrities (not even the Clooney’s) but we did eat lunch right across the river from where they were signing their marriage certificate! Paparazzi and news crews told us we literally had just missed them.  Sad, he was always my only celebrity crush! Kind of fun hey?

My favourite parts of Italy are to come, so stay tuned.  Definitely one of my favourite countries I’ve visited!

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