Day 210: To Venice, via MilanSeptember 12, 2017 in Italy
Off to Venice we go! Excited to finally be heading here, as it's just one of those places everyone needs to visit. But first, the travel. We packed up and left quite early, around 8am, as we needed to return the car in Milan by 10:30am and it was a 2 hour drive.
The reason we'd done a return rental was because (from memory) the hire to do a return journey was about 80 euros, while the one way journey was 250-ish. A bit of a difference! Even once you factor in 40 euros for train tickets Milan->Venice, an extra tank of petrol, 12 euros in tolls. But the other consideration was that our Airbnb wouldn't be ready until mid-afternoon, so driving from Vicenza to Venice and arriving with all our luggage at 11am wouldn't be great.
So we drove back to Milan. Drove through a couple of super heavy rainstorms where I had to go quite slowly, though the local idiots were just plowing along at 150km/h like usual. The drive was about 2 hours 20 minutes, back along essentially the same route we'd taken over the past few days. Not much of note. A bit stressful getting through Milan with the traffic and the drivers, but we made it in one piece and with no incidents.
Once again the car hire company was super slow, and it was nearly 45 minutes before I finished dropping off the car (literally all they needed to do was check it over and trade a couple of signatures, but whatever). Shandos used the time to buy food and tickets, then we hopped on the 11:25 train with about 15 minutes to spare.
Train ran to schedule which was nice and a little unexpected for Italy! Very crowded though, and we ended up sitting in separate seats (normally we'd occupy an inward-facing four-seater). Had to change trains at Verona, where quite a few people got off so we had much more space for the final leg into Venice.
Arrived into the bustling main station at Venice, got our bearings and started on the short walk to our apartment. We're staying in Cannaregio which is slightly less touristed than other parts of Venice. Apparently. We'll see. About a 10 minute walk to our building, a palazzo fronting onto the grand canal just near the casino. Though of course we're staying essentially in the attic, at the rear with only views of rooftops. Comfortable room, though a lot of it has a sloping ceiling which limits its utility.
Rested up then headed out for a walk around! Very busy and lots of people around but that seems quite normal. The street just near us is a pretty main street, so we just followed it around slowly as it ran parallel to the grand canal. Eventually we arrived at the Rialto Bridge and took a few photos.
Decided to find somewhere for dinner and eventually decided on a place down a backstreet that we'd noticed, a small wine bar selling chiccetti, essentially Venetian tapas or pintxos like we'd had in San Sebastian. After a few of those and a couple of drinks we wandered back home via a pizza stand where we filled up the corners of our stomachs.
Off to bed early, busy day tomorrow!Read more