Monday, December 5, 2011

Venice Takeaway Thoughts & Tips

I am trying to compile a table of expenses on a per-city basis which I will be posting hopefully soon. This is similar to the other table budgets of my other trips. However, the improved blogger still does not have that "table" option. It takes up so much time editing a table and it frustrates me that the end product does not look like my nice excel spreadsheet. I'm working on this and will post these one I get around the nitty-gritty task of table formatting for blogger. 
  • You have to stay in Venice overnight. Some daytrippers arrive in the morning, have lunch, take pictures and leave in the afternoon. Allow Venice to charm you by exploring its beauty at night.

Think how you will cross bridges with your wheeled luggage.

  • You have to stay in the island. I know it can be daunting choosing an accommodation that will fit your budget, but you really have to stay in the mainland. Preferably somewhere near the train station if you will be staying for just a few nights.
  • Know the direction how to get to your hotel/hostel. The address is almost useless. Know which right/left to take after the 3rd or 4th bridge on your left. 
  • If you are arriving at night or leaving early in the day, check how you'll get out of Venice via public transportation. You might need to hire an expensive water taxi.

  • You do not need a 1:2000000000 scaled map. You just have to know where you will be staying. You can get lost after that. I spent my day getting lost while eating gelatos, pizzas and drinking coffee. 
A yummy pizza for 1.95 euros

  • Buy the ACTV transportation pass. One ride costs an expensive €6.50. If you get off at the wrong stop – you have to pay again. I bought mine for €18 which I wisely used for 36 hours.  You have to swipe in a terminal when you board a water bus (vaporetto).

Rates of transportation pass in Venice

Swipe terminal - I forget the real term
  • Get lost. Please get utterly lost. If everyone is heading right – head left. You will eventually find yourself in some main tourist spot. The unique and interesting streets are those not in the map, or those that tourists ignore. You may encounter a dead end from time to time – just turn back and go the other way.
  • When shopping for souvenirs, ask yourself if you will really use that. How many time will you use that mask or that jack-in-a-box hat? Getting around Venice is already a challenge, so think how much luggage would you like to tow around when you get out of Venice.
  • Painful but this has to be said: Food sucks big time. This is one of the major disappointments I had. Venice was my first city in Italy and I was hoping to savor some really nice Italian meal. Wrong. See those restaurants with tourists? Avoid them at all costs. I had to get lost, tired and hungry in an alley somewhere and eat in a non-touristy part of the island to enjoy the good food. 
  • I did my homework of researching where to eat in Venice - the best options. However, since I decided to get lost most of the time, I didn't have time finding that best restaurant when I am off wandering at another side of the island. Be flexible with your schedule. You may research and you'd like to try this and that but when you're there already, try to yield to whatever you fancy. It will be allright.
  • I wasted € 3 for a huge chocolate- pistachio cookie which is so hard - read: stale. Yucky. I wasn't able to complain since I took the cookie back at the hostel before I opened it.
"Turo-turo, Venice's version"

  • Despite the bad food, they have really good gelato. Eat two scoops after every meal.

  • Learn some basic Italian words and use them:
Buongiorno - Hello, morning
Buona sera - hello, afternnoon
Buena notte - at night
Grazie - Thank you. Use this all the time.
I noticed that "Ciao" is not widely used.

  • Stop complaining if there is no English translation of a sign. You can always ask anyway. It irks me that tourists complain about not having enough English-translated signs. Non-translated menus are always a good sign.

“When you travel, remember that a foreign country is not designed to make you comfortable. It is designed to make its own people comfortable.” – Clifton Fadiman

Venezia Santa Lucia train station on the right.


  1. i really look forward to reading your next posts. I am planning my own The Dream trip for 2013 and I can really relate to everything you've said so far and i could feel the same awe and wonder and gratefulness you've felt the moment you landed in Europe. I can't wait to experience the same thing. Thank you for sharing your trip with us and keep the posts coming. Yes, i am an impatient excited one. :-)

  2. ^Never too early to plan Kris! I hope you find things useful here for your trip. Glad to help you out. :)


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...