Excitement built upon our arrival at the Venice Marco Polo airport. We had boarded our flight leaving Montreal’s Pierre Elliot Trudeau airport, with its stop over in Paris, late in the evening our local time. After nine hours of travel, we landed early morning in Venice, at 9 am, exhausted but exhilarated, to find ourselves at the first stop of our dream vacation.
We would be spending two nights in the city and there was much to see and experience before departing to our next stop in Italy. From the airport, our transport bus to the Piazzale Roma, which is a large square on the outskirts of Venice, offering the only place to park, dropped us off to find the rest of the way ourselves. From there, cars or any motorized vehicle is prohibited, or should I say they are impossible to maneuver through the tight streets or the many bridges. This is a walking city.
To get to our guest house, the Palazzo Rosa, which is located near the Rialto Bridge, we took the Vaporetto. Riding on the waterborne route is a great way to see the city as you glide over the Grand Canal. At the seventh stop, named the Fondamenta Nuove, we stepped off and continued on foot. In less than 10 minutes, following the signs to Santi Apostoli, rolling our suitcases along, and crossing over a bridge, we found the Palazzo Rosa just at the end of the street.
The guest house is a remodeled, old historic Venetian home, which offers guests all the modern conveniences, as well as breakfast daily between 8 and 10:30 am. Check-in is at 2 pm, which meant we arrived early. Lucky for us, having arrived at eleven o’clock, the pleasant desk clerk who greeted us, readily produced a key to our room. Beautifully decorated in the classic Venetian style, spacious, and equipped with an in-room private bathroom, our room was bright and elegant. Eager to get started, we deposited our baggage into the room, leaving the guest house to begin our visit.
I will get into what we saw and our reactions next week. For now, I want to share something hysterical that happened to us. We walked around the city for hours. Already tired from our long sleepless overnight flight, we quickly ran out of energy. Deciding to retire early, to continue our sightseeing early the next morning, we retired back to our room to rest and catch up on our sleep.
It was six in the evening when we lay down on our comfortable bed. Sleep found us easily. We woke, glanced at our watches, and saw they read eight o’clock. We would be just in time for breakfast. Freshly showered, we dressed, exited our room to go to the charming breakfast room facing the picturesque Rio dei Santi Apostoli.
No breakfast. Maybe they were late in setting up. We approached the desk clerk to inquire at what time breakfast would be ready. He informed us it was at eight in the morning. We looked at each other, perplexed as we knew it was past eight already. Understanding dawned on the clerks face. He smiled, with a knowing look on his face. Telling us that it was eight in the evening, the same day we arrived, we had a good laugh with him. We had only slept for two hours.
What did we do? We went out for dinner. Having caught our second wind, we enjoyed a great plate of pasta, a bottle of wine, an after dinner vin santo to dip our biscotti in, and made our way to Piazza San Marco for an evening stroll.
Next week: Piazza San Marco – Mercato Rialto – Grand canal
Ponte Vecchio – Ponte Rialto – Palazzo Ducale – Clock Tower.