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Showing posts with label Vacation. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Vacation. Show all posts

Last time I was in Italy we spent about 6 hours in Venice. Christian and I stayed for 3 nights so we had a lot more time to explore. Sadly our 2nd full day (our wedding anniversary) we experienced some rain storms but made the best of it by retreating to our airbnb and spending the afternoon watching movies and then headed out to dinner.  We were going to explore a little bit on our final day since our flight wasn't until 5:30 but the rain was back so we opted to head to the airport early instead of getting soaked. Even with the rain we managed to see everything we wanted to, except one hiccup which I'll explain below.

This was one of our 2 airbnb splurges of the trip and boy was it worth it. If I were to live in Venice this is where I'd want to be.  It was the perfect size with a lofted bedroom and an amazing windowed porch with views of the canal and square. Check out my "honeymoon 2" highlight on Instagram for a video tour, its right at the beginning.  If enough people ask, maybe I'll share the listing with you. *wink wink*

What to Do

St. Mark’s Square

St. Mark's Square was the most touristy place we went. It includes the Basilica di San Marco, Doge's Palace, Torre dell’Orologio clock tower and the Campanile tower. The Basilica is free to enter but most of the other things to visit in this area have some kind of fee. A lot of people go up the Campanile tower but I recommend the bell tower on San Giorgio Maggiore Island (below.)

San Giorgio Maggiore Island

This island is a quick boat ride from St Mark's Square and is well worth it for the lack of tourists. I was hoping to bring Christian up the bell tower for an AMAZING panoramic view of Venice but we ran into a problem. Unfortunately the elevator was broken and that's the only way to get up the tower so we couldn't do it. We made the best of the situation and took outfit photos and enjoyed the view of Venice before heading back to the main island.  They also always have some sort of exhibit going on in and around the church so be sure to explore.

Rialto Bridge/T Fondaco dei Tedeschi Shopping Center

The Rialto Bridge is a must-visit even if you just walk across like we did. It's the oldest of the four bridges and is home to a bunch of shops. While you're there, check out T Fondaco dei Tedeschi, a 4 floor shopping center with rooftop terrace. Our hostess told us to visit the terrace for sunset for an amazing view of the city but by the time we arrived it was full (apparently you need to make reservations to go up - pro tip!)

Campo San Barnaba Church aka The Library from Indiana Jones and The Last Crusade

Our airbnb was just outside the Campo San Barnaba in Venice so we had a direct view of the square and this church. I didn't realize until our first evening that it's the church from one of my favorite movies - Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade. Needless to say I had a bit of a freak out. This is probably not exciting for non-Indy fans but right now there's a da Vinci exhibit within the church if you're into art.

Libreria Acqua Alta

A really cool bookstore that has a fun reading nook encapsulated by books on the walls. It was really crowded when we went so we were shuffling around a bit and couldn't fully enjoy so maybe head here right when they open if you really want to shop for books. They also have kitties roaming around the store, so cute!

Where to Eat


Our airbnb was literally a 1-minute walk to a GROM gelato shop so we went every night. This meant we ended up not venturing to other places but I was fine with that because their dark chocolate sorbetta is AMAZINGGGGG.

La Calcina

This may have been our favorite meal of the trip and it was a complete accident. We were walking around trying to find food and we were about to leave the area to try somewhere else and I decided to quickly check Google Maps to see if we missed anything and as luck would have it, we did. This hotel with a restaurant was a hidden gem among touristy restaurants on the water.

It was a perfect 1 year anniversary dinner. The bread was the best we had on the trip (yes, we rank bread) and we loved our meal. We shared the Gli spaghetti alla salsa di pomodoroe basilico (basically basil pesto + tomato pasta) and Spiedini di pollo (grilled chicken skewers with vegetables.) For dessert, Christian had tiramisu (with Sicilian citrus) and I had an amazing chocolate torte. There was an older couple eating next to us and when Christian and I swapped plates the husband said "I saw that" and the wife followed up with "we've been doing the same thing for 50 years." Too funny. (they also took a photo for us)

Ristorante Pizzeria Dolfin

Another host recommendation that we went to for lunch. I had a delicious pesto and Christian had creamy ham and cheese tortellini.  I really enjoyed my pesto. It was always great to know that I have a default Italian meal to choose if the rest of the menu had weird items. I'm not the most adventurous eater so sometimes other countries are difficult for me.

Pasticceria Toletta

We stopped by here one morning while we were on a walk across the island to get to the Rialto bridge. I had an apple tart and a chocolate "thing" with biscotti in it and Christian had an almond pastry, so good and very reasonably priced. We spent under 4 Euros for all 3 things.

Pizzeria Ristorante Al Profeta

This was recommended by our airbnb hostess as one of the best pizza places in Venice. We tried the 'Simone' pizza because we were too tempted by the mention of frankfurter on the pizza (it also had sausage and spicy salami.) It was pretty good but we probably should have had a more normal pizza, haha. The restaurant had pictures of old Hollywood actors and was playing American oldies like The Eagles, I really enjoyed it.

La Lista

I had pizza here on my first trip to Venice and it was the best pizza I'd had on my trip so naturally I took Christian here. The crust was still perfection, just as I remembered.

Captain Candy

This is one of the most touristy thing we did, but there are tons of random candy stores throughout Venice and they kept tempting us with tasty treats in the window. So when we passed Captain Candy we had to grab a bag of various sweets!
Our trip to Venice was a bit of a blur. We arrived around 2pm to our airbnb and set out to explore. We tried to watch the sunset from a location our host said was nice but it was a long walk and we realized mid-way that the sun was the opposite side of the city from where she told us to go, haha. Whoops! (Maybe it was still a pretty view?) I ended up not taking photos that day so these are from our first full day in Venice. We started our day by walking through St Marks Square and hopping on a boat to head to San Giorgio Maggiore island so we could go up that bell tower instead of the overcrowded one at St Marks. Unfortunately the elevator was broken and that's the only way to get up the tower so we couldn't do it. We did manage to get these lovely windblown photos on the island before heading back to the mainland for more exploration!

Side note: We went into Prada so I could look for the bag I like (Prada - Cahier Astrology) and found it in PURPLE there - I didn't know they made purple so I was very excited. That's now on my wish list after my Gucci Marmont, but they don't make it anymore so it will be very hard to find once I save up.  Anyway, the girl at the store loved my dress, it's always fun getting complimented on your outfit - especially at Prada. This is one of my favorite dresses so I'm always happy when other people notice it.

Chambray Jacket: Cloth + Stone (shop denim jackets), Dress: Carven Paris Map Print dress (shop more knee length dresses), Sandals: Ancient Greek Sandals 'Alethea' (shop Ancient Greek Sandals),  Bag: Marc by Marc Jacobs 'Natural Selection Mini Messenger Bag', Sunglasses: Chanel (shop oversized sunglasses), Simple Pearl Necklace c/o AUrate

We didn't do many museums on our trip but this was the day of museums. We started at the Uffizi to see some gorgeous paintings (Primavera and Birth of Venus being my favorites,) followed by the Galileo Museum and then Academia to see the Statue of David. We ended the day with a delicious dinner at Trattoria Sostanza.

As you can see I bought myself a little treat at Chanel - a new lipstick! They changed my favorite lipstick earlier this year so I needed to find a color that matches one of my most worn shades of the old formula. I ended up with Rouge Coco Flash in 'Desir' (formerly Rouge Coco Shine.)

Top: Zara (shop floral blouses), Jeans: IRO "Faxy Cropped Jean" (shop boyfriend jeans), Sandals: Ancient Greek Sandals 'Alethea' (shop Ancient Greek Sandals),  Bag: Marc by Marc Jacobs 'Natural Selection Mini Messenger Bag' (shop more Marc Jacobs bags), Sunglasses: Chanel, Simple Pearl Necklace c/o AUrate

And we're off to Florence! I wore this the day we arrived so half the day was spent on a train and getting to our airbnb. But then we were off! We went out to an early dinner and then headed to Piazzale Michelangelo to watch the sunset before getting gelato (which we ate a LOT of.)  This was one of our easier days so we didn't do too much apart from that. We stayed right in the Palazzo della Mercanzia which was a perfect central location!

Top: eight sixty (shop sleeveless blouses), Shorts: Banana Republic (Clinton Crossing), Sandals: Ancient Greek Sandals 'Alethea' (shop Ancient Greek Sandals),  Bag: Marc by Marc Jacobs 'Natural Selection Mini Messenger Bag', Sunglasses: Chanel (shop oversized sunglasses)

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