The ride from Verona to Venice was a little over an hour. The views that passed by the train window were beautiful. Once we reached the water we knew we were close.
When the train pulled into the station we followed the crowed outside. Once we exited the building the stairs from the station lead right to the water taxis and to a breathtaking sight.
The entirety of Venice is an island connected by waterways. You can walk the brick/stone pathways and cross the bridges to get from section to section. However, to get to the mainland you must go by boat.
Their “buses” here are boats. To navigate, you find the right “bus” number that’s heading in the right direction and hop off when it gets to your stop. The “buses” run 24/7.
To get to our hostel we had to buy a bus/boat pass. The passes are €7.50 a ticket, or you can buy a 3 day deal for €28.00. The latter was defiantly the way to go. We bought our passes and headed to our stop.
At first I thought that the boat stop itself was the actual boat. It was boxed in and floating on water. I figured out that I was wrong when the boat pulled up to our floating platform. Once everyone off we let off climbed aboard.
We walked passed the seats and through the back doors of the boat. We sat in the back, which was composed of nine seats in a semi circle and had a railing so you did not fall off and into the water. We rode several stops and got off where the directions told us to go. It did not take long to find the hostel. It was a few doors down to the right of our stop, right along the water.
We checked into hostel “Generator,” got our key cards and rode the elevator to the second floor. The hostel itself coast us €40.00. Normally I would never spend more than a maximum of €30.00, but this was supposed to be an awesome hostel, so we decided to splurge on it. It did pay off, the hostel was fantastic.
We stayed in room 102, a mixed (co-ed) 8-10 people dorm. The beds on each bunk had their own light, outlet, and complete privacy. We locked our belongings in the pullout-style lockers beneath the beds and headed out to the city.
We took the bus/boat to the next stop and just decided to walk from there.
While looking for something to eat we passed a girl with my sorority letters and I had to stop and say hello. Turns out she is from Texas and on vacation with her family. After a short conversation with her, we continued to search for food.
Everything we passed was over €12.00. Eventually we had to give in and deal with the price. We sat outside at a little walled in corner at a place called “Malibran.” I ordered a glass of moscato and mushroom and cream ravioli.
The mushrooms were squishy and the ravioli was filled with some strange green spice. They brought out a basket of bread and a dish of parmesan cheese (which seems to always be on the tables). Jamie wine and a cuddle fish dish. We sat and talked for a while.
I love that in Italy it is completely natural to sit for a long time during a meal and relax and talk. We spent some time doing so and then went to explore.
We crossed lots and lots of bridges and watched people eating along the water or taking a ride in a gondola. Eventually we started to follow the signs to St. Marks Square. It is a big open square with the cathedral at the top.
There are four bronze horses over looking the entrance at the top of the building. I remembered reading that the horses are replicas of the famous horses that have been stolen and re-stolen throughout history.
Off to the side of the cathedral are two stone pillars, sitting a good hundred feet or so apart from each other. Locals avoid walking between the pillars, as it is supposed to bring bad luck if you walk between them.
I walked around them to keep with the culture, and Jamie stuck her foot in between them. I told her if any bad luck was brought upon us during this trip it was her fault. Not that I am superstitious at all…but, “when in [Italy].”
After getting our fill of the St Marks Square, we walked around the streets with the intention of getting lost.
Soon, we came across a bar where handfuls of people were sitting on the ledge of the channel, sipping drinks and socializing. We decided to do the same.
We each ordered a drink inside at the small bar, then sat at the ledge and talked. I ordered a “spritz.” It is a type of sweet, orange drink that is popular in Italy- I was told it was specifically popular in Venice. They add an orange slice and olive to top it off. It was delicious.
The sun began to set after a long time of sitting and enjoying the view. We walked around for a bit more.
We ran into some beautiful buildings to which we had no clue what they were.
Finally we headed back to the hostel for the night.