Travel Diary – Venice
So, for my 21st Birthday, my boyfriend took me to Venice for five days. I’m incredibly lucky to have a boyfriend as thoughtful as he is. I’ve known since Christmas we were going, because he was too excited to keep it a secret and I would have pestered the life out of him until he spilled the beans. I opened all my present on Christmas morning, already feeling spoilt, when I was handed a card. I opened the card to find a mini scratch card which said “I couldn’t wait to tell you, we’re going to…” and then I had to sractch the place off!
We’re quite the travellers, since I met him he’s really brought the wanderlust bug out in me! In less than a year we’ve been to York, Amsterdam, Paris, London, Manchester, Kielder Forest, Brampton (Glamping! I’ll get round to that blog post sooner or later…) Venice and Spain, we’re heading to Mexico in September too.
We travelled to Leeds, Bradford on my birthday, the night before we flew since we had an extremely early morning flight. We stopped in a nearby Travelodge which by the way, was great. Cheap, clean, friendly and most importantly a 5-minute walk away from the airport itself. THIS IS NOT SPONSERED but I really do want to mention the fact that my room for the night was only £40 since they had a discount running around the time we booked AND airport parking was only £30 for 6 days! Absolute bargain, so if you’re traveling to another airport, take the added stress and rush by booking a Travelodge beforehand!
Leeds Bradford, although a small airport is still really nice and catered for my beauty addiction as I browsed the YSL counter. We grabbed some breakfast and within no time, we were boarding our plane. We flew with Jet2, a great budget airline with extra leg room where you don’t feel like your crammed in! The flight was only 2 hours, a breeze really. We flew to Venice Marco Polo airport, already briefed from friends and family who’d visited Venice, advised us to grab a water taxi, which was quicker and cheaper than a taxi. We paid €15 each to get to main city Venice and it took us just under an hour to get to our stop. We’d researched which stop we needed to get off at since Venice on a map can look rather confusing. Our stop was the famous Rialto Bridge, one tourist attraction ticked off the list literally as soon as we got there!
We found our hotel, which had a rustic, traditional Italian feel to it. It could not have been in a better spot, right near everything. Not that anything in Venice is particularly far away since you can transport everywhere on foot, but you know what I mean. Since we had an early flight, it meant we had near enough a full day to explore. Venice is probably the prettiest city I’ve ever been, you know those Pinterest images you see everywhere of Venice and videos on Facebook? That’s exactly what it’s like.
We headed to HardRock Café in Venice when we arrived, had a few cocktails and of course went to a back street Italians and had traditional dishes like spag bol and pizza. I’m not going to lie, Italian restaurants over there are something else. I’m sure they make their pasta differently or use another ingredient because oh my god… amazing. My mouths watering just thinking about it! And that’s pretty much all we ate all week, carbs. We drank a lot of Aperol Spritz too, which is now officially my favourite drink! Price wise for food, depending on where you eat can be expensive. The further away you are from major tourist attractions, the cheaper it is but food generally it’s the same price as it is back at home. Pizza’s ranging from €6-12, pastas from €10-15. My favourite dish I had while I was there was seafood pasta, there was literally so much seafood in there, nothing like a few stingy Italians I’ve been up to up here. Drinks cost wise, expensive. There’s no top and bottom about it, that’s where 80% of our money went, on alcohol! A glass of wine ranges from €10-20, again depending on the position of the bar/restaurant, for example HardRock Café was right next to St Mark’s Square so we were paying €16 per drink. Ouch! We went to the local supermarket and got a bottle of Prossecco one night which came in at only €3, so definitely pre drink ha!
We visited a lot of the tourist attractions throughout the week like St Mark’s Cathedral. It was simply breath taking, a catholic myself, although I don’t go to church as much as I should admittedly, was a fantastic experience! We of course, went on a Gondola over the Grand Canal which cost us an arm and a leg… €80 for 15 minutes. I know, RIP OFF but we wanted to do it and it was all about the experience however we were slightly disappointed that ours didn’t sing ‘One Cornetoooooo!’ Harry’s Bar, the oldest bar in Venice was also at the top of our trip agenda to try the famous and secret recipe of their Peach Bellini! I can report and confirm that the Bellini was like nothing I’ve ever tasted before. We even managed to go to Verona for the day since it’s only an hour away on the train. Trains in Venice are extremely cheap, we paid €18 each to get there and back in one day. Verona was beautiful, another traditional Italian town full of history including being most heard of from Shakespears famous Romeo and Juliet. We visited Juliet’s house and balcony which was very educational, I felt like I was back in a year 11 GCSE class. We also went to Verona’s famous colosseum, about half of which is still in its original state! Opera is usually held there which I can only imagine is wonderful on a warm summers night.
Weather wise, three out of five days the sun was cracking the pavement however the other two were miserable and rainy. It didn’t dampen our spirits (can’t say the same about or clothes or my hair though!), and we carried on exploring the delights of Verona.
Overall, we had a fantastic trip away, I am so grateful to my boyfriend for organising such a marvellous break away. I would recommend visiting Venice to anyone thinking about going, my advice is:
- Make sure you save up, Venice is expensive
- Clothes wise, take comfortable clothing and shoes
- Go to backstreet Italians
- Grab a bottle of prosseco and sit by a canal on a night
- 5 days is just the right amount
Have you been to Venice before?