Ciao Bella Italy (P.2) - Lost in Venice

Phuong Ng.

Following my dream journey to Italy, the next destination I visited was Venice, a city that almost every traveler wishes to visit once. I once read a newspaper report which mentions that the average number of tourists in Venice per year is 400 times as many as the number of local residents.

Usually, most people visit Venice during Spring – Summer, where the sky is clear and blue, the days are sunny and the weather is warm, all the things that make the beauty of Venice canals truly what they are. However I came to Venice during the cold days of January, yet, there were still benefits. Firstly, prices were generally cheaper compared to peak season, especially in terms of hotels. Next, this is the time when Venice receives the least number of tourists, and I could feel more relaxed and comfortable wandering around, exploring every corner of the city while enjoying the calm atmosphere and not being packed or surrounded by thousands of other people. The picture of Venice I have always seen from videos is a sunny Venice full of people, life and activities. To me, I prefer a quieter Venice because this is when you can feel the true beauty of the place.  Yes it was cold, gloomy in January but luckily there was no rain and flood during my visit.

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Venice is small enough for you to walk to everywhere and getting around is also easy. There are more than 400 bridges crossing many canals in the “City of Bridges.”

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Besides the bridges, I ought to mention the hidden alleys across the island. I could easily feel lost anywhere I travel to but there’s something about Venice that makes my statement ‘getting lost in Venice’ means both literally and figuratively. Literally speaking, I got lost so many times that it took me forever to get to the places I wanted to go, also because my phone signal was not the best for the use of Google map. But somehow I really like this feeling of getting lost because I started discovering many new things in the city before finally reaching the main destination feeling like I just won a prize.  I may sound like exaggerating but that’s honestly my true feeling for Venice.

Figuratively, by putting Google Map aside, I felt a comfortable sense of being lost. I felt lost but free, relaxed with a calm mind, and I realized how important it is for me to slow down sometimes, to observe more so I can create a positive attitude about the way I look at myself, at what I am having and what I am aiming to reach.

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Another interesting thing about Venice is the iconic Venetian masks. During the Venice Carnival every year, people would dance and gather while wearing these masks, creating a colorful and beautiful festive scene, a scene which is something very Venetian. You will see many types of masks in many different shops in Venice these days, ranging from different colors and styles.  

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I don’t know how many more times I have to say to show how much I am fascinated about the architecture of Cathedrals in Italy, from structure, the paintings on the ceiling to the lights and windows; they are all masterpieces to me. In this journey, I did come in Saint Mark Cathedral where no photographs were allowed inside. 

In addition, there’s no reason not to see other attractions in Venice such as San Marco Square, Grand Canal, Rialto Bridge, etc.

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Piazza San Marco

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View from St Mark’s Basilica

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Rialto Bridge

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Bridge of Sighs

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Grand Canal

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Finally, if you have time I strongly recommend you not to miss out the neighboring island of Venice which is Murano, the island well known for the art of glassblowing. It only takes around half an hour to get there from Venice city by water bus.  

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So that is the end of my dream journey to Italy for now. I really love this country and nonstop seeking chances to return and visit more cities. I sincerely hope that the wish I made at Trevi Fountain will become true as soon as possible.

Phuong Ng.

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