|Bridge outside the hotel entrance|
|We’re not so bright-eyed today|
|We saw a storekeeper sweeping the street with this broom|
|Love these old public fountains|
We left the hotel at 7:45 and walked to a water bus station where a boat took all of us to St. Mark’s Square.
|Tour group walking to boat pickup|
This time we went around instead of via canals. This was another reason I was glad we took the Magical Venice optional.
|Glass blowing demonstration|
After the demonstration we were taken inside the showroom and shown various types of works as well as the “specials”. No pictures were allowed in there but there was a lot of beautiful pieces and even venetian masks.
We looked around, took advantage of the restrooms and shopped (I bought myself the necklace special with earrings) and then waited outside for a good 30 minutes for the group’s stragglers. It was very annoying!
Finally Brad rounded everyone up and we took a boat to where we were meeting our Gondolas. This is an included event.
We were on the first gondola and he turned out to be very crabby. We were yelled at for the slightest movement. I was facing backwards but he did give me permission to turn around and take a picture of the Bridge of Sighs.
|Bridge of Sighs|
There was a singing gondolier on the third gondola but we could barely hear him.
It was interesting riding down the smaller, quieter canals. Unfortunately, we got rained on during this event but it was still unique and fun; not something I need to do again.
|Bridal party in St. Mark’s Square|
|Cafe Laverna Orchestra|
|Selfie in front of Bridge of Sighs|
|Panorama of St. Mark’s Square|
Afterwards we were on our own until meeting the optional tour, Hidden Venice. We walked one block over to restaurant row and found a place with a 12.50 euro set price lunch (menu de giorno). Steve had spaghetti with marinara sauce for his primi and chicken with green salad for his secondi.
My choices were lasagne and fried fish with green salad. We had still water to drink and I had a cafe americano afterwards.
including small side streets, churches without facades, and the most incredible views.
|Unique corner window|
|Drain to catch rainwater|
|Shop selling Venetian Masks|
|Notice the rooftop gardens|
It started raining pretty hard the last 10 minutes of the walk but I had an umbrella and Steve had his rain jacket so it wasn’t too uncomfortable. I highly recommend this tour.
|Courtyard Window at St. George of the Greeks Church|
|Leaning Tower at St. George of the Greeks Church|
|Courtyard Door at St. George of the Greeks Church|
|A lesson to look up. None of us had seen this baroque church until Monica told us.|
|scuola grande di san marco|
The rain stopped right at the end and we had our gelato of the day. Steve had banana and mint chocolate chip. I had pistachio and mint chocolate chip.
We then walked to the meeting spot and waited about 20 minutes for the ride back. We had almost two hours back in the room before leaving for the optional Burano dinner. I took a very needed short nap.
was served at Da Romano.
|Burano’s Leaning tower|
I found a bakery and bought a bag of cookies for us to enjoy on the bus rides.
We sat at a round table with Steve, Jan, Cheryl, Rick, and Kay (Sydney). This was our best meal yet! Bread, butter and the zibibbo wine were on the table along with water.
We also ordered a pitcher of red for those that preferred it.
We started with risotto. This restaurant has won awards for their risotto and I can see why.
Then we had seafood spaghetti which was fantastic. I had seconds of each!
Our plates were refreshed and then came the salad which was already dressed and seasoned. Next was the secondi. We had fried fish, fried calamari,
fried vegetables (carrots and zucchini?)
|Chan’s birthday cake|
It was Chan’s birthday (he and Fiona are from Singapore) and the waiters brought out the cake intact and we all sang happy birthday. The cake was
amazing! It looks like a meringue topping but was actually whipped cream. Chan and Fiona treated everyone to a sparking wine toast.
Then we had fruit cups followed by a shot of amaretto and hard cookies. Last we were served expresso for those that wanted it.
|Line up of empty glasses|
Our table had a great time and the waiter asked if we would pose for pics if I would post on Facebook. Cheryl and I posed with he waiters and i posted it on the restaurant’s Facebook page. I did that before leaving to catch the bus.
the way back to the hotel and we all said our good nights.