Thursday, September 5, 2013

Italy Adventures Part Two

If you are just catching up with my Italy travel recap, make sure you read this post first.  I do not want you all missing any portion of Italy.  Oh Italy, how I miss thee.  Now I am craving gelato.

Anyway, when last we "talked", Eric and I were in Assisi, in route to Venice.  So, after a beautiful night in the quiet town of Assisi, we hopped on our tour bus and headed North to Venice for days 7 and 8.

Venice is the quintessential spot to visit in Italy. It is sold as being beautiful and romantic and while I can see why some people love it, it was not our favorite.  The architecture is beautiful and the history is interesting, but be prepared to be in a sea of tourists and feel the constant need to protect your valuables.  In an effort to see Venice without having to fight crowds, we spent the majority of our time in Venice on boats.

We started with a boat cruise up the Grand Canal, which was fabulous.  Then, we took a gondola ride complete with musicians and champagne.  It was actually really fun- the singer had quite the personality and our gondolier kept trying to knock him off the boat.

The rest of the day, we spent wandering the streets of Venice and touring the Doge's Palace.  We stumbled upon an amazing fish market, which was really fun to see.

Day two in Venice wasn't actually spent in "Venice".  We escaped to Murano and Burano instead.  Murano is home to the famous Murano glass factory; we watch glass blowing demonstrations and then did some shopping.  Burano is a another little island, which is absolutely adorable. Every house is painted a different color for identification purposes.  They say that the sailors in the town would come back to port so drunk that the only way that they could identify their home was by the color it was painted.

We had an amazing seafood feast in Burano!

Day 9 we left Venice and went to Lake Como for a quick stop over.  We didn't spend the night in Lake Como- one afternoon spent in boat was enough there.

I looked all over for George Clooney, but just couldn't find him.

That evening, we drove down by Florence to spent the night.  We had dinner at a gorgeous Tuscan vineyard; ate and drank way too much.

Check out that appetizer spread!

Day 10 was spent touring Florence.  If I have one regret of our trip, it is not spending more time in Florence.  It was a gorgeous city.

We basically just did a quick tour to see David, raced through shopping at a couple of leather stores and then hiked around the city as quickly as possible.  I could have spent a week just in Florence.

Day 11 meant that we were headed back to Rome.  In route, we did a quick stop to see Pisa though and took the necessary photos.

That tower is leaning.  Really, really, leaning.

And just like that, our vacation was over.  We spent one more day in Rome wandering around, eating copious amounts of gelato and pasta and then boarded our plane back home.

If I ever get back to Italy again, it will be to spend a little more time in Florence and the Tuscan countryside.  I would definitely also make a point to get to Cinque Terre because I have seen the pictures and it looks unbelievable.

Overall though, I feel like we got to see an amazing portion of Italy in the time that we spent there and it will definitely be remembered as a trip of a lifetime.

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