Saturday, January 8, 2011

Venice and gondola ride

We stayed the night in Venice and travelled to the pier in the morning to get to the islands of Venice. This city stretches across 117 small islands in the marshy Venetian Lagoon along the Adriatic Sea in northeast Italy. The saltwater lagoon stretches along the shoreline between the mouths of the Po (south) and the Piave (north) Rivers. The island of Venice is not technically connected to the mainland in any way. There is a bridge, the Ponte della Libertia, which is the official connection. We took a boat (water taxi) to get to one of the islands. Piazza San Marco (Saint Mark's Square), is the principal square of Venice, Italy, where it is generally known just as "the Piazza". All other urban spaces (except the Piazzetta) are called campi. Venice is usually flooded this time of the year and we were praying for low tide on the day of our visit. There are platforms built for walking convenience. A pair of wellington boots would be good during this time. .St. Mark's Cathedral of Vince (above picture) is also known as St. Mark's Basilica and is the most famous cathedral in the city of Venice. Look closely for The Quadriga (Four Horses of Saint Mark)
Situated on the North side of St. Mark's square the Clock Tower (Torre dell'Orologio) was built
in the 14th Century as a display of Venice's wealth, and as an aid to sailors on the Grand Canal. The large face displays hours, phases of the moon, and even the movement of the sun through the signs of the Zodiac.
A well used in the medieval time.
Islands are accessible by bridges.
On two-sides of Piazza San Marco, facing each other are cafes and shops.The Doge's Palace (Palazzo Ducale di Venezia) started in the ninth century, several times rebuilt, and completed in the Renaissance period, forms part of that great scheme of town planning which was carried out through successive centuries.Sculpture of Adam and Eve on one of the gigantic columns of The Doge Palace.
Gondolas at the pier. Grand Canal in the foreground.
Our gondola 'driver' had great difficulty manoeuvering the boat as our umbrellas blocked his view. It got scary at times when we approached a narrow canal.
The water rose and had started to seep into the house.
The water has subsided by the time we got back on the island after our awesome, interesting gondola ride. Our next destination was lunch.
We had the most interesting lunch. Squid-ink spaghetti was what we had. Most of us burst out laughing after taking the first mouthful as our teeth and lips were black. It was a hilarious sight as none of us was aware that our teeth and lips would be stained black! The taste was not bad at all in fact, it tasted creamy and good. Back home I remembered that each time I cleaned a squid, I had to throw away the pocket of ink as my mother told me it was poisonous!
The above is pan del doge a sweet of friable dough, raisins, hazel nuts, almonds and white whine of Venetia. Try this as it is found only in the Tuscany region (what I was told). This is a sweet tasting bread made from ingredients reaped from the surrounding grounds that was very sparse as the Villa of the Doge was built near a swamp.
Our next destination was Milan. :o)
**Day 7

5 comments:

Euniceee said...

Venice and Gondola ride is my ''100 to-do-list'' before i die!!haha!

ken said...

ahh.. i can feel the feeling of being there thru your photos.. too bad it was kinda rainy that day huh? wish to be there one day.. :)

Bubbles...ooo said...

Hi Eunicee,
Make it there, it is really beautiful. All the best. :o)

Bubbles...ooo said...

Hi Ken, U feel like u r there huh? TQ means my pic not too badly taken eh? It rained alright but glad that the water did not rise too high. :o)

MiqTravellers said...

Nicee. Too bad the weather wasn't prefect. Looking forward for your next post :)