Friday, 1 August 2014


After I was done with all of my finals, I decided it was time for vacation. All the stress from the past weeks was to be compensated for by some time away from it all. Ultimately, I went on three trips. One to Rimini, Italy, with my family, one to Golden Sands, Bulgaria, with the people from my year, and one to Riva del Garda, Italy, with my best friends.
Those trips provided me with just what I needed: lots of fun and relaxation.

During my time in Italy with my best friends, we payed Venice a day's visit. Driving from Riva del Garda to Venice takes a little more than two hours, the distance being 200 km. So we got up somewhat early and arrived in Venice around 11 am.
Parking is a rather expensive affair in Venice. A regular daily fee is around 26€, no matter whether you park for 3 or for 20 hours. A car parks are located on the edge of the city, because you aren't allowed to go further inwards with a car. Instead, you can walk, like we did, or take a Vaporetto, which is basically a bus in the form of a ship.
a symbol typical for Venice: the winged lion*
I've already been to Venice once, when I was around 13, but it was lovely to completely rediscover the city. We of course wanted to see the main attractions such as the Piazza San Marco, the Ponte di Rialto and the Ponte dei Sospiri. But what I enjoyed most was looking through the little alleys which are called calle. There's just so much to see around every corner!
il Ponte di Rialto 
la Piazza di San Marco
il Ponte dei Sospiri
(did you know its name translates to "bridge of sighs", because it lead to Venice's prison, and it is said that people were able to hear the sighs of the prisoners from this bridge?)
We had a late lunch in a little restaurant a bit off the city centre, which is the best thing you can do. The closer you get to San Marco, the more expensive everything gets. So be clever and don't spend your money carelessly.
It was rather hot on that day, at least 30 degrees Celsius. And so crowded! We meant to have a look at the Basilica di San Marco from the inside, but the queue looked like it would reach three times around the block, so we unfortunately had to skip that. But it was a great trip nonetheless, because there are so many pretty places.
la Basilica di San Marco
part of the Palazzo Ducale to the left, seen from the Piazza di San Marco
After having spent a wonderful day in Venice, our drive back home was a bit more of an adventure. When we left Venice, the sky was full of thick, grey clouds, which soon made for a heavy thunderstorm. Even when it eased off a little, it still didn't provide us with the best driving conditions, which were getting to our driver, who was already quite pissed as she thought she'd been caught speeding.
There's a storm coming up, Mr. Wayne.
lots of rain clouds accompanying us on our way out of Venice*
We already had some trouble finding the motorway, but even more trouble then deciding which direction to go. Luckily, our geography knowledge went as far that we were able to say we needed to go north. But then the motorway parted, and let us choose between Milano (to the west) and Trieste (to the east). And none of us had any idea where to go. If you know Italian motorways, you can agree that there is never much information provided, and you don't have much time to choose which way to go. So our driver just said "fuck it!"and drove off in the direction of Trieste. Which was, as you might have guessed, wrong.
We didn't know about that yet, though, and kept driving for quite a couple of kilometres, me keeping my eyes open for any road signs with cities on it that sounded familiar. And when the first exit came, I was quite shocked. The road sign read something along the lines of Jesolo - Caorle. Both two lovely towns to which I've already been on vacation, and both located at the seaside. Our destination however, Riva del Garda, is far away from the sea. Obviously. Luckily we'd only been driving in the wrong direction for almost an hour, so off we went into the direction we came from, to then get back home.
But at some point we finally made it! And it was quite an educational experience to be honest :D

Hope I didn't bore you with my anecdotes!
Has anyone has a similiar trip to Venice?

xoxo, M

* pictures marked with a * are courtesy of a dear friend of mine. Thanks so much Mau for letting me use those, you're awesome!

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