venice: medievil city, colorful decay

Venice, oh Venice, you are so...so...
finish the sentence: full of interesting architecture, strange, incredibly historic (read up on the history of Venice - it's so so interesting), weirdly beautiful, saturated with tourists, cool, sinking, hot.
All of those thoughts came into our heads at the same time.

We spent 2 nights / 1 day in Venice and it was great day full of Venetian fun (I would love to be from Venice just so I could say I'm Venetian):
  • Took 5 trains from Interlaken to Venice. The trains in Switzerland are much different from the trains in Italy. Let's just say we felt right at home when we boarded the Italian trains (what's that smell? why is it so hot?)
  • Arrived at the train station and realized for the first time of our whole trip neither of us speak this country's language.
  • Hopped on a water bus (no wheels in Venice, just boats) and headed down the Grand Canal while Rick Steves talked to us via audioguide about all the historical buildings along the canal.
  • Got off the boat and got lost trying to find our hotel. Getting lost is easy and fun in Venice.
  • Checked into the dustiest hotel ever - I sneezed 15 times in row. The bathroom was bright green though.
  • Found some pizza for dinner and went to bed.
  • Hit Piazza San Marco with all the major historical buildings in Venice.
  • Clock Tower tour of the 2nd most famous clock in the world. Our tour guide was awesome - so sweet and Polish. And I rocked at answering all her questions.
  • Saw the amazingly eclectic Basilica di San Marco. Oooed and ahhed (isn't it annoying when people say oooed and ahhed?) at the incredible gold mosaics. Possibly Forrest's favorite church of the trip.
  • Went next door to the Doge's Palace (home of the ruling duke). It looks like a wedding cake.
  • Went across Piazza San Marco to the boring Correr Museum.
  • Ate delicious gelato at La Boutique del Gelato and then did some shopping. And then went right back for more. It was soooo good.
  • Got lost again.
  • Instituted and observed the very strict Italian Siesta Plan.
  • Walked to the Rialto Bridge. Crowded and smokey - it's much better viewed from the water bus.
  • Ate a forgettable dinner somewhere, but the conversation was good. We laughed a lot.
  • Went back to Piazza di San Marco to listen to the dueling orchestras.
  • The next morning we took the water bus back to the train station and BARELY caught our train (literally, 10 seconds later and we would have missed it).

Rialto Bridge

We're lost.

The Clock Tower: world's first digital clock.

Obviously I didn't take this picture. I wanted to record what St. Mark's Basilica looks like because it's really cool, but half of it was covered for restoration and too blindingly bright to get a photo.
Inside by iPhone:

Seriously, the mosaics in here - AMAZING! I wish I would have broken the rules and popped out the camera.

Doge's Palace:

This gelato was sooo good.

The mini canals really were the coolest part of Venice:

Colorful decay everywhere.

Masquerade, anyone?

Let the musical duel begin!

That's Venice as we saw it.
Very cool to see and experience for a day.
Living there...not so much (but people have told me that about NYC, so maybe it would be kinda fun to live in Venice. No. No it wouldn't).


  1. Hahahaha, I am laughing at your last comment. I had no idea Venice was so stinky and undesirable! I always thought of it as this intensely romantic place that is so beautiful and amazing. I do love your pictures, even and perhaps especially the blurry ones. So lovely.

  2. wait - what languages does forrest speak?

  3. This is so awesome to follow you around Europe. You're such a good writer!
    p.s. I think you should introduce yourself as a Venetian anyway!

  4. Hi Abbie, yes this is Angie's mom enjoying your Europe vacation and getting some great tips on Switzerland. Great Camera work!! Angie is a good teacher. tee hee
    By the way did you buy a swiss pass or something else since you were Country hoping and we were wondering if you took any of the scenic trains or just went on regular trains thru the scenic areas? It is so confusing and we are trying to buy our passes on line before we go. Since we will only be in Switzerland, it seems the Swiss pass is the best, but some books say to buy certain trains when you get there, since there are first and second class and multiple persons discounts and also scenic trains leave at different time. Yikes!! See how confused I am.
    We are bringing Brian's father and our 15 year old and son, so let me know what advice you have on the trains. I figure Forrest is an expert since he served his mission there and you just returned. Oh and by the way we booked the same hotel as you in that lovely Lauterbrunen valley. You just made it look that good!! My G-mail is sharlagraf@gmail.com if it is easier to respond that way! Thanks!!

  5. I've been DYING to get caught up on your blog!!! This week as been NUTS with our move!

    OH my word!!! Abbie White. You are seriously SO CUTE!!!! I love all of these posts. I really felt like a got a little European vacation this summer and it couldn't of come at a better time!

    The Switzerland post was GORGEOUS!!! You take such amazing pictures, I feel like we were right there with you! Breath-taking!!!

    And the Whites are AMAZING!!! What a perfect treat for E&A to get some R and R at Grandmas house with cousins. Win/Win!!! I can't even imagine how sublime that must of been to know how happy and safe they were. A worry free trip to Switzerland sounds like heaven! You both deserve it!!! When the nights get long this next semester, you can scroll through these pictures again and regain the energy and joy of this trip! I'm seriously sooo happy that things worked out so smoothly!!! :)

  6. love, love LOVED Venice. Your pictures bring back so many memories. AHHH amore! St. Marks square is one of the most AMAZINGLY romantic places It wasn't stinky when I went(Sept)just TONS of pigeons it WAS incredibly easy to get lost but that's part of the adventure! My girlfriend (travel buddy while I was single) and I even went on a gondola ride. I am loving your Europe blogs and I am anxiously awaiting your Italy posts (since I've been there before) I keep making Nick read them and try to convince him that we need to go on a Europe trip :)

  7. forrest looks good with a giant gelato mustache.

  8. Venice had the best

    of all the italian towns I visited (when I was there 290 years ago).

    Of course that is what I remember most.

  9. Sigh. I want to go. Badly. (That pizza picture is hilarious!)