Venice? Anyone?

Discussion in 'Travel' started by smudge67, Sep 5, 2008.

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  1. Right you crazy cats. I'm off to Venice this afternoon for a long weekend....because I can.

    As it's a bit of a spur of the moment thing I've done no reading up on the place, and no idea what there is to do there, except some Bassilica (?) and some buildings stood in shitty water.

    So...has anyone been before? I need some things to do. Places to eat and drink (no bloody Irish bars though, I'll reserve them for the rugby tours)

    Any advice welcome.
  2. I've been.

    Things I noticed.

    The locals dont pay for water buses, why should you ? We bought one ticket the first time and just kept it in case we got rumbled.

    Japanese tourists like pigeons

    Its freezing in Feb

    The Lido is very quiet off season.

    Really its one of those "wander around and eat / drink for a couple of days places.
  3. Don't eat round the St Marks Piazza its a rip off, they charge well over the odds and there are plenty of little piazzas with nice resturaunts to eat in.

    Get a day pass for the Vaperettos (water bus) dead cheap and makes life a lot easier to get around, good fun too.

    Be prepared to walk a lot though, so take a comfy pair of shoes, Venitians walk fast and furious.

    A trip to the island of Murano is recommended as they make all the glass trinkets there, I got a nice birthday pressy for my other half, granted some of it is very tacky but they do some nice stuff there too.

    Eat lots of ice cream, no one in the world makes it like the Italians.

    A trip over to the Lido is also recommended, see how the other half live, some seriously big houses there and the casino.

    If I think of anything more I'll let you know
  4. Tag on the end of any big groups of Americans/Japs to get entry into some of the better glass tours.
  5. Cheers all. How come ARRSE isn't "copy and paste"able nowadays? I'm not typing all that out! Will make some notes.

    Someone else mentioned some famous glass type stuff that's made over there.

    Isn't a Lido a swimming pool??

    I'm not on a tight budget per se, but I'm not one for getting ripped off either.
  6. Venice area is the only bit of italy that has a drink problem and where getting lashed in as socially acceptable as the UK. Try something called " Spritz " . Bit like campari and soda with olive . Sounds poncy but really nice on a hot day .
    Basilica is great but a bit culture overload . You can only cope with so much art .
    Eat and drink where the locals eat and drink . Prices there are the same as the rest of Italy .
  7. Smudge,

    Campo Santa Margarita in the San Polo district is a great place to sit and watch the world go by. It's very lively and full of locals rather than the tourist hordes who will probably get on your nerves quite quickly. Lots of reasonable bars and restaurants, kids playing football in the street and a good slice of Venetian life.

    It's quieter up by the Arsenale as well and the prices are (a bit) more reasonable.

    The fish market (Pesceria, I think) is fantastic and so it the veg market next to it, just by the Rialto.

    If you want to go on a gondola but don't want to be robbed, try a traghetto - locals use them to cross the Grand Canal for 60p a trip.

    The bars on St Marks Square are brilliant, esp Florians, but a round of drinks could cost as much as £50. Harry's Bar is even more expensive and not worth the bother.

  8. Going to Murano is a good way to get a free (normally about £60) water taxi ride. There are touts about the place who'll offer you a lift over, but there's no obligation to buy anything as long as you shrug off the hard sell.

    The Irish bar is great, but then I was on a Rugby tour so I think I can be excused. The day after match day every time I turned a corner in Venice another bleary-eyed figure in London irish regalia would be stumbling around...
  9. loads of shops full of puppets & facemasks
    theres also a little shop off st marks square(on the way past where a load of gondolas park up IIRC)
    that sells metal miniatures - had hitler, goebels, mussolini etc(sodding missus wouldn't let me buy them though :( )
    loads of walking but hopping on the waterbus is a piece of urine
    overall a very cool place to go
  10. Thanks all. Time to pack, as I'm off to the airport in a couple of hours. Some good info, will have a quick look before I do one, just in case there's some last minute pearls of wisdom.

    Much appreciated. I'll have a drink or 2 for you all.
  11. The OH & I went there for a long w/e about Sep 98. It's OK for that length of visit, but if you go for a week or more you might be bored.
    As other posters have suggested, waterbus (Vaporetto) is the easiest way to cut about; that's what the locals use. Steer clear of gondolas - they're hellish expensive & water taxis can be too.
    If you stay in one of the hotels on the edge of the lagoon (we stayed at Londra Palace) you need to get out early, as after about 0900 you can hardly exit the front door due to the solid phalanxes of Jap tourist walking tours blocking the pavement.
    Whilst on pavements, watch your step whilst walking about! Lots of Venetians are dog owners, & a lot of them don't like picking up their poo, or at least didn't when I was there.
    The island where all the glass is made (Murano) is worth a visit. Prices range from cheap & nasty to horrendously expensive, & touts outside the glass factories will try & suck you in for a guided tour. Be selective.
    St.Mark's Square is nice, but floods easily from September onwards. Stay away from the cafes there, they cost an arm & a leg.
    Some of the jewellers' shops in St.Mark's are great for gifts, although expensive. If you're looking for a special present, this is one of the best places to go for it. Venetians love shopping & selling goods is an art form to them. Nothing is too much trouble, some of them will get the entire stock out for you to browse if they think they'll make a sale & the staff in some of these shops (notably the ladies) are immaculate. Customer service in this country could learn a lot from them. I bought a pair of shades similar to Wayfarers there, the assistant got about 40 pairs out for me to browse through before I made my selection, & put the others away carefully afterwards without a complaint, surly look etc. Imagine that happening here!
    Eating & drinking: I bought one of those Time Out guides before I went, gives you all the info re: prices & quality & lots of maps, so everything was easy to find. I had the best ice cream I've ever had in my life from a little cart in one of the backstreet squares there, & reasonably priced too.
    Along the seafront by the lagoon is a military museum which is worth a look, a lot of it is Naval orientated because of Venice's history but interesting nonetheless. They have a fascinating collection of human torpedoes & diving suits etc. which the Italians were adept at using in the Med. Photography not allowed.
    Finally, you won't regret going there. Venice is achingly cool, a lecher's paradise & definitely one of those places to see before you die. Enjoy.
  12. Maccy D's is nice
  13. From the title of the thread I thought you were offering to take someone. Bugger
  14. Me too :cry: :cry: :cry:
  15. YesItsMe

    YesItsMe LE Good Egg (charities)

    been there several times - would only recommend it off season
    cause everything is double expensive during the summer and totally overcrowded
    and you should be interested in history to enjoy the stay
    otherwise you will find the place 'dirty - stinking - vulgar'