I know most people don’t enjoy doing crazy touristy things since it’s so cliche, but going to Venice and being a full-blown tourist was probably the best decision I have made. We booked our Airbnb in Treviso (read further for the horrible story about our room), but our main goal was to see the marvelous Venezia, and now I can finally check that off the bucket list too. Oh, and the whole wine and dine factor of Italy didn’t hurt either.
First and foremost, I just want to say that what I’ve learned overall after taking this trip to Italy is that my decision to go up to Spanish 5 in high school was a great one. With the whole traveling factor and having to read signs and ask a multitude of questions, knowing Spanish actually came in super handy. Even with my bad grammar, the Italians understood what I was saying and I understood everything back since the languages are so similar.
We got to Treviso by plane and had to take a bus to our Airbnb, which was conveniently located 6 minutes (by walking) from the train and bus station. We were really excited about this place being in the center of Treviso and making our traveling so much easier. Little did we know we were going to end up having the worst two nights in Italy.
The view from the apartment was phenomenal, the place was very spacious and clean, but the heaters weren’t working. When people state that they “froze to death” somewhere they mostly exaggerate. When I tell you that Tanner and I literally froze to death in that apartment , I’m not exaggerating. The host just so happened to forget to add in the description that the heating is “centralized” and that she “cannot control when it comes on and off”. It was so cold that my lotion became a solid the next day. Before we even experienced the cold, however, we had a different problem. The door. Yes, we couldn’t even open the door to the apartment in order to leave and enjoy our first night in Treviso. There were three different locks on it, and she forgot to tell us that the door actually opens by…wait for it..the light switch. The light switch had a specific button that connected to the door and automatically unlocked it? I had never been more confused. Tanner and I pulled on that thing for 20 minutes. We had to call the host and have her open the door for us since we were literally locked in. By the time she came and apologized, we had lost the daylight. We ended up walking around for a little bit and finding a hidden, yet amazing, pizza place. There we experienced the best wine in Italy, according to Venice locals.
When we came back, we tried to do our homework and watch American Horror Story, but the Internet wasn’t working. At that point, we were very annoyed with this whole Airbnb price and what we received. The next day, as expected, we were both disgustingly sick. Our noses were running (Tanner’s actually started bleeding since he blew it so much), our chests and backs were hurting, and we both had stiff necks and horrible coughs. That wasn’t going to stop us from going to Venice though. We first went and got some tea and stopped at this amazing bakery down the corner( best pastries I have ever had in my entire life and for 2 large croissants, 2 cream/jelly filled things, and a hazelnut cream filled pastry it only cost us 4 euros which was incredible). Afterwards, we finally walked over to the train station and I tried buying us tickets to Venice, but guess what? The Treviso train employees were on strike and no trains were even stopping in Venice.
Tanner pretty much gave up on going as soon as he heard that since he doesn’t exactly enjoy when things don’t go as planned, but I stayed calm and asked the cashier what other options we had to get there. There was no way I was missing my gondola ride. That’s where it got complicated. We basically had to take a bus to Preganziol, then buy another bus ticket from there for a different bus, then get on another bus after that. I asked multiple locals a bunch of questions ( we met a lot of nice people on the way), and within an hour we had arrived in Venice. Even though finding out where bus stops/ bus stations were located when you don’t know the language and territory was super hard, reading the signs and asking questions with my mix of English and Spanish really helped us out. It was a bit nerve-wrecking, but it was figured out in the end. The bus rides as a whole ended up costing each of us less than 8 euros, and we got a great view of regular Italy too. I actually enjoyed it very much.
As for Venice, it was absolutely as magical as everyone tells you it is.
We, like I said before, did all the touristy things such as getting a gondola ride. It was a once in a lifetime opportunity, and it just had to be done. Let me tell you, it was worth it.
Also, a fun fact about the gondola is that after skipping about 8 different ones throughout our day there, the one we ended up choosing was named , “Giulia”. Obviously, I took that as a great sign and my life was made. I mean, what are the odds that out of all the ones in Venice the one gondola I chose would have my name on it? I never find my name ON ANYTHING. Not even keychains, t-shirts, or coffee mugs. It’s okay though, because the gondola being named that made up for everything.
One of my favorite things about Venice was the architecture surrounding us. Everything is built so beautifully, and when I think of how old that city is and realize that I walked through it, I genuinely get butterflies. So much incredible history.
Also, can we just talk about their sweets (and food in general)? Best gelato I’ve ever had.
As you can see, Tanner was very much wonderstruck by Venice. We both honestly had the best time there and didn’t want to come home.
Words (and pictures) don’t even do Venice justice. I absolutely fell in love with it, and I would come back a thousand times more.