Venice looked a little different this time around – maybe it had aged in the (almost) 10 years since my last visit or maybe I had. The October clouds and fog gave Venice a more mysterious feel than the sunny cheerfulness of my previous visit when the May sun and blue skies reminded me of a certain hotel in Vegas. Venice was the first stop of our trip and we were both equally exhausted from our daily lives, ready for some relaxation. And this sinking city provided exactly that – from our apartment in the San Polo area, to the delicious seafood pasta and wine (I ate squid ink pasta every chance I got), to the beautiful pastel buildings, we were there for just 3 days but it was a good transition from the go-go-go of our day-to-day to sipping wine on our balcony in Capri watching the sun set over the sea (post coming soon).
I took the Mamiya with me on this trip and took a few shots in Venice. The camera failed on me when we were in Capri, and from the scans, you could tell it was already on its last leg here. The last picture below has a weird light leak that made it look like it was taken with a toy camera.
I really enjoyed staying in the San Polo area, across the Rialto bridge from the more-touristy San Marco. It’s well-known for its restaurants and was also a quick walk to get to the Cannaregio district, a more residential area, where we would eat along a canal and take photos of the pastel houses along the waterways.
A few places to eat in Venice:
Do Spade: During business hours, there’s always a crowd spilling out into the narrow alley from its front door. Tourists and locals alike come for the cichetti, a Venetian specialty, of small plates and wine. We opted to bypass the craziness of the crowd and eat in the restaurant instead. Unfortunately, if you eat in the restaurant, you can’t get the cichetti, but my squid ink pasta was sublime and made the sacrifice well worth it.
Caffe del Doge: Our morning ritual was to stop here for a good cup of coffee before heading out. Drinking our macchiatos and cafe au laits standing up and quickly was a big change for me. I usually like to drink my coffee all morning long. But when in Rome (or Venice)…
Paradiso Perduto: We were starving for lunch by the time we arrived at Paradiso Perduto around 3 pm (in our typical vacation mode of eating at odd hours) and they were having a private event, so we sat outside along the canal with a big fat platter of whatever they wanted to prepare (octopus, salmon, squid, shrimp, sardines, some veggies) and a bottle of wine. Heaven.
Gelateria Grom: With locations all over Italy, and also internationally, it’s hard to recommend a franchise when you’re in as charming a city as Venice. But if you’re looking for gelato (and who isn’t in Italy?), Grom’s a good bet.
Must-eats: squid ink pasta, octopus, cichetti, gelato