We kept joking that our trip to Europe was a buffet vacation; we had never been to Europe before and we wanted to sample a lot of places to see where to visit next time around. The problem with that mentality is that the more you travel, the more you want to see. The great news is we have a life time, right? When we planned our trip to Europe, we planned on taking a short stop in Venice and in Florence on the way to Rome. I’m really happy we did because Venice, Italy is absolutely unreal and unique in the best way. Since we weren’t in Venice very long enough to recommend places, I’m going to tell you what we will do next time, what I loved, and what I didn’t. These are my reflections on 24 hours in Venice, Italy.
WHAT WE WILL DO NEXT TIME
Our time was very limited to see things since we arrived in the early evening and left the next morning. We were lucky because there was enough time to see the outside of buildings, but we didn’t get to go inside!
- The Island of Burano
We really wanted to see some of the islands about Venice, but no time! The ferries from Venice to the other islands take quite a bit of time and they end up being half-day trips. That being said, the colorful buildings I have seen in pictures look so beautiful. One of the ladies that was next to us in breakfast told us that they don’t enjoy visiting because it is such a tourist trap and they try to sell so many glass knock offs, but I highly doubt we’d buy glass to carry around in our backpacks + I just thought it seemed very pretty!
- Santa Maria Gloriosa dei Frari
The inside pictures I’ve seen of this Gothic-style church are absolutely insane. I know that the outside of the church was massive and I love that this church was built in the 1300s, so old!
- Palazzo Contarini del Bovolo
The architecture and staircases on this building is amazing!
- Gallerie dell’Accademia
This is a huge art gallery full of Italian works of art; the sign is owned by the Italian ministry of culture and heritage.
- Piazza San Marco
We saw the outside of this beautiful 12th century building. I can’t wait to see the inside!
- Doge’s palace
This is one of the main landmarks of the city and the outside looks amazing. In the 10th century, this palace was partially burned down and then it was rebuilt in the 1100s.
I’m sure there are many other places we would love to see as well. Italy is full of history, beauty, and art; you really can’t go wrong.
WHAT I LOVED
Um, this city is gorgeous. The architecture! The colored buildings! The windows with charming window boxes! There were a few times that Devin had to pull my arm because I was walking around with my mouth gaping open.
We received the advice to wake up early and watch all of the mail delivered from boats down the canal and see all of the shops become stocked. I’m so glad someone suggested this because it was amazing to see how a city without cars operated and the boats were so interesting to me. Venice is really a city that I could sit and take in all of my environment the whole day because having a boat-oriented culture is so different than our commuting one.
Venice is a also great place to affordably buy trinkets or souvenirs. We were backpacking so this wasn’t of great interest to us, but I regret not buying a leather purse that was only about $20 because I thought I would find another one in another city- nope! We spent a lot of time looking at Venetian masks, little glass animals, and we ended up bringing home a cute Christmas ornament.
Also, we need to talk about how glamorous Italian women still look in 100 degree weather?! I was sweaty, nasty mess and I saw so many women waltzing around in stilettos with these beautiful tomato red dresses.
WHAT I DIDN’T LOVE
We had a hard time finding good food, but the gelato never disappointed. I’m not a picky eater, but I joked that some of the food we bought tasted microwaved. We ended up finding out that Venice has a ban on wood burning oven because of their opera house fire and they prohibit certain ovens because of the sheer weight of them; our food was likely microwaved because of this (so, I wasn’t wrong on how it tasted).
However, my friend Alex did a food tour in Venice which I think is probably a really good investment after hearing about her food experience. Pizza isn’t native to northern Italy either, but due to tourist demands they had to start making it. I do believe Venice might be a place you need to research food before eating. We learned our lesson and will try different foods next time.
WHERE WE STAYED
- Location: Calle Cendon, 533, 30121 Venezia VE, Italy
- Price: We booked our hotel on expedia.com for $85 (at our time of visiting)
- The hotel was on a little side street and was build in the 15th century! The air conditioning was excellent which was VERY needed. The room was clean, the bathroom was very beautiful and recently renovated. I loved all of the paintings in the hotel and we had fun fitting into the little elevator that barely fit us both. The breakfast included a lot of different types of breads, cheese, and meats which were delicious. However, something we experienced in every hotel we stayed in in Italy was that we were told there would be internet, but it worked so poorly that we could not load webpages. Devin ended up roaming in the middle of the night to find internet; he ended up at Burger King to purchase our train tickets for the next day and contact our friend we were meeting in Rome.
I loved being able to share my reflections on 24 hours in Venice, Italy because looking through all of the photos helped me remember what a beautiful city this truly is. Our time in Venice, Italy was lovely, but 24 hours was too short and we’d love to go back. When we do, we plan on spending 2-3 days here after some restaurant research.