So, we broke up our 7 – whyyy?! – hour bus ride from the French Riviera to Venice with a stop at a designer outlet mall in a place called Serraville. The outlet mall is like an outdoor complex, and it had all the major name brands – Prada, Gucci, Versace, etc – and some good deals I suppose, though they were all still a little rich for my blood. I’m not paying 3000 euros for a purse, no matter how good the “deal!” I did however get a wallet at Versace for 50 euros, which I though was pretty fair 🙂
Then we continued on to our campsite in Venice, which wasn’t as pretty a drive as the first part was – that was all hills and cool little villages and cities while the last leg was just sort of fields and boring. The campsite was alright at first – the WiFi was decent if you stood right beside reception and the food was great, but it got significantly worse with the millions of mosquitoes and worse, bed bugs. My bed was OK, but one of my roommates found them in her bed so we gave her our sleeping bags as a mattress and used our towels as sheets. We spent the first night just at the campsite, so I used the WiFi to upload pics and listened to a Venice cover band play classic American rock and roll, which was actually really good 🙂
Then the next morning we got on the ferry to actually go into Venice, which was a short enough ride. Venice itself was really cool – all the narrow little alleys and streets and all the bridges over the canals are a really neat vibe.
And then had a walking tour with a very funny Venetian guide learning about the city. Then we had some amazing pizza for lunch, and got to see a great glass blowing demonstration where the master made a glass horse and vase right in front of our eyes!
After that we had some free time, so I bought murano glass necklaces, earnings and cufflinks for basically everyone I know, so I hope they all like that as souvenirs! 😉 I also went into the Basilica, which had a lovely painted ceiling:
And then I went up the belltower for a great view of the city 🙂
Then there was time for a little gelato 😉
And then we met up as group again for a gondola ride, which was really relaxing 🙂
The gondola’s are really a must if you visit Venice, and I definitely recommend them, even if you aren’t feeling all that romantic at the moment! After that we took the ferry back to our campsite, and the group had a masque party at the campsite, which was interrupted pretty tidly by a thunder storm. It did make for some nice cool weather for sleep though, which I took advantage of, and got a good night sleep.
Now we’re on the way to Florence, with a stop in Piza first, where we’re all trying to get the best Tower selfie 😉