Monday, May 18, 2020

Footloose in Italy: A Visit to Venice

Blue boat, Venice

It was with a twinge of regret that we boarded a train, actually a series of trains, that took us northeast from the Cinque Terra to the other side of Italy and the unique city of Venice, which consists of several islands wrapped around the Grand Canal, two and a half miles from the mainland and intersected by nearly 180 smaller canals. 

A vaporetto

A vaporetto, one of the city's water buses, took us to a landing near where we planned to stay and by some miracle we found our hotel, down one of Venice's narrow alleys.

Hotel (not the Ritz)

We had a reasonably nice room on the third floor of our hotel, which was small, European in style, and not expensive by European standards. But the bed! The bed was the hardest bed we have ever slept on. Think sleeping on a pool table. Nonetheless, we did enough walking in Venice to ensure that we slept well both nights we were there. Fortunately, the hotel was near St. Mark's Square, otherwise we might never have found it again after stepping out for supper. 

St. Mark's Square

 Venice surely must have one of the most confusing and frustrating layouts of any city on earth. Yet, its charm covers a multitude of sins. Getting lost isn't quite so bad when every turn, even a wrong turn, reveals scenes of beauty.

One of the many lovely scenes to be
found along Venice's nearly 180 small canals.

While I'm sounding off, let me mention the biggest disappointment of the trip. Believe it or not, it was the food. We love Italian food, and were looking forward to culinary adventures in the land where it all began. But Italian food in Italy didn't taste like the Italian food we had eaten in America, and we quickly realized that we much preferred the Americanized version. So much for that illusion.

Art students in St. Mark's Square

Louise and friends in St. Mark's Square

"No, move it just a bit to the left."

It rained on and off the whole time we were in Venice, but as usual, we made the best of it. Fortunately, the rain let up long enough for us to take a very enjoyable gondola ride. We would love to go back someday and spend a few days in Venice in the sunshine.

Getting the gondolas ready for the day's business.

Louise and David in Venice.
(Photo by our gondolier.)
(Photographs copyright David B. Jenkins and Louise D. Jenkins, 2020)

Soli Deo Gloria
For the glory of God alone.


  1. Beautiful and interesting photographs. I would like to visit Venice someday, but I'm afraid of the tourist crowds. It doesn't look that bad in your photographs, except for the square. Did you look for alleys and canals that tourists had no interest in?

  2. Thanks very much, Marcus. We were in Venice the first week of October, which I think is a very good time to go. There will always be some tourists. We didn't make any effort to avoid them. If you get out early in the morning you will see fewer of them.