Posts tagged “Italy

Dorsoduro, Venice

Posted on August 24, 2013

Dorsoduro. Photo courtesy of Ramón Cutanda via Flickr. In the high season, Venice’s population doubles and the log jam on the main thoroughfares becomes almost unbearable, as thousands of tourists clog the alleyways between the Rialto Bridge and Piazza San Marco. A short walk over the Ponte dell’Accademia crossing the Grand Canal, however, provides an escape route into one of the most enduring and increasingly fashionable districts of La Serenissima, Dorsoduro. Somewhat euphemistically translated as ‘high ridge’, it juts out from San Polo and lies to the South of San Marco with its tip almost opposite the Doge’s Palace. It also embraces two islands across the canal to the south, Giudecca and the less fashionable, Sacca Fisola. Cantine del Vino gia Schiavi. Photo courtesy of timsackton via Flickr.…

Island of Giudecca, Venice, Italy

Posted on August 24, 2013

Isola della Giudecca. Photo courtesy of Necrothesp via wikimedia. If you’re a backpacker and want to savour some of the most iconic views in Venice, then there’s no better place to stay then the Ostello Venezia on the Island of Giudecca, For the price of a small meal at the nearby luxury hotels you get the same magnificent views over the canal to the Doges’ Palace, the Campanile towering over St. Mark’s Square and the cathedral of La Salute guarding the entrance to the Grand Canal. If, however, you are feeling very flush and really want to have a momentary bit of self-indulgence, then you can sample the world famous Hotel Caprice with its Olympic-sized swimming pool and hobnob with De Niro, Angelina Jolie et al…

A Night at the Opera, Verona

Posted on June 21, 2012

Verona is famous for its music and especially its opera, which takes place in the former Roman amphitheater, L’Arena, next to the Piazza Bra in the center of this beautiful city. A venue more renowned for gladiatorial combat and games (ludi), it has been transformed into one of the wonders of the world, with over 50 performances every season running from June to September. The 2012 season includes Don Giovanni, Aida, Carmen, Romeo and Juliette, Turandot and Tosca.  L’Arena in Verona, Italy Here are some tips that will help you in preparation for the performance you might attend. Read about more things to do in Italy Arriving to the opera performance The sheer vastness of the setting in the huge circular amphitheater packed with 14,000 spectators, all sitting…

Venice, Walking Tour and Gondola Ride

Posted on February 1, 2012

Escape into the myriad of alleyways in San Marco, explore hidden Venice and glide effortlessly on a gondola down the Grand Canal. Learn the secrets of the construction of this jewel of the Adriatic and the race against time to preserve it and all its splendid magnificence. The Venice Walking Tour and Gondola Ride starts near St Mark’s Square and pauses in front of the Hotel Bauer, famous for the filming of Don’t Look Now starring Donald Sutherland and Julie Christie. You follow a narrow alleyway, the crowds disappear and Venice’s famous opera house, La Fenice suddenly emerges. The birthplace of Verdi’s La Traviata, it was destroyed in an arson attack in 1996, but completely re-built using the exact original plans. Hence its name meaning The Phoenix. In the Campo…

Venice in a Day

Posted on January 31, 2012

If you’ve only got a day to see this jewel of the Adriatic, there are a few ground rules that you need to obey. Firstly, be selective in what you want to see. Don’t try to cover everything. Venice is such a treasure trove that it would be impossible to do it justice in just one day. Secondly, set off early and get to the principal sites before the huge crowds descend on them and make life unbearable. Thirdly, don’t try and walk everywhere. It will be exhausting, especially in August when the temperatures are at their highest. Invest in a day pass on the vaporetti (water buses) and use the traghetti (gondola ferries) whenever possible–they cost only 50 cents. Lastly, combine visits to key sites…