Today it is, I, Elisabeth who will share with you my honeymoon trip to the beautiful city of Venice, since Valentine’s day is only around the corner and what’s better than a journey to this romantic city! Well, to be honest at first it was hard for me to bring back all the memories from Venice since we visited her seven years ago yet, since then so much has changed in our lives! Seven years later we now have two boys, one who will turn six in March and the younger one who is only three. So I am sure that everyone can understand what a change that is, in someone’s life. A pleasant one yet, a very big one!
We had just gotten married and we were crazy in love with each other (don’t get me wrong we still are but in a different way) so we could not wait until our honeymoon started. We wanted to finally relax after all the running that went on due to the wedding preparations and most of all we wanted to be alone and far away from everyone! Our honeymoon started off with Lake Como where we stayed for a week and it ended in Venice with a few stops on the way. However, today I want to share with you my memories only from Venice. Another time I will write all about Lake Como, another beautiful destination. Why not the other way around? I don’t know. I guess my heart belongs to Venice or else called the “City of Angels” or the “City of Bridges.” A city with over 100 small islands that are separated by canals and connected by over 300 bridges! Can you just picture that for a moment? And to add to this magic, wherever you may look there are beautiful buildings with stunning architecture that simply leaves you breathless! And of course, there are gondolas everywhere with their gondoliers who will often sing along the way as they stroll down the canals making the atmosphere even more romantic! Surrounded by such beauty everywhere, it is not a surprise that part of the city is listed as a World Heritage Site!
On our first day, as we were approaching the center of Venice with a water taxi I could not help notice an oversized cruise ship that was so near to the banks of the city! It was scary to watch but soon this was all well forgotten as we were approached the city and its beauty left us breathless!!! Personally, I was very anxious and could not wait to arrive to our hotel to see what it is like! I had no doubt it would be beautiful, but I could have never imagined the view we would have! It was the beautiful basilica Santa Maria della Salute! So naturally, on our first night we had dinner at the hotel restaurant since I could not get enough of this view! To add on to the magic, there was a live orchestra with a piano that was playing soft music while we were enjoying our dinner and drinking our wine with the moon shining over the basilica Santa Maria della Salute!
The next day we headed to St. Mark’s Square where there are several attractions to see. We decided to see the two most important ones for us: the Doge’s Palace and St. Marks Basilica. St. Marks Basilica has a beautiful Italo-Byzantine architecture thus, it’s truly worth seeing. The Doge’s Palace was the second attraction we toured with great art paintings to see. Of course we also had a tour at the prison cells and the famous Bridge of Sighs. When we finished the tour of the palace it was time to sit and enjoy the lovely weather like so many other tourists did while drinking a refreshment, grabbing something quick to eat and simply enjoy watching people come and go. It is so funny but I still remember that although the square was filled with so many tourists it felt so tranquil and peaceful or perhaps it was just I who felt like that! Nevertheless, I can still remember this tranquility. Anyway, after getting enough rest I could not help myself from wanting to have a gondola ride and so of course we did! It was so beautiful going under all these different small bridges and through the narrow passages of the canal while discovering more secret passages only to take you to the next bridge under! How magical!
Our day finished of course having Bellinis at Harry’s Bar which is so famous! There we met two couples that were Americans and kept talking with each other all the time we were there having a great laugh altogether! They were very friendly and great company and I remember how the wished us all the best for our marriage! They were very surprised as well with my accent since it is American and so I explained to them that I had finished an American School back home in Athens and although I studied in London my accent still remains American. What a great time we had that night! I can’t remember to be honest how many Bellini’s we had but I remember that I just couldn’t stop laughing with my husband!
The following day we had to see the famous Rialto Bridge! The Rialto Bridge is the oldest of the four bridges spanning the Grand Canal in Venice. The ornate bridge is single span and it has two inclined ramps with stairs that lead you to the central portico with shops on both sides, as well as three walkways. Gosh! I still remember how much I loved all this busy traffic that was going on! Needless to say that this is the heart of Venice! There were some many people everywhere! Restaurants, little shops, cafes…all in such elegance and beauty!
We literally spend the whole day there and at night we decided with my husband to have dinner in a restaurant of our choice by luck! We just decided to walk and choose one that looked “pretty” in our eyes! We did not care so much about the food quality. But we did care about the setting and the atmosphere of it! So as we were crossing a bridge my eye caught a restaurant which was literally next to the canal and one could see the gondolas passing by thus making our view unique! And since I love flowers I could not have chosen a restaurant without any. On the rails that existed on the one side of the restaurant there were flower pots hanging with red geraniums that is a typical Mediterranean flower – a flower I myself have at home. So this definitely made me feel like I was home. The night was very pleasant allowing you to sit outside thus enjoying all the beauty while we were drinking our favorite drinks! Can you guess? Bellini cocktails of course!
It was now the third day we were in Venice and it was time to visit the magical baroque basilica di Santa Maria della Salute and of course the Peggy Guggenheim Museum with contemporary art by artists like Picasso, Pollock, Dalli, Kandinsky and many more! I don’t remember much expect that basilica di Santa Maria della Salute was another beautiful building with amazing architecture that left me breathless and as far as the museum is concerned, it was an amazing experience! It was so interesting to see such different kinds and forms of art all gathered in one place! Other than that I remember it was a very hot day and although we are used to hot weather back in my country that day for some reason it felt extremely hot and so my husband and I were drinking constantly lots of water to keep us hydrated! By lunch time we were exhausted yet, so happy to be together and so happy to be in a place that we both loved and enjoyed so much! Love was in the air!!!
The fourth day, as most women would agree with me, was spent doing what women do best! 😉 Shopping, shopping, and once again shopping!!! Needless to say that Venice has beautiful shops and Italians are well known for their great style! So believe me it was very hard to control myself although I had to (for obvious reasons) since everything was truly irresistible! Now because my sister and I share a love for house design ever since we were young girls (our mother knows that best since we always used to re-decorate and rearrange her furniture LOL!), it is not hard to imagine that I would not leave Venice without buying something for our house back in Athens, Greece. So guess what? My husband and I bought a collection of small and beautiful Murano glasses along with small ice cream bowls all in different colors! As a matter of fact, the Murano glasses was something my husband and I had spotted back in the hotel we were staying from day one and that was where we got the idea from! My husband pleasantly surprised me the third morning during breakfast when he turned to me and told me that he really liked those glasses and commented on how fabulous they looked! So he thought that it would be great if we also bought similar ones in order to enjoy back home! It was so much fun choosing the colors! I think we spend over an hour trying to decide! But, I also recall buying from the same store something very precious to me till now. A beautiful tan leather key chain that I use everyday even till now! So you might wonder what is so special about the key chain? Well, to me it is precious because it reminds me every single day of those four beautiful days my husband and I spend in Venice for our honeymoon. A trip that will always stay in my heart and small details like that key chain will only bring out these memories and remind me of our young and carefree love that we so passionately shared for each other.
Dedicated to my husband, the love of my life!
P.S. All imagery is mine.