Any given Friday afternoon in the summer, Piazza di San Marco in Venezia, Italia is guaranteed to be filled with thousands of tourists snapping thousands of photographs per second.
And this was exactly the case when I visited it on Friday...well, sort of.
The day began at 6:00 am when we arrived at Firenze S.M. Novella train station to purchase our tickets for the day. The morning was smooth, until we arrived in Bologna at 8:10 to catch the 8:20 train to Venezia. To our surprise, we completely forgot to purchase the second tickets and had to sprint all around the Bologna train station to buy the tickets. Running down the escalators, frantically purchasing the train tickets, finding our platform number, running back up the escalators. We jumped on the train at 8:18, then remembered we forgot to validate our tickets!! Validating is extremely important because if you do not validate your ticket it is considered invalid (obviously) and you are fined hundreds of euros. We jumped off the train and tried to ask a maintenance worker where the validators were...of course he didn't understand any english and of course they were down the stairs. We all booked it down the stairs, to the validating machine, and back up in the stairs and jumped on the train with literally seconds to spare. Thankfully, that was the only train mishap that happened the entire journey!
We arrived in Venezia by 10:30 and took the bus to our camp site. Yes, we went camping in Venezia. We stayed at Camping Rialto. It was actually really nice and efficient and only 11 euros a night! We had two cabins, two in each cabin because it was cheaper than a quad cabin. The campsite was a ten minute bus ride to the center of Venezia.
After check in, we headed out to the canals, and ate lunch there. Proceeding lunch, we explored Venezia and "got lost" because that's what you're suppose to do there, right? Right.
Well eventually we made our way to Piazza di San Marco that was filled with thousands of tourists and we walked around the square. We soon decided there was just too many people around to enjoy the area we went to find a restaurant for an early dinner.
This time, we actually got lost. We ended up on the other side of the island where nobody speaks english. So we just followed the locals to see where it would lead too. On the way back, we found a cute little restaurant for dinner that was right on the canals and we could watch the boats go by. During dinner, it began to pour rain.
We decided we should probably try to find our way back. On the way we walked into a mask factory where there were hundreds of masks dangling from the walls and ceilings. Of course we took photos with them!
After the shop, we found ourselves in Piazza di San Marco where it was completely empty. All of the tourists were under any covers that they could find as the rain poured down. The only logical thing to do: go stand in the middle of the Piazza as the rain came down.
Finally, we made our way back to the campground and enjoyed a nice night of talking and playing games.
In the morning we were up bright and early, but not as early as the day before, and in Venice by 9:30. It was great. We had breakfast and did some shopping! I got these beautiful bead braclets that were hand made for 6 euro!!
After Venice for a few hours, we hopped on a train and headed to Verona. Verona was so beautiful. We only really had time to see Juliet's house before we headed back to Florence. But it was absolutely stunning. Possibly one of the most romantic places I have ever been. Juliet's house was packed with tourists (just like us) eager to take a picture on her balcony and explore he home, which was pretty beautiful. We took a picture holding Juliet's boob on the statue outside of the house...everyone else was doing it so it seemed like it was important and we wrote our names on the wall to Juliet because .... why not?!
Even though we were in Verona for only a short amount of time I really enjoyed it!
We took the train back around 6 because of the Saturday 2 for 1 deal with TrenItalia (it's a pretty sweet deal).
The weekend quickly came to a close with watching two movies and going out to the Chinese restaurant (it is REALLY good) on Saturday night and I basically slept the day away until dinner on Sunday and then went back to bed.
Overall the weekend was perfect and I really enjoyed camping, getting lost in Venice in the rain, and looking out from Juliet's balcony.