Thursday, July 10, 2014

Our trip to Italy - Part 1

 Two of my very dear friends were planning their wedding and scheduled to get married back to back weekends in June. We were ecstatic to be part of their special day and happy that we would have some time off.
Our vacation of the year spent with family, best friends, lots of party (my birthday was the same day as the second wedding we went to) but also some relaxation - 4 days Italy. 
Since neither of us ever been to Italy, we didn't think long about the destination. We wanted to get an overview of Italia's north. With the help of my dad we quickly came up with a nice tour.  
I get easily bored and didn't want to be in one location the whole time, so we decided on a road trip.
From Frankfurt we flew to Milan on Sunday afternoon and rented a little Lancia.
Driving around was at first a bit scary with all the Vespa's on the road, but I quickly got adjusted. Since Brian hasn't driven a manual stick ever in years, I decided on being Ms. Daisy for our trip. 
After checking into our little B&B (Hotel Bicocca die Caroni) in the city center, which was very easy and sparsely furnished, but workable
Brian learned how to  use a *Rolladen* for the first time.
After some giggles we went outside to explore the neighborhood.
 We had authentic Italian Pizza at a small hole in the wall restaurant and enjoyed the evening. Walking around we passed a transvestite prostitute and some guys smoking pot and decided that we might not be in the best neighborhood after all. We went back to our home for the night and were hoping to watch the US play in the World Cup. Unfortunately our TV didn't work, but at least with the free WiFi we got updates on our phones and stayed up till almost 3am.  
Early the next morning we drove three hours to Venice.
We took the ferry to Lido, a little island right behind Venice.
 First selfie on the ferry.
The view from the ferry was already amazing and we couldn't wait to explore the city.
 First though we had to drive over several canals to our next B&B for the night which was this very nice gem - Villa Albertina.


 We parked, checked in and walked over the canals back to the water taxi.

We hopped onto the water taxi and after 20minutes we were at our final destination to get off.
The Rialto Bridge.
Walking over the bridge to a little side restaurant we had the second meal since landed in Italy. It was time for some Pasta.
Doors just right for me.
We walked narrow side streets and enjoyed the old architecture.

A gondola ride couldn't be missed.
I really enjoyed the 45 minute tour, taking selfies,

and lots of pictures of old houses and bridges.
After that we did some more walking, eating gelato and goofing around.

Brian found an entrance to a little hidden boat dock.

Loving on all the old signs, wooden doors and chipped paint on our way.

We stopped at Piazza San Marco where I tried to have Brian pose like a statue. Big fail.  

Isn't this beautiful?

While I took pictures of the Basilica, Brian was more interested in *playing* with the pigeons.

People hang locks on bridges for their loved ones.


After several hours on our feet and two gelato later, we decided on taking the water taxi back to Lido, took a little nap and went out to another Italian restaurant on the side of the road to have dinner.
Walking back on the beach to our B&B we ended the night.
After breakfast the next morning we packed up the car, but left it parked and went to the beach for a couple hours.
Sitting on the pier watching the waves and little crabs.
Last selfie in Lido before we took our car and went onto the ferry back to Venice.  

 And all the time GERMANY is still on our minds, with the beautiful memories of the time spent with my family, the past wedding, the anticipation of the next one, my birthday and more family and friends that we will see.
...and of course the Soccer World Cup. :)


 Stay tuned for part 2 of our trip to Italy.