Sunday, 26 June 2016

Looking Over Venice

Look at that crazy mane of hair. Once again, unrealistic expectations resulting from *that scene* in Pocahontus have not been met. Sad times.

Damn you Pocahontus and your luscious locks.

Anyway, back to the subject.

I always think that one of the best ways to view a city is from above. Climb up the tallest tower and watch the world pass by below you. It's quite a humbling feeling, reminding yourself that you're just one small person in one big city.
First up was arguably the most famous, and most touristy, bell tower in Venice: Saint Mark's Campanile. Being in the busiest area of the city, expect long queues. We were pretty lucky that, at around midday on a sunny week day, the queue was only around 25 minutes.

The views at the top are worth the wait though.
Terracotta orange contrasting with the calm sea blue. It's strange knowing that somewhere amongst that bundle of orange is a huge maze of canals. You'd be forgiven for almost forgetting that you're in Venice.
That is, if it weren't for the multiple towering cathedrals, churches and bell towers that protrude from the skyline.
My personal favourite view from the Campanile: the bustling square by Doge's Palace, the gondolas bobbing up and down in the harbour, the boats buzzing by on the lagoon, all being quietly watched over by San Giorgio Maggiore. 
Spot all the tiny surrounding islands sitting in the horizon, and bonus points if you can name them all!
Entry into Saint Mark's Campanile is only 8 euros, perhaps a bit expensive in comparison to the smaller bell towers in Venice, but you can spend as long as you like up there and you'll be out of the crowds without missing the action! Plus, if you're worried about having to climb all the way to the top, you'll be happy to hear there are no stairs, just a lift. All these views without having to break a sweat? 8 euros well spent, in my opinion!

Or for an alternative view of Venice, hop over to the island of San Giorgio Maggiore and up the San Giorgio Maggiore Campanile. Here, you have to walk through the church to access the Campanile, allowing you to marvel at the beautiful architecture and paintings inside free of charge (and with no strict rules, although I did put on my ever-so-fashionable rain mac in an attempt to cover up out of respect). The Campanile itself is a lot smaller and quieter than Saint Mark's, but the scenery's just as nice.
It's a little bit breezy up there though!
Even from the other side, there's no missing Saint Mark's and Doge's Palace perched on the edge of the lagoon.
If you're looking for a cheaper, more peaceful, alternative to Saint Mark's Campanile, then San Giorgio Maggiore's Campanile is only 6 euros (if you're under 25 and / or a student, you can get in for 4 euros). And, as with Saint Mark's, you don't have to hike up a load of stairs. 

Which was a relief considering the amount of walking we had already done!
Love, Beth xxx

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