Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Eurotrip, chapter 1: Venice, Italy

Hi lovelies, 

The last time you heard from me, Jason and I had just gotten engaged and were about to head off on a 2 month trip to Europe and China..

..And then I sort of went missing.

I'm sorry. 

I haven't died. I've just been overwhelmed with life.

I'd like all the foodies out there to know that I have been keeping up to date with your blogs during my lunch breaks (while drooling over your great recipes). I started feeling a bit guilty last week about not posting so I thought I'd start by catching you up on our (not so recent) holiday!

I'll try to be more active from now on. 

Love, Lucy

One of the many enchanting alleyways
The first stop on our trip was beautiful Venice, Italy. The first thing that hit me was how colourful this city was. That, and the total lack of cars. Before you call me silly, let me assure you that I was expecting canals and gondolas in Venice but, somehow, it slipped my mind that it would be used for non-tourist applications..

Silly me.

Gondolas (parked?) outside the Hard Rock Cafe
We arrived on a cold, foggy morning which had just begun to drizzle. We had been told that winter was not the best time to tour Europe, but the fog just made the city look more enchanting and we found that we didn't mind the rain at all. It felt like we were in a fairy tale.

Our hotel
It took us a little while to find our accommodation  which is situated in Cannareigio, as we weren't prepared for a city without many street signs. Luckily, we didn't take too many wrong turns and, eventually, we were welcomed in to the warmth of our hotel.

Squid Ink Pasta (not pictured: lasagna)
For lunch, we found a cute little restaurant nearby where we had Squid Ink Pasta and Lasagna. The squid ink gave the pasta a very light salty flavour which was quite pleasant but, I have to be honest, I was expecting a little more. Unfortunately, we didn't rate the lasagna very highly.

Rialto Bridge
But what kind of people would we be if we let something like an uneventful meal ruin our time in VENICE??

St Mark's Basilica
Although the city seems small on a map, our little feet got quite tired after walking on cobbles for a couple of days. We made full use of our vaporetto (water bus) passes and were able to get a great view of the city from the canals. The locals were super friendly and there were even people offering free hugs (although, I have to admit, I thought they were going to rob me at first!).

Free hugs in San Marco
Whilst wandering through San Marco, we decided to ditch the map and do a little exploring of our own. This led us down a few random alleyways and we ended up a little lost..

Spaghetti mare e monti

Instead of panicking, we settled ourselves down in a nearby restaurant (they're never too far) for dinner. We were able to share a set menu and, fortunately, this meal was a great improvement compared to the meal we had earlier in the day. It definitely pays to wander off the main tourist paths for food! Whether or not it was intentional..

Steak and chips (sorry, I forgot to get the name on the menu)
The spaghetti was delicious, with clean seafood flavours from the clams and mussels on a tomato base. Our second course of steak, chips and spinach was also well cooked and followed with a delicious tiramisu.

Staff at Harry's Bar dressed nicer than us
One of the places near the top of my Venice list was Harry's Bar, the home of the Bellini -a favourite drink of mine. They are also famous for carpaccio and the dry martini. One of the most fancy places I've ever been to, the staff were meticulously dressed in sharp white suits and made us feel quite under dressed for such a fancy place.

Peach Bellinis from Harry's Bar
The menu here is incredibly pricey but their reputation means they can pretty much charge whatever they want. Our Bellinis were 16.50 each and came to us with a bowl of olives and a history of the bar and its owner.

This was easily the most expensive thing we spend our money on in Europe, but I think it was worth it. Jason and I had never enjoyed olives more than we did that day.

Every morning looked like this
We absolutely loved our time in this city and found that we didn't really mind being here in winter. The misty mornings made our surroundings seem magical and it was nice not being in large crowds.

Hope you enjoyed a snippet of our Venice photos and I look forward to showing you the rest of our trip.

Ciao for now :)

Next stop: Berlin, Germany


  1. a romantic and a wonderful place to visit

  2. What a lovely holiday! And my friends said the same thing about Harry's Bar too! :D

  3. I'm so glad to hear you had such an awesome trip!! So far Venice looks beautiful!

  4. I guess the restaurants along the tourist strip don't have to serve good food to survive, due to the never-ending stream of tourists, so it's no surprise they are not particularly good. Glad to hear you found a nice place in the end. What I remember most about Venice is when it suddenly poured with rain. All the people disappeared from the al fresco dining tables, and umbrella sellers popped up from nowhere, charging 5 Euro for ponchos and umbrellas that were probably from the $2 store, but which you kind of had to buy. The place looked amazing with all the different coloured umbrellas that people had, the light glistening off the pavement.