Venice was my last stop in Italy for all practical purpose. I will be going to Gorizia but that is just to walk to Slovenia. Current day Venice is in two parts, the mainland urban city and the island city. Island city is the Venice we all intend to visit, hence when you take a train or book a hostel make sure your station is Venezia St. Lucia and not Mestre.
An archipelago of 118 islands separated by lagoon and connected by bridges has no definite history of its origin. Mostly it is agreed that it started as a settlement of refugees from nearby Roman cities. It has been known as ‘Queen of Adriatic’ and always had close association with Eastern Roman Empire. During middle ages and renaissance period Republic of Venice came out as a major maritime power.
Venice is not a day trip place and neither a solo backpacking destination, unless you are very sure of hitting off with someone in there. When in Venice do not rush from one monument to another, one tourist spot to another on the map. Spend a few laid back days; sit by lagoon in sun and sip vine, Take a gondola and float through the city, Get on to water bus and hop islands and roam about the narrow streets of the city aimlessly. This is a city to find your own spot! I ended up spending a lot of time near San Marco plaza and hopping island with water buses. After all The New York Times doesn’t call it “undoubtedly the most beautiful city built by man” for nothing.
To the budget travelers Venice can be a little expensive. If you are not in to island hopping, then book a hostel on St. Lucia side. Water bus or ferries are the only mode of transport between islands. One way ticket cost €7 and a 24 our pass is for €20. I stayed at Ostella Venezia by Generator of Gudecca Island, and the only way to get there is water bus. Also keep in mind water buses are pretty slow and not very frequent – so if you do not want to spend time travelling, stay on main island. But, also to note that these ferries run around the clock. One can also stay in Mestre, from where both buses and trains run to St. Lucia at a very good frequency.
10:35 PM – INI 774 Roma Termini (Italy) to Venezia St. Lucia (Italy) at 5:20 AM
Ostella Venezia by Generator
87, Via Zettele