European Winter: Northern Italy — Milan, Verona & Venice

Wednesday 28th November— Tuesday 4th December, 2018

After a fun time in the Alps, it was off to Italy for two weeks! We started our time in Milan, getting use to the Italian vibes and ways of doing things. The street we stayed on was laced with bars, cafes and gelato — stop well chosen!

We of course, being Meg & Clive, had to source the oh so loved coffee! I haven’t experienced coffee drinking this way before — it is common for locals to lean at the bar to shot back their espresso before they start the day, and it only costs 1 Euro! It is said that many tourists get stuck in the trap of sitting down to drink their coffee and as a result pay double or triple the standing amount. Personally, it was a great way to shot back a coffee before we started our tourist escapades, and we saved a lot of money compared to our overly priced watered down coffees from Switzerland!

We went onto the Duomo di Milano was an incredible sight! Built over 600 years, but looks like they all worked together with so much unity, although there were multiple architectural styles. After our city centre exploring, Clive dragged me out to visit the Milan Football grounds, and we wandered back through some really nice urban areas of the city. Some parts of Milan looks built up and old like the city, but some spots around the city were modern and embracing urban living. We found two districts that housed beautiful shopping precincts and next to them were urban gardens which served multiple purposes: vegetable garden, botanical gardens, dog parks etc. surround the park were apartment buildings thriving in greenery as well! Something different and super progressive for the urban living situation!

The spritz and snacks!

After our riposo (trusty ol’ afternoon nap) we headed back out into the city, this time visiting the canals for an Apreitivo — a pre dinner drink, where snacks are usually complimentary with the drinks! We stopped at a lovely place on the canals for our Aprevitio — 14 Euros for two spritz and the best pre-dinner snacks ever! Italians seem to have a late dinner as well so the Apretivio was a good way to keep us going!

The next day, we headed onto Venice, but not before detouring through Verona whilst we were at it! The home of Romeo and Juliet. We spent a night here to experience it all, starting with a wonderful walk up the hill to Castel San Pietro to see Verona in the night. The streets in Verona were gorgeous and picturesque, a perfect place to enjoy another Apretivio! We walked past Juliet’s House (it was busy, it was a window ledge, cool) and then visited the Arena di Verona, which opened 30AD and is still in use today. It was incredible to see it and to only imagine a performance in the arena. For lunch we found a small pizzeria that had the BEST slice of pizza that I have ever eaten, then it was onto Venice!

The outside of the Arena di Verona.

Once arriving to Venice and after navigating our way across the canals and through the streets to our hotel (literally 20metres from Piazza San Marco!). For dinner that night we treated ourselves to some amazing pasta at a cute restaurant and enjoyed a mild night in Venice. The next day we spent our time exploring Piazza San Marco, the cathedral and the tower in the square. We spent a lot of our day purely enjoying getting lost through the narrow streets, coming across gorgeous buildings, shops and canals and watching the day go by. It was definitely not as busy being the winter, but the weather was mild and enjoyable and being able to enjoy the streets without thousands of people was ideal. After more wandering, a ride on the Gondola (those cute boats that go through the canals) and more eating pasta we began to make our way to southern Italy for more great adventures!

Venice, Italy.

The morning we left Venice, Piazza San Marco was flooded to the point that we couldn’t walk across the square. If that isn’t reason enough to get your boots moving to visit this place, I don’t know what is!

Next Stop: Rome & Pompeii.

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