I dreamed of sailing on the lagoon
Burano, a small island on the lagoon, is a fond memory. The sun was shining and it was a hot day, which made the short vaporetto ride from Venice very pleasant. We stood outside and watched Burano appear. That's what I love about boats, the anticipation building on arriving from the water, and the melancholy of places disappearing in the mist.
For a few minutes after disembarking, we were crowded into a mini calle, no bigger than a corridor. Suddenly, the calle opens onto a marvelous canal, lined with the most vivid colours of the rainbow! Keep walking, very soon the crowds have stayed behind on the campo, to shop or eat or just linger.
I spent hours walking, going into such small streets that it was embarrassing -- often, you end up in a maze, an impasse, in the middle of a scene from a resident's family life.
View from St.Marco's church
Its great to go up to the tower of St.Marco's church, don't worry, you don't need to climb the stairs, there is an elevator going there! :-) The view from the top is astonishing, really pays off to spend few euros!
You cannot, and likely won't,...
You cannot, and likely won't, miss San Marco Square. It is surrounded by spectacular antique structures taken up with cafes, live orchestras, street painters, and millions of pidgeons and tourists. It is a good place to start and end your wanders - perhaps do not plan to dine here as prices are up there! It's always a good idea to go off the beaten tourist track for purchases of any kind! I have a great memory of being led in a tango through the pidgeons of Piazza San Marco!
This is our friendly Godolier. He doesn't speak English, I wonder if any of them do. But he is such an entertainer. He sings bilssfully (but not the kind you get on your stereo) & to our horror, at one point, he was jumping up and down at the back of the Gondola. But what a ride it was.
We were on a packaged tour, don't know exactly how much it would cost if you approached them directly. I read somewhere it's more than 100 euro?
Carnival days and nights
There are so many important events in Venice during the whole year, but the Carnival is probably the most famous one. It is the time of the year when locals shows the other side of their characters, I'd say, the one when indigenous arrogancy is substituted by the almost childish mirth and anxiety. It is the best time of the year, besides Regatta Storica, when one should visit the town. During the days of the carnival, almost everything is allowed and the visitors shouldn't be surprised with some pleacsant and maybe unpleasant surprises.