We only had 2 nights in Venice with one full day. We arrived in Venice by train at about 4 PM and the weather had been threatening rain all day. As we left the train station it struck me as I looked at the lovely canal in front of us…..you just don’t hail yourself a taxi here. We were looking at spending a rainy day in Venice, maybe two so how do we get around and what to do in Venice on a rainy day.
Getting Around Venice
In all my DIY travel plans, I had not thought about getting to our hotel from the train station. I had not taken that into account when choosing our hotel accommodations. I picked a hotel that honestly couldn’t have been further from the train station.
Once we gathered our whits and found some shelter under a tree we started looking at the options. Private water taxi or a water bus. Venice is not known for being an economy destination and private water taxis are very expensive.
Right in front of the train station on the edge of the canal is the water bus station. With a little help from the clerk, we were on our way to our hotel via a water bus. Since our hotel was around the far end of the Grand Canal, we just relaxed and enjoyed the view. What a view it is.
We stayed at a little place very close to Saint Mark’s Square. The Hotel Montecarlo is close to everything and down the tiniest street I have ever seen, but it even had a name. No wider than the hallway in our apartment.
The Montecarlo, a small boutique hotel having just 48 rooms decorated in the Venetian style. All the amenities you need including Wifi, cable tv, A/C which we didn’t need and a hairdryer. They offer a buffet that was included when we booked through Expedia. It was an excellent buffet, so we ate there both mornings.
Our Favorite Dining Spot
We use Yelp all the time when looking for restaurants no matter where we are in the world. We came across Taverna San Lio Restaurant quite by accident. Looking for another restaurant upon locating it, it was packed. Not wanting to wait in the rain we decided to just keep walking and ran into this place. The menu sounded really yummy and there were a lot of people but it wasn’t packed and noisy.
We decided to give it a try and it was amazing. It was so good that we went twice for dinner and we were only there for 2 nights in the first place. Both of us really wanted to go back there for dinner on our second night because it was just that delicious.
For me, it was the best meal I had on our entire trip to Italy. We are from S. California and we enjoy very fresh and light foods but packed with flavor. This was just that good, but with a fabulous Italian flair you want when in Italy.
We ordered two meals to split. They split it in the kitchen for us, so it looked beautiful when it arrived at our table. We had pasta in olive oil, garlic with red pepper flakes. A steak drizzled with a balsamic glaze and a fresh arugula salad. It was divine. Still, think about it today and that was months ago.
Our Rainy Day Agenda
We woke up hopeful, but it was raining on our one and only morning so we decided to take a tour of where Murano hand-blown glass is made. Murano glass has been around for centuries. We took a covered water taxi to Murano Island & toured the premises for about 1.5 hours. They have displayed an enormous collection of exquisite hand blown glass. Every piece, individually sculpted, even the little pieces of a massive chandelier.
After that, we went to the Jewish Ghetto. Had a coffee in a little cafe on the square and then took a tour that embarked from the museum right next door. The history is fascinating, again a very sad story of oppression. I hope man learns from history.
Wandering around the streets of Venice, by this time the rain had been coming pretty good and honestly, we hadn’t prepared for this much rain. While it was only Sept. Italy had record rains, with flooding throughout the country. We had umbrellas, they helped, but we really needed additional rain gear. Temperatures started dropping, soaked and now very cold. Lesson learned, be better prepared for possible rain no matter the time of year you go.
We had planned on visiting the Guggenheim Museum, but at this time we were so wet and cold we had to go back to our room too, dry our clothes and warm up. Drying out our clothing took several of our already limited hours. We had a nice lunch before retreating to our room for an afternoon nap.
Later that evening the rain was still coming down and the chill from earlier had not completely gone away even with dry clothes on. We decided to just accept the unfortunate situation and head back to our new favorite restaurant for a what we knew was going to be a lovely dinner.
A Beautiful Day
Wouldn’t you know it, the day of our departure was beautiful? Gondolas were out, the sun was shining brightly and everything was beginning to dry out (there had been some flooding of Saint Marks Square).
Pulling away from Venice on the train, the mountains in the distance were covered with snow. Oh, well, we did get to see Venice and it was beautiful and unique. Something that must be seen at least for a day while in Italy.