27.09.2014 - 28.09.2014
After a 5-hour bus ride, we arrived in Milan where we had a few hours before departing to Venice. Since this was my first time in this city, Jens found a great walking tour that that allowed us to see the city in the short amount of time we had there. I was surprised to learn that Milan doesn't feel like your typical Italian city... it definitely has more similarities to Central European cities, so you can't really compare it to Florence, Rome, etc. The castle is quite impressive... and so is the shopping! Jens had to remind me several times that my backpack only holds so much! ;-) We were also lucky enough to stumble upon a Gelato Festival, where we got our fill of gelato to last us for a while!
We took a 2-hour train ride to Venice, and upon arriving that evening, we were absolutely pooped! Having had woken up at 5:45am that morning and walking 5km in the humid heat of Milan, we were so incredibly tired that we couldn't even appreciate the beautiful night views of Venice. It took us a 45 min Vaporetto ride and then another 10 min walk to get to our Airbnb, where we decided to go to bed and start fresh the next morning. This was an exhausting first day of our trip, but what did we expect when packing in so much.
Venice is everything we expected it to be... so beautiful, so picturesque, and yet over-crowded and over-priced! Thankfully, Jens did all the research, so we knew which cafes and Osterias offered good, reasonably-priced food and drinks! When you are a backpacker on a budget, it's good to know these things! ;-) Truly though, Venice is really incredible!! We, of course, had to see/do the main sites... San Marco Square, a gratuitous gondola ride and the Rialto Bridge. But what we really loved was strolling through the narrow passageways, getting lost on purpose, admiring the beautiful, old architecture, and sitting in a piazza enjoying a good Aperol Spritz! ;-)