We awoke on Monday morning for our last day in Venice. We had to check out of our hostel by 10am but our flight didn’t leave for another 12 hours so it was lucky we could store our luggage there until the evening.
After breakfast, we made our way into the rain. We had been warned it could rain all weekend but we’d had sun so far so couldn’t really complain- although obviously we did. Venice had a different atmosphere. Whether it was because of the rain or the fact that the bank holiday weekend was coming to an end and so every one was leaving, Venice was calmer and quiet. We had been planning to head to the island of Murano but the weather didn’t make the idea appealing so instead we decided to find a gallery. I had heard positive reviews about the Accademia Gallery so we decided to head there first. After standing in a queue that didn’t seem to be moving and realising the concession ticket price was €12.00, we tried somewhere else.
On our way to Ca’ D’oro yesterday, we had passed an interesting looking gallery (the Ca’ D’oro Museum) so we decided to try there and happily found student tickets for €3.00. There were a couple of floors, with the first reminding both of us of the Bodes Museum in Berlin, with lots of religious art and small sculptures. The next floor had a variety of art including paintings and frescoes. It was good and I did enjoy it but I didn’t love it.
Once we’d finished exploring the museum, it was definitely time for food. Both my friend and our tour guide yesterday had recommended Trattoria Ca’ Doro alla Vedova and their amazing meatballs. It had been closed on Easter Sunday, so you can imagine my joy when I saw it was open on our last day. Judging on the difficulty just getting through the door, we were certain we were in the right place. We had the option of getting a meal at a table or cicchetti at the bar and we decided on the latter. It was a little awkward, hovering as people came in but the meatballs made it worth it- they lived up to their reputation. We also treated ourselves to a plate of salmon and some umbro (local wine) and our bill totalled €13.00 which wasn’t too bad.
When we emerged, the rain seemed to have subsided so we decided to go to Murano. The island is famous for its glass making but I have been to a glass factory before so I wasn’t too fussed about going to another. We’d heard that it had some colourful architecture, so that’s what we went looking for. It turned out however that we had got confused, the colourful architecture was in Burano, not Murano. We had a bit of a wander around before getting the ferry back. I think we spent more time travelling back than we did actually on the island. It took a good hour to get back to San Marco square but it was okay because I had a nice nap.
After returning to dry land, we realised we still had hours before we even needed to think about leaving for the bus. We’d been told to see as many churches as possible during our stay, which we hadn’t done, and there was one close to our hostel called Redentore. Again our student discount came in handy and reduced our entry from about €3.00 to €1.50. Sadly it didn’t take up as much time as we needed it to but it really was beautiful. It wasn’t like any church I’d seen before, it was like a temple, crossed with a mini-gallery, crossed with a church.
We didn’t want to venture too far from our hostel so that we would have plenty of time to get our luggage and catch the ferry later. I’d seen that there was a gallery close by on Giudecca so we thought we might as well try that. As we approached, I realised I had seen advertisements around the city for the exhibition, which appeared to be photography. Sadly, this seemed to be the one place our student discount didn’t apply, so we had to pay the full €10 but it was certainly worth it.
The exhibition was called Genesis by Sebastião Salgado and was hosted in La Casa dei Tre Oci. Built in 1913 by Mario De Maria (Marius Pictor) in the neo-Gothic style, it was as much on display as the photographs. The exhibition itself was one of the highlights of our stay. Focusing on untouched landscapes all over the world and on ancient tribes, the black and white images were like David Attenborough meets Human Planet and were aimed at persuading the audience to protect the environment and preserve cultures. The images were beautiful and it was the perfect way to end our stay.
The last bus to the station left from Piazzale Roma at 7.30pm. It would get us 2 hours before our flight just as we needed, but we were worried we would miss it so aimed for the one before at 7pm, particularly as we were only half sure about the timetable. It took us about 40 minutes to get there and after we found a ticket office and confirmed the times, we decided to get a quick dinner.
Our free walking tour yesterday had started by the train station at Ferrovia, which was just over the bridge from the bus station. We knew there was plenty to eat around there and after sticking our heads in a few doors, we found Brek Ristorante and had some kind of sandwich-thing with cheese, prosciutto and courgette. Whilst it was a bit expensive, it was our last meal so didn’t mind a splurge and we were able to eat it by the river.
That is where my story of Venice ends. I could tell you about my airport wait and delayed flight and running through the airport at Stanstead to catch the last train back into London, but that’s probably best left alone.