On our fifth day in Italy, we had to cross the country, coast to coast, by train. From door to door it was almost 7 hours. Whose idea was this?! (Oh right, it was mine…)
We caught the 11 am train from Levanto to Milan, and were lucky enough to get a compartment of 6 seats that was empty for most of the trip. The closed door design of the compartment made it easier to let Maple explore and play, rather than having to make her sit still in a conventional seat. She also got to sleep!
In Milan we transferred to a different train, and then continued on to Venice, arriving around 4:30.
It was a looooong day of confinement for Maple and I must say she handled it like an angel. Thank goodness she loved playing with her soccer ball on the train.
I was so excited to arrive in Venice, but outside the Venice train station I was disappointed by the sheer mass of tourists and tacky souvenir shops and grime. I didn’t remember this from last time.
The waterbus took us out the north end of the island and down the west coast of Venice, and as we passed the San Marco area with its incredible architecture, I remembered why I love this city. I was wearing Maple during the trip, and I stood at the window as she slept soundly through all the bumping on the waves.
We got off the vaporetto at Giardini (gardens) stop, and walked through the park to Via Garabaldi. We had rented this Air BnB apartment in the Castello neighborhood, intentionally seeking out a quieter part of the city that still belongs to the locals. The neighborhood is at the edge of the island, and is quiet most of the year, except when the Biennale event brings hundreds of thousands of people to see its cultural exhibits.
After we got settled into the apartment, we went out and grabbed cheap pizza for dinner at one of the dozens of bars on Via Garabaldi.
We were right at the end, where the street meets the bay, and were able to see a cloudy sunset.
After a brief walk to get the feel of the street, we headed back to go to sleep. Maple had her own bedroom this time, and had some trouble going to sleep. But once she was out, we were able to relax without worrying that we would wake her up.