Backpacking Venice:Italy

9.23.2015 Venice, Italy

You can’t go wrong with patience in Venice,because that’s all you need - lots and lots of it.Everywhere I can see I can see water.Yes I have been to locations with splendid sea but not on locations that survives on vaporetto(water bus) 24 * 7 on the seemingly endless lagoon with islands.Getting used to the view that we seldom see everyday lost in the narrow alleyways(calli),squares(campi) and quarters(sestieri) of Venice,it is surprise reloaded and one of the most intriguing cities I have ever been to.This time  with no plans I had decided to let Venice be as casual as it can be for the three days I was there.

View of Venice from Bell Tower 

 Even when the sun used to come late and go early I came back content.In late October last year,it was mild cold and the sun would set by 4:30pm or max by 5:30pm.I wondered how the city was formed around water and how history shaped into such efficient water ways.Venice was also the first city I faced racism in Europe although the beauty of the place overpowered the negative aspects of it though not everyone faces it.We'll talk about it as we go further.

Previous Posts on Italy
Backpacking Rome:Hostel,Colloseum and Pizza
Backpacking Rome:Trevi Fountain and Piazza Del Popolo

 Rome To Venice:My Train Journey 

Venice is dream-like.

 As I told you when I backpacked Rome apart from a few essentials like stay and transfer tickets nothing was pre-decided - not even 'which places to go'.Stay and tickets because I could get great deals online prior.What I didn’t check prior was where I was going to stay(the reviews said the location is near and was but still) another island.That realization came when I boarded the train (Tickets Rs 1000) at Roma Termini to Ve.Mestre.You can buy your tickets at RailEurope.

I should’ve at least looked at the map which a family of four from Singapore in an adjacent seat on the train did it for me.They warned me that both Venice and Paris are going to be expensive.They warned me of pick pocketing. And they chatted with me the whole 5 hours which without them otherwise would have had been boring.

Strangers ain't always threatening.Sometimes they are who you need the most.

 I remember at one of the intermediate stations I was hungry and I had nothing to eat in my backpack.The stoppage was for a few minutes and I was little apprehensive of getting down from train and trying my luck at the station.However,the confidence the gentleman of the family gave me was unbeatable.He said his wife to go in.And we both ran towards the food box from where I inserted my coins in and sandwich came out and ran just in time before the train started running. The letters written on the box were Italian and we played a little 'what could be game inside' then and there.Sadly what we thought as plain old cheese sandwich(as the name resembled Cheese) was stale bacon sandwich with cheese.Enjoyed the experience but hard luck on food. Couldn’t chew a bit as the smell and taste both were bad even after the bacon removed.

Lesson Learnt:Carry light snack in your backpack or Know That In some countries Cheese Sandwich means Cheese Bacon Sandwich.

 There after,as we chatted,he opened his map and pointed his finger towards it 'You are in an island,look here - LIDO(spelt loud) - an island 12km long ’.And that's not the main island.There are 19 scheduled vaporetto lines that service locales within Venice and nearby islands : Murano and Lido.

Lesson Learnt:In Venice carry a map.Nowhere else I did.But in Venice walking or taking a veporetto becomes easier when you carry one.

Map Route of Venice

Their whole family was concerned on how will I manage alone and started helping me on how easy or difficult it's gonna be.They said they were staying at Mestre(last station) which had cheaper accommodation options but I would have to take a train to Santa Lucia.Another train? Well,I knew then and there Venice is going to be an adventure again.Not that I was stressed but I didn’t know if self-skipping the whole research part was a good thing but I chose to go with the flow.

Lesson Learnt:Even if you don't research,things most likely will go well.

 As they along with everyone else got down at Mestre,they bid me goodbye while I stood at the ticket counter to get my second class ticket on the station at Platform 1.I checked the departure times for Venezia S.L(Venezia Santa Lucia),got my ticket and validated my ticket on the platform.Do validate because if you don’t they can fine you when you board the train.The journey was for 10 minutes.

Lesson Learnt:Do Validate Your Ticket at the platform automated validation machine.There is no one standing to tell you so but they do sometimes check your tickets in the train.

Validate your ticket for Vaporetto and Buses too.

 The journey was beautiful.There weren’t many people on the train.The train took us through a lovely change from the land to the lagoon.When I got down at Santa Lucia,I got myself a 24 hour pass(1 day) on all modes of transport including water bus/vaporetto.The ACTV boat landings are about 50 meters from the station exit. I think I took the Line 1 from Gate E.It took about 1 hour of a ride.

Taxi = Water Bus :P at Santa Lucia,you will get day passes here and information on which water bus to take.

Right across the Station

For those willing to be nearest to the touristy landmarks,stay at St. Mark's(San Marco) although the prices are sky rocket high at St. Mark's as one of the tourist from India told me.Or like me or the family I met at train,Stay at Lido or Mestre or the islands.But remember you still would have to come to St.Mark's for the important land marks.That way you could be staying cheaper and better places of stay.

Me,in the vaporetto towards Lido

Sometimes in the Vaporetto the announcement on stations are not made.
Do keep looking at the chart in front with station numbers and get down at yours,especially at night.
Each Vaporetto has a chart with directions and sequence of station written in order.
Losing sense of direction in water for a newcomer is nothing new.
Most people in Venice know where to get down because that's their public conveyance irrespective of announcements.

The Lido Jetty Sunset

My hotel(Ca Del Moro) at Lido was great(2 nights 3 days costed me around 3391 Rs).It was quarters style and they had indoor tennis courts,sports center,an indoor cafe etc.When I reached Lido,I took a local bus to my hotel.The only glitch is since Lido is not as touristic,it gets deserted at mid night though not for a moment I felt unsafe just a very few souls walking by.The best part was that the buses and the vaporettos were timely.

The uncle at train had also told me Lido had a beach.I was excited but not sure if I could get time to see it all..

Visit Italia.It for Official Tourism Details

 Well with this lets begin our journey to St. Marks and Rialto :)

/* Thanks to Skyscanner and Blogadda that made me win 1 lakh in a contest and hence I could stay and travel a month in Europe */ 


  1. Your photos reminded me of my own trip to Venice! It is undoubtedly too beautiful :-)

  2. Thanks Richa! How many days were you in Venice?I wish I had spend little more time there :) It was so beautiful.

  3. nice to know. Couldn't go to south Europe this time..

  4. Too bad that you had to face racism but good that it didn't get elaborated in article...taking away the beauty of Venice. Good choice!

  5. Venice is one of my favourite place too.... Hope you went to Murrano to see the craftsmanship of the glass makers...

    Btw I am a travel blogger too... Stay connected on

  6. Just read your blog about Venice... Had a virtual tour. Me and my friends are planning since long for Europe trip but couldn't make it . Hope your blog will help us to make it successful.


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