Venice is one of those cities that are instantly recognisable. Walking through its narrow streets is like finding yourself in a movie set.
St. Mark’s Square is the entry point to the city for many. Lined with gloriously grand buildings like the Basilica di San Marco or Procuratie Vecchie, it’s full of tourists and street vendors, a constant hustle and bustle.
But wander into the streets leading away from the square and you can quickly lose yourself in quiet backstreets.
This was my favourite part of visiting Venice: exploring the side streets, turning suddenly and finding a street completely empty of people.
Around every corner is something unexpected: narrow alleyways open up into beautiful, light-filled squares, lined with cafes and churches.
The water of the canals laps softly against the buildings, as bridges arch gracefully across.
Walking through Venice is a bit like wandering through a museum, one where centuries of history give way to glimpses of modern life. Alongside the gently cruising gondolas you can see water ambulances or DHL delivery boats; designer stores sit in contrast with tiny, family run shops. Children play inside nursery schools, founded in ancient townhouses.
I’d love to catch a glimpse inside some of the city’s private residences and see how its people live in this beautifully preserved place.
Venice is romantic, it’s magical; it’s a place that travel dreams are made of.