Buongiorno from Venice,
We arrived in Venice by train on 6 March, and caught the Vaporetto to S.MARCO Vallaresso, where we met our host, Marco, who lead us the short distance to our accommodation. Venetian Infinity Apartment This was to be our home for the next 3 nights. (Thanks for the recommendation, Alan & Julie). That night we visited San Marco Square, and then discovered after a long trek through the lanes and over the countless bridges the supermarket.
On our first full day we walked around to familiarise ourselves with the city and discover the sights. We visited the Peggy Guggenheim Museum, walked over the Accademia Bridge, fought the crowds at Piazzo San Marco, Basilica San Marco, and St Mark’s Campanile, after which we decided we needed a break from tourists and walked along the waterfront to the gardens and enjoyed the quiet and the setting sun.

The next day we bought a ‘day pass’ for the Vaporetto and spent much of the day doing ‘hop on, hop off’. We visited a gallery that was displaying working models of some of da Vinci’s ideas. Da Vinci is big at the moment because it is 500 years since he died. At the moment there are excellent exhibitions in the UK and in Italy that we have seen.
On one of our many landings and after crossing the Rialto Bridge we searched out a restaurant that Marco (our host) had recommended. After much searching we found it, Trattoria Ca’ d’oro-Alla Vedova, magnifico! and well worth the effort of the search. After lunch we also visited the market and Basílica de Santa Maria della Salute, which was just lovely. Dinner that night was at ‘Chat Qui Rit’. We shared the building courtyard and garbage bins with the restaurant.

Each morning I got up very early and headed out to see if there were any photos to be had, I used my ‘Photographer’s Ephemeris’ app. Checked out the angles of the rising sun, got ‘east and west’ sorted, times of sunrise, blue hour, golden hour, the lot, only one very ‘slight’ problem…..FOG, every morning I was out there, every morning, so was the fog, except, the morning we had to leave. At least we had a nice ride to the airport in beautiful conditions, warmer, blue sky and beaming sunlight! c’est la vie, (hang on, not in France yet) così è la vita!

Lance & Barbara




On Thursday we made the train trip to the wonderful town of Siena. We got there later than expected, (once again a stop at every station local train) so the first thing we needed to do when we arrived was to have lunch.  We came across a Pizza shop that had special deals, two enormous pieces of Pizza and a drink for 5 Euro.  The Pizza was fantastic, so we were off to a good start. Continue reading “SIENA and VERONA”


Buongiorno from Florence,

We arrived in Florence, got ourselves out of the train station and caught a taxi to ‘Torre Guelfa’, a hotel we have stayed in several times before. It has a wonderful feel, the staff are extremely friendly and we have always enjoyed our time there.  The Hotel had some renovations done in 2010 but all the qualities that we have enjoyed in the past remained the same, like the service, the breakfast and the tower. Continue reading “FLORENCE”



After 23 hours of flying via Singapore and London, we arrived in Milano at 1045, Friday morning and caught a taxi to our hotel.  We got out of the taxi to the sounds of much “yelling and screaming”; a local was having a heated discussion with someone on the telephone outside of our Hotel, I didn’t need a translator to realise this guy was annoyed to say the least. This, on top of the 60 km taxi ride from the airport where our driver “Juan Manuel Fangio” talked on his mobile phone while weaving in and out of traffic, no indicators, (hands busy holding the phone!) speed limit signs were treated as the lower speed at which you travelled!  All this and a bit of tailgating thrown in, “Welcome to Milano”! Continue reading “MILANO”