In Love on the Grand Canal

English: Venice: Italy: 1913 map of city center
English: Venice: Italy: 1913 map of city center (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I wouldn’t leave Italy without achieving three tickets on my bucket list. The first: a gondola ride on the Grand Canal. And what a grand time we had.

The Grand Canal is Venice‘s major waterway and it divides the city in two. It looks like an upside down S making the east and west side look like two hands grabbing each other. (See the illustration to the left).

The glory of this canal is the splendid buildings lining either side–from gorgeous cathedrals like the Church of the Scalzi to the Rialto Bridge to mundane, everyday homes.

We boarded our gondola on some backwater alleyway (literally) just off the Piazza San Marco, and sailed down the Cannaregio Canal. While marveling at the glories of Venice, and accordion player and singer regaled us with quintessential Italian folk songs: “Amore,” “Ciao Venezia,” “O Sola Mia,” and more.

Neil and I could cuddle with gondolier in the back of us, the muscians to the front and crowds of tourists staring in envy from the myriad bridges.

We didn’t sail as far north as the Rialto Bridge–but that was a sight. It’s the oldest of the bridges spaning the Grand Canal. It hosts twenty-four shops, has upper floors overlooking the canal.


The full day in Venice held more than this blog could tell: wonderful food, shops with glorious wares, glass factory, masks celebrating the Carnivale–just like the Mardi Gras. I need to return.

Basilica di Santa Maria della Salute



The Grand Canal


Neil LOVED the ride


Love on the Grand Canal



a balcony along the canal
Our serenade

No Comments

  1. So many places to see, Holly. We loved Italy–so beautiful and historic and art-filled.

  2. Love the pictures. You took me there! We returned from a trip to Europe this past fall, but didn't get to Venice. Went to Lourdes France and London. What fun! I love to travel, too.

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