Venice, by walking?

YES! It is possible to walk in Venice. Though this city of islands’s main roads are actually canals and primary transportation mode is by boats, still, there are streets and alleyways for where one can meander along the waterways and cross over the many pretty Venetian bridges in tranquility.

Needless to say, one can also get to discover more local delights and stumble upon one too many refreshing sights of Venice, that one might miss by just taking the watertaxi or bus.

Venice certainly warrants more than one trip as I found out for myself. The first time I was in Venice was during winter for the Carnival. As you might have guessed, the sky was pretty grey and it was raining throughout. The water level rose and spilled over to flood the streets. However, despite the weather and chilly temperature, Venice still exudes a wintery charm, like a distant and proud aristocrat, so unattainable, yet so pretty, mysterious and alluring at the same time.

True enough, in the words of Jacopo Sansovino, Italian scrulptor and architect whose important works included that in Piazza San Marco in Venice itself :

“It is held by some that this word VENETIA signifies VENI ETIAM, that is, come again, and again, for however oft you come, you will always see new things, and new beauties.”

Venice remained in my heart and mind until I decided to make a return trip in spring time to rediscover this city. But this time, I went around by foot instead. Indeed, Venice did not quite look the same as the previous time I was there. She was brighter (thanks to the sun and cloudless sky), though the city was as busy as it was in winter.

(To see the descriptions of the photos, simply place your cursor and click on the photos.)

Get armed with a 2.50 euro map which can be bought at newstands and you can be well on your adventure! (Unfortunately, there doesn’t seem to have any free Venice map available).

Do spend at least 2 nights in Venice as there are many things to see. Do not rush to everywhere within 1 or 2 days, for the sake of “I have seen Venice” goal. One might have “seen” superficially, but how much does one understand the city and her locals? Unless a next trip back to Venice is already in mind.

Do spare time to chill by the canals, getting a nice tan or sipping caffé or wine and having a meal à l’extérieur. Transportation-wise, simply take the waterbus to make a tour in and about Venice. Not forgetting that you also can take leisure strolls in the many small alleyways whenever you decide to be away from the hordes of other tourists. Of course, if you are feeling more generous, take the gondola and hear the glorious stories of Venice as you sail down the canals.

Otherwise, if you are tight for time, this is a good reason to come back another time perhaps in a different season to see the difference in the charm she exudes.

Be prepared to fall in love.

Si, ci tornerò sicuramente, e si?

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Welcome to the buried city of Pompeii, where time stood still

Pompeii, an ancient Roman city that was buried under the dust, hot lava, ashes of the threatening Mt Vesuvius in AD 79, where lives of the ordinary, and the not so ordinary were wiped out almost in an instant. Ironically, thanks to these debris that this once city was pretty much well-preserved as if time had stood still. Today, we have the chance to have a glimpse into what life was like then.

During the summer months, be cautioned that it is going to be soaring heats and swelling crowds. Still very much a dusty place, so do prepare yourself lots of water and a damp towel to cool yourself down!

Do arm yourself with a map as well as Pompeii is very big and spending 6 hours there actually was not enough. Unfortunately, we did not have time to see the erotic paintings. It is a sign that we have to return again.

Pompeii is still not fully uncovered yet. But given the throngs of tourists and the exposure to the natural elements that threaten the precise state of this buried city, sometimes one wonders whether it is better for it to lie as it was?

Mural of a deer… Often their murals will depict scenes of daily lives of hunting, or parties or household activities.

Imagine if these murals at their newest and the room, though small, could possibly be a room for the family member or distinguished guests.

Looks like a bath area

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Their earthen wares

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Many of these bodies give us a glimpse of their anguish and helplessness at the time of the horrible incident. The ash of their destroyer actually preserve them to tell of their last moments to us in this day.

Bath and toilet area in the same rich family’s house

Look at the intricate carvings overhead. Being entertained in all senses while having a bath during those days

Roman baths… where all sorts of activities could had taken place… this is an intelligent roman engineering which nonetheless proves impressive by today’s standards.

The colosseum, smaller than that in Rome

Pompeii was obviously not built on a flat land… they even had their own cemetery at the far end of the city

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Monsieur was having a sudden interest in Pompeii having arrived there.

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On the rooftop

Marble tiles that are as of AD 79. Can anyone guess what the hole was for?

Red seems to be a favorite color for walls in the houses of the rich Pompeiians

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This might had been a marketplace where merchants and all sorts of people gathered during those days to trade or chit-chat

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The main arena

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This could well had been some big courtyard

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