“Last weekend in Venice, I splurged on a gondola ride and came away with three tips for travelers looking to get a gondolier’s-eye view of the city: 1.) The price for a half-hour gondola ride increases from 80 euros before 7 p.m. to 100 euros afterward, so go at 6:30, when sunset is close enough and the crowds and heat of the day have died down. 2.) Stay away from big, busy thoroughfares such as the Grand Canal. Choose a more quiet neighborhood where the canals are narrow and serene. 3.) Choose a gondolier with a great costume and hat, as it makes for better photos.” —Consumer News Director Wendy Perrin, fresh off her Adriatic cruise. Check out her travel diary and trip report!
Posts tagged Seen Last Weekend.
“What’s fascinating about this Dalmatian Coast cruise I’m on is to see various ancient walled cities—Dubrovnik, Korcula, Kotor, Diocletian’s Palace in Split—in varying stages of tourism development. The least developed—and, for that reason, the most enticing to me personally—has been Kotor, in Montenegro. My husband and I climbed 1,300 feet to the top of Kotor Fortress so we could shoot this pic of the Bay of Kotor. (Can you spot our ship, the Azamara Quest, docked below?) Imagine Dubrovnik before it got a cable car, a 3-D movie, a Ralph Lauren shop, Surf ‘n’ Fries, and 10,000 cruise-ship daytrippers, and you’ve got Kotor. It’s the next Hvar, in my humble opinion—it’s already been discovered by the multi-million-dollar yachts (all flagged in tax havens) docked in its harbor—so… get there SOON!” —More Mediterranean dispatches from Consumer News Director Wendy Perrin
“Last weekend, in Venice to board a ship for an Adriatic cruise, I turned what could have been a boring hotel-to-pier transfer into a cool sightseeing experience: I hired a water taxi to take me and my husband from the Piazza San Marco, where our hotel was, up the entire length of the Grand Canal to the cruise pier. We motored under the Rialto and past countless famous museums, palazzos, and vaporetti. We had a gondolier’s-eye view of Venice. Eventually we wound out of the touristy heart of the city and into neighborhoods where the locals live their everyday lives and that we would never have seen otherwise. And we were dropped off just a few feet from our cruise check-in desk. The cost? 110 euros—a bargain for an unforgettable and quintessentially Venetian experience.” —Consumer News Director Wendy Perrin, currently cruising the Mediterranean
“While in Kyoto, I spent a half-day in Nara, a town about 45 minutes away by train. Nara is best known for its plethora of temples and shrines; I, however, was much more taken with the deer that freely roam the town’s large park and are so unafraid of humans that a few walked right up and nuzzled me, presumably looking for snacks.” —Kathryn Maier’s most adorable of moments in Japan