Queer Venice for Families – 2TravelDads

Author: , October 26th, 2018

queer venice - 2traveldads

When you live in the United States and you think about taking a trip to Europe, your mind darts so quickly from place to place and you start to create an enormous to-do list of sights and experiences you MUST cross off. Venice, Italy is at the top for everybody, I swear, and rightly so. But today you hear stories from everybody who visits of being over-run by tourists and walking through narrow streets in single file lines. Not cool. But we know how to enjoy a stress-free trip to Venice and now you can too.

Known as “la Serenissima”, the most serene, Venice is chalked full of history and beauty. It’s calm and peaceful in the wee hours, and yet it’s crazy and crowded with tourists in the daytime and around famous landmarks. Our method of exploring and tips are sure to help you have a relaxing and unforgettable trip to Venice.

Living on the west coast of the USA, the oldest structures we have anywhere are barely 150 years old, so immediately any fascinating architecture must go on the travel list. And then there is art. In the Seattle area we are inundated with local art (subjects of orca whales, boats, produce, modernism…), so the chance to visit every single museum filled with historic pieces in every city cannot be missed. But here’s some real talk: if you want to enjoy Venice stress free, let yourself be okay with not visiting every single museum.

Oh, and food. I can’t even begin to talk about that, so our friend Kavita will tackle that for us over on her blog. The best food in Venice should be left to the experts. My only thing to say about the food in Venice is that their preparation of seafood is unique in comparison with other places in Italy and at least one meal in Venice needs to be local seafood dishes.

You could say that Venice is a foot traffic nightmare, and you wouldn’t be lying, but that doesn’t mean it has to cause anxiety. Stress free Venice is all about letting the city lead you to the best experiences for YOU.

By Rob Taylor – Full Story at 2TravelDads

Venice Gay Travel Resources

 

Gay Friendly Venice Hotels – The Nomadic Boys

Author: , October 18th, 2018

Gay Friendly Venice Hotels - The Nomadic Boys

Venice will always have a special place in the Nomadic Boys’ hearts. It was where we celebrated one of our earlier anniversaries together as a young gay couple, visiting for a romantic weekend. And boy did we love it!

This is the place where you will want to profess your love to your significant other, on a cheesy gondola ride through the picture perfect canals, marvelling at the same buildings James Bond was blowing up in “Casino Royale“.

You can’t beat gay friendly Venice for its charm. It’s world famous for good reason, which is why we chose to spend our first anniversary here. When researching, we stumbled on several gay friendly places to stay both in the city, and around. When choosing where to stay in Venice, it’s also worth considering the area outside the city as there are more options for gay bars and clubs in Padua and Verona than in Venice itself.

Villa Gasparini: unique Venetian villa

This is one of those hidden gems you’ll want to check out. It’s actually located just outside the built up Venice island area in “Dolo”, around 30 minutes by bus. It is a gorgeous Venetian villa, recently refurbished, with just 15 rooms, some with a private Jacuzzi. We particularly love that they have special packages for LGBTQ travellers.

The reason we recommend this for gay travellers to Venice is because from our experience, Venice as beautiful as it is, lacks any gay hangouts. It is city mainly filled with hotels, museums, gorgeous buildings etc, but lacks much local life. For the best gay nightlife when visiting Venice, you’ll want to head to either Padua or Verona, which Villa Gasparini is located near to. Therefore, staying here is ideal for not only being close to the touristic highlights in Venice, but also being close to the best gay hangouts that LGBTQ locals go to like Anima + Hot Dog Club in Padua + Lucla and Romeo’s Club in Verona.

By Stefan Arstis – Full Story at The Nomadic Boys

Venice Gay Travel Resources

 

5 Interesting Facts about the Doge’s Palace in Venice – Keep Calm and Wander

Author: , September 8th, 2018

Doge's Palace - Keep Calm and Wander

If anything that strikes our minds after hearing the name “Italy”, it is definitely Venice – a city where everything is shrouded in romance and intrigue. Doge’s Palace, in particular, is one of those places.

Here are some interesting facts about it.

1. It exhibits Gothic Architecture

The architectural exuberance of the palace is the first thing that meets the eyes of an onlooker. The building is purely gothic; however, there is a huge influence of the Venetian art; thus, making it Venetian Gothic style.

2. The “White House” in its heyday

This palace was the central government building at its peak time. “Doge of Venice” or the ruler used to live here with his family for his lifetime.

By Alain – Full Story at Keep Calm and Wander

Venice Gay Travel Resources

Ten Things to Do in Venice – Keep Calm and Wander

Author: , August 10th, 2018

Venice - Keep Calm and Wander

Lying on 117 small islands, Venice is an Italian haven for tourists, cradling 250,000 residents. I had the pleasure of visiting it last summer. Here’s my list.

1. San Marco Cathedral and Square

A perfect place to people-watch, San Marco square has three famous tourist sites, namely Doge’s Palace, San Marco Cathedral, and Torre dell’Orologio.

2. Doge Palace / Palazzo Ducale

Next to the San Marco Cathedral is a true masterpiece of Gothic architecture, the Doge Palace or the Palazzo Ducale has served as the seat of the Venetian government in the past. All the remains of that and the gothic past of the palace are all too mesmerizing.

By Alain – Full Story at Keep Calm and Wander

Venice Gay Travel Resources

Basilica Santa Maria della Salute in Venice – Keep Calm and Wander

Author: , August 2nd, 2018

Basilica Santa Maria della Salute in Venice - Keep Calm and Wander

Standing at the mouth of the Grand Canal, Basilica Santa Maria della Salute ‘s imposing Baroque structure looks like it guards the beautiful city of Venice. Its impressive dome was put in by the survivors of the plague. For their salvation, the city built the church as a dedication to Our Lady of Health/Deliverance (Salute).

One of the survivors of the plague was Titian who died at age 94. Inside, you’ll find 12 of his original paintings hanging at the sacristy.

Unfortunately for me, despite running as fast as I could, the basilica was already closed when I went there. Well, I arrived there at 4:45 PM but they told me that they won’t sell me tickets anymore because they’d be closing soon. And it was my last day in the city, so no more time to go back the next day.

By Alain – Full Story at Keep Calm and Wander

Venice Gay Travel Resources

Rialto Bridge Views – Keep Calm and Wander

Author: , July 27th, 2018

Realto Bridge Views in Venice - Keep Calm and Wander

Rialto Bridge is the oldest bridge in Venice that connects San Marco and San Polo areas. It was first but in the 12th century and has been rebuilt so many times since then. There’s no doubt that Rialto Bridge is the most famous bridge and most photogenic of all 4 bridges in the Grand Canal. You can’t speak of Venice without mentioning the Realto Bridge.

Today, no tourists would miss crossing the bridge and leave his footprints without standing on it. It has become one of the city’s most-visited tourist attractions.

As you can see, Rialto Bridge is a covered bridge, which is a good thing, especially under the summer heat.

However, due to constant foot traffic and camwhoring tourists, you might not be able to litter here for a long time. Don’t be selfish. Give others a chance to take their own photos.

By Alain – Full Story at Keep Calm and Wander

Venice Gay Travel Resources

The Mosaics of San Marco Basilica – Keep Calm and Wander

Author: , October 12th, 2017

San Marco Basilica - Alain

These mosaics of San Marco Basilica are from 11-th century but they never lose their luster. They’re our windows to Byzantine arts.

Be warned: you can’t take photos inside St. Mark’s Basilica. While there’s no entrance fee, the number of visitors allowed to get inside is controlled, limited. There’s usually a queue outside in the morning and late afternoon. Go inside at lunch time when tourists try to avoid the nasty summer heat. A huge hat or an umbrella can be helpful, too.

One of the most interesting things to ogle at Basilica di San Marco is the presence of mosaics. You can’t miss them. They’re ubiquitous inside and on the facade of this holy place. You’ve got to remember that these mosaics date back from 11th century. Though their colours aren’t as brights as ages ago, they refuse to fade.

Except for the last mosaic (which I took near the entrance), the rest were taken from the facade. The ones that decorate the portals outside are said to be the oldest mosaics of the basilica.

By Alain – Full Story at Keep Calm and Wander

Venice Gay Travel Resources

Venice View from the Top of San Marco Tower – Keep Calm and Wander

Author: , October 9th, 2017

Venice View - Keep Calm and Wander

The view of Venice from the top of San Marco campanile (St. Mark Bell Tower) at sunset is beyond mesmerizing. It’s magical! Looking down at the red-tiled roofs and a host of unique architectural designs, I had goosebumps that I’d remember forever. Yes, Venice is crowded with tourists and even on the campanile but seeing the Canal City from above gave me a different perspective of the crowded alleys and waterways.

The domes of Basilica di San Marco (St. Mark’s Basilica) are so close that you’d think they’re within your reach. The sea that surrounds the island is teeming with ferries, boats and gondolas bussing around and about. The afternoon sun turns everything the city has to offer into a world so far yet so familiar when you’re in Italy. On a good summer day, you’ll see all the neighbouring islands as colourful as Venice.

Don’t just see as far as your eyes can see but keep your eyes on the sculptures that stand on top of every buildings that surround the campanile. The San Marco Square below you is one huge public space that slowly transforms as the sun is setting. Outdoor tables and chairs are neatly arranged for the diners, complete with uniformed waiters and candle lights. A romantic night ahead is fully set up for lovers, honeymooners, random stranger dates and, probably, for a happy solo traveler.

By Alain – Full Story at Keep Calm and Wander

Venice Gay Travel Resources

Venice Off-Season – Passport Magazine

Author: , October 5th, 2017

Venice off-season

One can try to describe Venice, but honestly it deserves to be experienced in person to be understood, to be felt, and to be appreciated. The city itself is a living, breathing, historical phenomenon. Every time I travel there I have to blink several times to make sure I’m not on a Hollywood movie set.

I’ve experienced this floating city made up of 118 islands during all times of the year, but by far my favorite is October through April, the off-season. Why would you consider fall, winter, or early spring in Venice? It’s less crowded, less expensive, less lines for museums and events, less heat, and no mosquitoes! It’s also much easier to get restaurant reservations and tickets to shows and recitals.

My love affair with Venice off-season wasn’t intentional, it happened quite accidentally. I made several trips in the fall and winter traveling to Venice, with my friend Bud, to do research for a new novel I am writing, Acqua Alta. The title in Italian means “high water” and refers to the annual flooding of the city that occurs commonly between September and February. I was hoping there would be an aqua alta while I visited, but that’s like going to Iceland and hoping to see the Northern Lights. It doesn’t always happen. And if it didn’t, that was okay, because I also wanted to explore the city to scout out locations that would appear in the book.

When I fly into Marco Polo Airport I hire a water taxi to get to wherever I’m staying. You can certainly ride the vaporetto, which is Venice’s waterbus. It’s inexpensive, but they can be very crowded, and with luggage it can actually be quite anxiety producing. Usually, overnight flights from the United States arrive during Venice’s morning rush hour. So I spend a little more money and hire a “shared” or a “private” water taxi online through Venice Link.

By Arthur Wooten – Full Story at Passport Magazine

Gay Venice Travel Resources

Alle Guglie B&B – Gay Venice Bed & Breakfast

Author: , July 2nd, 2017

Alle Guglie B&B

Periodically we’ll feature one of our properties here to let our readers know about some great gay friendly places to stay:

Alle Guglie B&B is a charming Venetian bed and breakfast located in the Cannaregio district, convenient from the train station (just a five minute walk) or Piazzale Roma. Cannaregio is one of the few districts where you can still feel the “real Venice”, away from the tourist mass areas; you’ll find wide roads and canals, great Italian bars and cafes, and a taste of Venetian day-to-day life.

Alle Guglie is also a great place to use as a base to explore all that Venice offers – in about fifteen minutes on foot you’ll be at Rialto bridge and few more at St. Mark’s Square.

We’re also just a short walk from the ancient Jewish Ghetto, and literally steps from the Cannaregio boat stop on the canal where you can catch a direct boat to the island of Murano (known for the world-famous glass makers), or Burano (famous for the lace production and the different colors houses), and Torcello with its magnificent cathedral.

Alle Guglie is an apartment on the top floor of a sixteenth-century building, off a private courtyard away from the main street. We only offer one guest room, so you’ll have a lot of privacy and the total attention of your host, Antonio.

The very quiet guestroom is large and sunny, has its own private furnished balcony, A/C, radio, collection of books and guides about the city and dedicated bathroom.

Antonio provides full breakfast with fresh bread and croissants, marmalade, orange juice, yogurt, brioches, cereal, and everything else you might need for a great start of the day.

During the good season, you can enjoy breakfast on common the balcony overlooking an ancient courtyard; in the winter, he serves breakfast in the kitchen where you always find a coffee and tea available.

Your stay includes continental breakfast each morning, bedding and towels, and anything else you may need to make your visit perfect and confortable.

Antonio, who has been running the bed and breakfast for about ten years, knows the city inside and out has a degree in Art history and can direct you to great museums, churches, restaurants, activities around the city. He can also point you to the best gay cafes and bars.

Come stay with Antonio at Alle Guglie by yourself or with your partner, and enjoy the real gay Venice.

See the Alle Guglie B&B Expanded Listing on Purple Roofs Here

Gay Friendly Bed and Breakfasts, Hotels, and Vacation Rentals in Venice