Friday, June 27, 2008

Venice

We are home safe and sound. It was a long 24 hour day of traveling, but it is good to be home. We both slept SO well in our own bed (how I love my bed) and were up wide awake at the glorious hour of 5AM (yay jet lag :)

Now, I know we're home now, but it just wouldn't be complete if I didn't blog about Venice. We didn't do any museums (and our feet thanked us), just enjoyed the city.. and a beautiful city it is. We soaked up the city, got lost and of course, did a gondola ride. It was perfect.











Okay, if Mike were reading this he'd add to the "perfect" that it was also REALLY HOT... like 35degrees hot. Thank goodness for the tiny shady streets, cause out in the sun it was almost unbearable. We took a trip out to two beautiful islands near Venice, Murano (where they make glass) and Burano (where they make lace). They were cute little islands... especially Burano, they had just the cutest, brightly coloured houses you could imagine.

It was really cool to watch the guys in the factories:




Check out this guy and his sexy ladies, haha:





The thing I'll remember the most about Venice is the peace and quiet. Mike and I both marveled at how quiet and peaceful and city is with no cars, it's amazing. You just can't go to Italy without seeing Venice. It was a wonderful finale to a wonderful vacation.

Vernazza - Part 2

Vernazza was really that good and okay maybe I exaggerated just a little when I said all we did was eat and lay on the beach (but that still was a good portion of it). Here's a few more pics. The Cinque Terre like I said is five villages along the coast separated by mountain and ocean and you can hike from one end to the other. This takes about 5 hours and though we were sure this would be amazing and definitely a wonderful hike, we opted to do the last "20 minute long" leg. Come on, cut us some slack we've been in Italy for 2 weeks and it seems all we've been doing is walking, a five hour leisurely stroll just wasn't on the agenda this time around ; )

The last leg is the highlight though and called the Via dell'Amore aka The Path of Love...awwwww.






Lovers have been coming here since the road was originally created connecting the villages and it became a fad to close a lock together to "seal your love". It was all really quite romantic even the grafitti on the walls tugs at your heart strings, just part of the history and charm.





Vernazza also was the best hotel yet. It was modern, clean and had an amazing view. Not to mention it was run by a nice lady and her son aka Superman who lugged BOTH of our luggage up many tiny little stairs... I struggled with the carry on.





View from hotel:



Looking down on the view from the terrace:



Superman:




Ooo! And we went kayaking...

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Vernazza, Cinque Terre

Vernazza was awesome and relaxing. Cinque Terre means five villages and basically that is what it is, five villages hidden along the coast with death trap roads leading into it. Getting there was quite the adventure. I'm not kidding when I say we have walking paths in Canada bigger than these roads. It was a white knuckled drive hoping we didn't run into any other cars, but absolutely worth it for the view...





BREATH.TAKING. Simply breathtaking.



I'm a beach girl through and through, just give me a book, some sun and sand and I'm good to go. This little town was heaven and perfect for 3 relaxing days on our trip. The food was wonderful and our hotel was amazing. Our days consisted mainly of breakfast, lounging in the sun, having dinner, and watching the sun set (while eating gelato of course).









Mike likes the beach too, though welcomed the shade a bit more than I did.

Pisa - a wonder of the world

Pisa was a little pit stop on our way to Vernazza and interesting enough. We took some photos had a picnic and were on our way...





I got a real kick out of all the tourists doing the "holding up the tower" pose. This man particularly was quite enthusiastic.

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Florence - the good stuff

Besides, the initial trouble and a parking ticket in the days to follow...Florence was really beatiful. Lots of art, lots of museums. A lot of what we saw I can't show you because most of the museums don't allow cameras. We saw Michaelangelo's David and the 2 copies through out the city (which I will show you, but they just don't live up to the real thing it was incredible). So without further ado here's Florence...

David number one: this is the copy that stands where the original once did...




Our daily gelato... how I will miss this...


The Ponte Veccio bridge in the background. I highly recommend seeing this at nigth when all the crazy vendors are closed and all that is there are the lust driven locals making out...





Hard to see but this is locals making out...


David number two, a bronze version at Piazza Michaelangelo.. the most beautiful view (see above).



We're now in Vernazza in the Cinque Terre on the coast, also known as my new favourite place in the world. Can't wait to tell you more, but the beach is calling.

Lots of love,
Christine and Michael

Florence - Do not drive here.

Do not drive in Florence. Unfortunately we speak this warning from experience. We knew that driving would be crazy and we had every intention of parking the car and walking Florence. We just didn't realize the parking part would be so hard. Think very small roads, very small cars, very small parking spots...but BIG trees. We had to park in this stall of a major road and had a little trouble navigating the tree...

The death spot:


We're hoping it's something they can "buff right out" but... lessoned learned.



On a happier note, we followed with a shopping day!

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Tuscany - Radda in Chianti

The hills, the hills. They are just beautiful and we definitely did not want to leave after two nights. But we are busy busy honeymooners, with places to go, museums to see... Our hotel in Tuscany was amazing. Tucked away in at the top of the hill away from the village, the hotel was a quiet change of pace from Rome.

The weather unfortunately did not cooperate with reading by the pool, soaking up the sun/view we had planned, but we had a great time anyway. We hopped in our little rental car and braved the VERY treacherous and windy roads and just explored.

Oh and that wonderful cooking class in tuscany we had planned was cancelled... boooo. The chef was "too busy" that day with dinner preparations that he couldnt fit us in. So after I wiped my big pout face off we went to a nearby town and just wandered... yes, more walking. Not that I'm complaining, the walking is definitely welcome after all the delicious food we are eating. SO much wonderful food, sometimes it seems all we do is eat and drink wine... it's a hard life.

Today is Wednesday, June 18 also know as my best friend, Taryn's birthday. Taryn, I hope you had a wonderful birthday week and Mike and I are thinking of you and will be sure to celebrate on your behalf Italy style. Happy belated father's day to the dad's and happy early birthday tomorrow to my Dad! Go golfing (it's thursday after all) and enjoy your day. We love you all lots.

Chat soon!
Christine and Mike

Our Room: