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March 2010

Spring blossoms in Venice

Spring blossoms in the Rio Terra dei Pensieri  

Spring has been slow in coming to Venice this year, but the weather is gradually turning warmer, and the gelato shops were doing a good business this afternoon.

We grabbed this photo of spring blossoms in the Rio Tera dei Pensieri (near the Piazzale Roma and an excellent small hotel, the Alloggi Marinella, that's convenient if  you're leaving on a cruise or visiting Uncle Vito in the local prison, which is just down the street).


Love padlocks on Venice's bridges

"Love padlocks," a fad that reportedly began in the Hungarian city of Pécs during the 1980s, have been a phenomenon in Italy since 2006, when--according to an archived New York Times story--lovers began chaining padlocks to a bridge in Rome and throwing away the keys after two best-selling novels and a subsequent movie popularized the idea.

The fad has spread to Venice, where padlocks (though blessedly few in number) have been attached to railings on the Ponte dei Scalzi, the Ponte dell'Accademia, and a handful of other bridges. 

If you see padlocks like the ones below when you're in Venice, you can credit--or blame--Federico Moccia, author of Tre Metri Sopra il Cielo (Three Meters Over Heaven) and Ho Voglio di Te (I Want You):

Love padlocks on Ponte dei Scalzi - Venice
Love padlock on Accademia Bridge - Venice


Vaporetto from the Venice Youth Hostel

No 2 vaporetto and Giudecca
ABOVE: A No. 2 vaporetto with the island of Giudecca behind. 

The Venice Hostel or Ostello Venezia is on the island of Giudecca, directly across the Giudecca Canal from Venice's historic center. 

To reach it, you'll need to take a vaporetto or water bus. The fare is a whopping €6,50, although you can reduce the pain with the money-saving Venice Travel Card (or the RollingVENICEcard
available from Hellovenezia offices in Venice, if you're between the ages of 14 and 29).

The video below shows the No. 2 vaporetto, which you'll use to reach major points in Venice's historic center from the hostel. (For more information on water buses, see our Venice Vaporetto Routes article at Venice for Visitors.)

The video begins with the water bus leaving Zittelle, the stop closest to the Ostello Venezia. The hostel, a converted granary, comes into view about 46 seconds into the video. You'll see the camera zoom in to show the sign on the building. 

The boat then continues along the Giudecca waterfront, passes the Redentore church, and reaches the next stop, Redentore, where a sailor lashes the vaporetto to a bollard and passengers disembark.