With all due respect to the Eternal City, which I not long ago declared the most satisfying place to visit, nothing compares to La Serenissima in terms of delightful walkability. People who have been to Venice only passingly do not realize that the city is not mostly water. Instead, it is mostly short and narrow streets that challenge your sense of direction, periodically becoming bridges to cross a canal (but sometimes running into a canal without any means to cross it on the spot) and occasionally opening up on lovely squares dominated by churches and palaces. Losing oneself in this maze is what makes time in Venice incomparably charming.
I just spent a week-plus doing exactly that. Of course, there were plentiful breaks for coffee, cicchetti, and Aperol, and some routes were enabled by vaporetti, but first and foremost it was walking. No less than 25,000 steps every day in fact, with a personal best of 33,230 steps on one occasion. Along the way, I stepped into about thirty churches, perused collections of a dozen and a half museums, and ascended several towers and elevated viewpoints. I got lost where I felt like not checking the map, I lingered where I felt like lingering, and along the way firmed up my appreciation for the timeless city that is utterly unique in the known universe.
The couple of thousand photographs that I brought back is actually less than I thought I would end up with. They will have to go through my usual culling and enhancing process before appearing on these pages. I’ll leave you in anticipation with this perspective of the Grand Canal.