I spotted these writing supplies while walking on the Rialto Bridge in Venice. I love the old-world feel to the fountain pens which still need to be dipped into inkwells to keep the ink flowing. Beautiful? Yes. Practical? No, not at all.
Here are a few more photos of Venice.
A hotel on the Grand Canal
Venice at night
The Grand Canal
There are two places I have visited that looked exactly like I imagined in my head. The first was the mountains of Switzerland, and the second are the canals of Venice. The water is a deep emerald, there are quaint wooden and stone bridges linking the many islands together and the city is in a constant battle for survival against the elements.
If you want to get around you either walk or take a boat. It’s the only time in my life that I have taken a boat to the airport and many of the hotels have a dock as the primary entrance. You can easily get lost wondering around the city. In fact getting lost is probably one of the best ways to visit the city. Just wonder around and see the buildings and experience a little of this unique city.
Of all the hotels in Las Vegas, the Venetian is one of the most realistic. You can visit St Mark’s Square, walk over Rialto Bridge, and even stop in a sidewalk café for drink before dinner.
To do something a little different, I am going to post pictures of the real Venice, and the Venetian in Vegas.
Gondola’s in Vegas
Gondola’s in Venice
Just like the real Venice, you can go for a ride on a gondola,and just like in Venice, they are going to charge you for that!
Rialto Brodge, Vegas
There are however a few differences. The Rialto Bridge is a road bridge, and you can ride moving sidewalk up the bridge. And while I can’t confirm it, I suspect that the bridge in Las Vegas is much longer than in Venice.
Rialto Bridge, Venice
The water in Vegas is chlorinated, and it does not stink at low tide (ok, there are no tides in Vegas). And in Vegas St Mark’s Square is indoors, so no getting wet in the pouring rain we experienced last year in Venice.
St Mark’s Square, Vegas. This square is indoors.
St Mark’s Square, Venice
Like most places in Vegas, you probably want to walk through the hotel and perhaps have a drink at one of the café’, and get a break from the chaos and noise of the strip.
Now that we are finally home and (mostly) recovered from our trip, I have managed to get my photos in order, so the next couple of posts are going to be a catch up of the trip. Starting with some of the hotels on the “strip”.
The Strip, or more correctly Las Vegas Boulevard is the main drag in Vegas where everything happens. If you stay in Vegas, you should try to stay on or really close to the strip. Most of the hotels are on the strip, and certainly the big theme hotels are there.
Here are just some of the hotels that I passed on a couple of walks.
Starting with Paris, which contains a scale model of the Eiffel Tower which is approx 1/4 the full height, which is still several stories high. There is a viewing deck on the top level which provides great views of Vegas. Note the traffic at about 10pm on a Sunday night.
Next up is Bally’s, where we stayed. Bally’s is connected to Paris by a short walkway containing a few shops and restaurants. At about $40 per night, Bally’s is one of the cheaper hotels on the strip, but you pay for everything, including $3 per day for the honour of using the hotel safe. But still good value for Vegas.
The Bellagio is across the road from Bally’s, and it contains the famous water fountains, which play in time to music every 1/2 hour or so. The fountains, which shoot higher that the hotel are pretty impressive to watch.
Further down is Caesers palace, which is built to look like ancient Rome, complete with a Colosseum and Pantheon, and “Forum Shops”.
Treasure Island is home to regular evening ship battles as the “Sirens of TI…lure a band of renegade pirates into their cove with powerful and captivating melodies”. The show is a little cheesy, but well it is free.
Last on my list is the Venetian hotel, home to the Blue Man Group, one of my top shows. The entire hotel looks like Venice, complete with St Mark’s Square, the Rialto Bridge, and gondola rides.
Having being in Venice about a year ago, it was remarkable how similar this hotel is to the real thing. Notice how the docking poles are even a little bent, as if they had been in the Grand Canal for a long time.
This is just a selection of the hotels, but you can easily spend day walking around just looking at the hotels.