Venice, Italy – 14:00 to 23:59
An interesting morning today, as our daughter’s almost daily video updates on our grandson’s progress has got us to finally admit we are missing too many milestones. Add to the equation my dad is also coming to Vancouver in September and our son and daughter-in-law are visiting from Dubai, so the magnetic pull of home has finally reached 1/2 way around the world, solidly grabbing our attention. It is something I have been contemplating for a couple of days and when presenting the argument to Judi, it was a very short discussion. To summarise, Aussie touring is cancelled and in Southampton, I will reschedule flights to head home mid-September.
Oh yes, we’re in Venice today and tomorrow.
Temperature: High 22C/72F, Low 20C/68F (Forecast) Actual in Venice was 29 to 30C
Wind/Weather: Lt Airs, Fine & light haze
Clox: Z+2 (no change)
Last night we dropped an engine, reducing speed to 17.5 kts, still maintaining generally NW’ly courses up the Adriatic towards Venice. At 07:30 they dropped another engine and reduced speed to about 14 kts to make the 12:00 ETA at the pilot station. Once the pilot boarded, Sea Princess steered various courses through the lagoon and canals, berthing alongside the commercial port about 14:00.
Venice is located on the NE Italian shoreline in the marshy Venetian Lagoon, between the mouths of the Po and Piave Rivers. It is one of 118 small islands, within the lagoon, which are separated by canals and connected by bridges. The entire city and lagoon is listed as a World Heritage Site, being renowned for the setting, architecture and artwork.
After breakfast we headed up to the Sun Deck sitting in the shade on one of the loungers. This is when we discussed how much we miss our Grandson (Owen) and considered options for an earlier return. Initially considering a short tour of the Gold Coast, returning to Vancouver at the end of October, but then we thought stuff it, that would only prolong the agony, so we both agreed mid-September. This means a week in Sydney, as scheduled, then probably a night at the airport hotel before flying home September 12th. As mentioned previously, when I get some internet access ashore I will make good the cancellations and give British Airways a ring from Southampton to change the flights.
Once that was all agreed, I got to work on some catch-up on photographs and blog posts, as with the flurry of ports I’m a few days behind. About 11:30 we returned the laptop to the cabin, grabbed the cameras and headed to the fwd observation deck on Deck 10, arriving about 15 minutes before the pilot.
Pilot boat approaching Sea Princess.
As we approached the breakwater and entrance to the lagoon I was looking for anything that triggered memories of my previous calls to Venice back in 1976, but alas, absolutely nothing. It was almost as if we were entering a brand new port.
Just passed the pilot buoy looking at the entrance to Venice Lagoon.
Already through the entrance channel and around the first bend, the above shot has Sea Princess following along the coast of Lodi Island, a long narrow island that borders the Venice Lagoon.
Approaching the turn at the end of Lodi Island with lots of marine traffic in the channel and the first glimpse of Venice in the distance.
Heading down the buoyed channel towards Venice.
Approaching the beginning of Venice with Doge’s Palace and St. Mark’s Square on the port bow.
Passing Doge’s Palace and St Mark’s Square with thousands of visitors.
With Doge’s Palace just passed the beam Sea Princess approaches the junction of Giudecca Canal and the Grand Canal. We headed to port along the Giudecca Canal towards the cruise terminal.
Example of one of the many small canals off the Giudecca Canal that head into Venice.
Sea Princess navigating along the Giudecca Canal towards the cruise terminal, which is passed the small ship with blue hull in the background.
An old mill that took 5 years to renovate and is now a Hilton Hotel.
As we pulled into the wharf, Judi & I headed for a quick lunch and then off ashore with friends Bruce and Viv. Princess have arrange a shuttle service from the port to San Marcos, adjacent to the Doge’s Palace. They charge Aus $29, which is good for unlimited numbers of trips to/from Venice over the 2 days. With shuttles departing every 12 mins until about midnight and starting again early in the morning, we think this is an excellent and very convenient service.
I’ll do a separate post to cover our wandering through Venice, but we remained in town until shortly before 21:00, at which time we caught a shuttle back to the ship. A quick dinner in the buffet and off to bed, as we have an early start tomorrow morning.
As another day closes, we bid you farewell, till tomorrow and hope for fair skies and following seas.