In this episode we’re sharing the very best things to do in Venice, Italy! One of the #1 things to do in Venice is to eat all the amazing Italy food, get lost in the alleys, bridges, and waterways, and take in some of the historic UNESCO World Heritage beauties that make up this waterworld town. We also share bonus recommendations for exploring nearby colorful Burano by boat and walking.
Wondering what to do in Venice, Italy? Don’t worry! There are so many things to do on your Venice, Italy travels! Some of the best things to see in Venice Italy include Rialto Bridge, Saint Marks Basilica, St Mark’s Campanile.
Yes, we also did say one of the best things to do in Venice, Italy is to eat. Some of the places we enjoyed and recommend are Chocolate at Nino’s, amazing gelato at Gelatoteco Suso, pasta and pizza at Ristorante Centrale Pizzeria, fresh made fast food pasta at Bigoi, amazing, creative bruschetta at Il Mercante, and tasty vegetable soup at Muro Frari – it’s perfect for rainy days in Venice!
If you only have a short time, that’s ok too. We only spent one night here, but many people take the train in. There are tons of things to see in Venice, Italy in one day. It’s a small, walkable town so if you get in early, and leave later in the day you really can see all the highlights you want. Don’t pass it up!
Burano is technically outside of Venice, but a short water taxi will take you to this colorful dock town – it is worth a visit!
Things to do in Venice, Italy – Episode Transcript
3 (1m 28s):
Welcome to episode 19 of the Travel Squad podcast today, or exploring the famous city of Venice, Italy,
1 (1m 37s):
Venice is an iconic place to visit in Italy with all the beautiful intertwined canals and streets
2 (1m 43s):
Am Jamal. And I have all visited Venice on different trips. So today we are going to tell you about the must knows before you go, how to get to the city and what to do once you’re in the city.
4 (1m 52s):
But before we get started on the episode, we want to give a big shout out to our listeners, Ava and Nora. They are eight and 10 years old. They’ve been listening to our podcasts and have an upcoming trip to China. So Hey, girls, keep traveling. Don’t stop. And thank you for listening.
3 (2m 8s):
You’ve never been to Venice, right?
4 (2m 10s):
I have been to Italy, but never to Venice. So what are some things to know about Venice, top things to know
1 (2m 17s):
The first thing I would say it’s most important for people to know is to understand that there are absolutely no cars whatsoever in Venice. It’s a bunch of islands that are closely compacted with each other. And the only mode of transportation is either to walk or take a water taxi or water bus. Two years locations. There is one spot, only one island of the Venetian islands where you can get to by bus, car taxi, but that’s one of their Northern most islands. And then everywhere else, you’re either going to have to walk or catch a water taxi from there. So be prepared to walk or be prepared to take a water taxi
2 (2m 55s):
And just keep in mind too, that because you can’t go with a car past a point, if you’re staying in the city, whatever luggage you have, you’re going to have to lug that yourself or hire a Porter to lug for you. And Venice is filled not only with streets and canals, but a lot of staircases. And so you’re going up and down these stairs and you’re most likely going to get lost, getting to your hotel. So just be prepared to spend some time with your luggage, hauling it around.
1 (3m 21s):
And a lot of those bridges too, aren’t just, you know, flat arch they’re stared. So if you are carrying your luggage, you really going to have to lift it. Even if you have rollers that does you no good until you’re on a flat surface.
3 (3m 32s):
Yeah. I definitely loved my luggage from the train station to our apartment. We were staying in and it’s kind of a pain, but it’s not that big of a deal, you know, once you get through it. And I think that getting lost in the streets is one of the fun things to do in Venice. The streets are so they’re not like streets that you think of. Typically they’re tiny, the buildings are high, so they’re more like little alleyways and they have no formation, no structure do them. They’re just in and out winding.
1 (3m 59s):
Yeah. It’s not like it’s a grid pattern or anything. They’re all just random.
3 (4m 3s):
Let’s walk and walk and walk. And then all of a sudden you’re in a new section.
4 (4m 7s):
So I have a question for you guys about the water taxis here in the United States, you get an, a taxi and you pay per mileage. You probably even have like a base fare. So how does that work with a water taxi? How do they measure how far they’re taking you?
3 (4m 20s):
The certain stations where you buy your ticket and you tell them where you’re going and they tell you the price. So like, if you’re going out to one of the Bronto Murano islands, you just tell them that. And I think it was seven or 15 euros or more, if you wanted to hit up multiple islands instead of just one.
1 (4m 34s):
Well, are you referencing the water taxi or the water bus Kim? Because there’s two different ones. The taxi is like, you will hear, you know, it’s solo on your own, whereas a bus it’s part of the public transport. So the bus, yeah, taxi wise, to answer your question more directly saying, I don’t know, Brittany, and I didn’t really use it. We took the opportunity to walk it because Venice is very walkable other than the islands that they have no bridges to get to all the close clustered islands. You can walk very easily. So we did that. I would imagine, you know, they just have flat rates that you negotiate with a taxi, but that I don’t know, but I would recommend it flat rate. I would recommend if anyone’s going to take a boat to do the water bus, because it’s cheaper, don’t do a tax that you’re going to pay crazy amounts of money.
1 (5m 16s):
4 (5m 16s):
What else should you know about Venice?
1 (5m 18s):
I learned this on the last day, and this is kind of something more random and more touristy than about Venus itself. But Brittany and I love to send postcards to ourselves from the places that we visit. We love to ride in on them and send it to us and look forward to receiving them when we get home. And when we were in Venice, we picked up the postcard. We asked the vendor, if he sold a stamp, he said, yes, I do. It costs this much. I forgot how much,
2 (5m 42s):
$2 and 50 Euro cents.
1 (5m 44s):
So quite expensive for an international stamp. But I was like, okay, you know, it’s part of the experience. I want to send it to myself. And then he said, just be sure to put it in the mailbox. That’s right outside my shop. And I didn’t think much of it because I was thinking to myself, okay, well, he’s probably just telling me there’s a mailbox there. I saw a mailbox by my hotel. I’ll be just fine. And then as we’re putting on the stamp after Brittany and I have written in it to drop off the morning, we’re actually leaving to the airport. I look at it and I realized this is stamp is kind of funny. And then I did some research and apparently in Venice and in more touristy cities in Italy, they have a private postage service. So if you buy the private postage service stamp, you can’t put it in the regular postal service that Italy utilizes, nor will it transfer to any American or other country ones in that sort of way.
1 (6m 33s):
It’s a private delivery service. And so I couldn’t find a mailbox for it that was close enough to our hotel. By the time we had to leave because we’re going to the airport. So Brittany and I just carried it with us and I lost two 50 Euro
4 (6m 47s):
At least got to stay up. Yeah.
1 (6m 49s):
I think came out a story. She’d mentioned about it, where she bought the private one and actually put it in the right box. And you got it though. Correct?
3 (6m 54s):
I sent it to a family member, but yeah,
4 (6m 56s):
It did come.
3 (6m 57s):
1 (6m 58s):
Cause see, cause I read a lot or a view saying that it definitely didn’t come for that
3 (7m 2s):
Part of the experience,
1 (7m 3s):
I guess it is hit or miss and Brittany and I are still waiting on a postcard from our Adriatic vacation that we took. So
4 (7m 11s):
You forget your postcard from Mexico. The first time we went in 2016. No, no. Oh, I got mine. It’s so interesting. Cause we all dropped our postcards off at the exact same place.
1 (7m 20s):
Yeah. I guess even with regular stamps, it’s hit or miss, but for the most part, you know, with this one, it just took me by surprise. So point being, if you do buy the private one, just be sure you’re actually putting it in the correct mailbox because the Italian government post office or postal service, they’re not going to do you the courtesy to make sure it gets into the private company’s hands. They’re just going to toss that. So be mindful.
3 (7m 40s):
Another thing that’s really unique about Venice because there are so many canals and waterways, the city’s really built on the water. And so I remember watching a documentary years ago about how Venice floods, certain times of year. And it really gets into the shops and it’s like inches or feet of water in the shops. It damages them and it’s becoming an issue and they’re trying to create some engineering that will offset it. So I remember hearing about this, but I didn’t think that I was there and the time of year that it happened, but I happened to be there in April this year and it was raining and the water levels did rise to the point where it was flooding into the streets. And then when that happens, the shop owner shut down and they closed their doors.
3 (8m 22s):
So you’ll be walking through the streets and it looks very deserted. Wow. And it’s, you can’t even tell there’s a shop there because it just looks like a wall.
2 (8m 28s):
How much water was flooding the street? It
3 (8m 31s):
Wasn’t that bad. It was raining very hard, but the water was just kind of like lapping up onto the cement, but it wasn’t like getting into shops or anything. But I think they definitely closed as a precaution because it is known to damage the property.
1 (8m 44s):
You’re lucky because I remember seeing earlier this year too, when they were having a lot of floods during their rainy season, it was actually knee high. So they would show tourists walking there, knee high floods. Yeah.
2 (8m 58s):
4 (8m 59s):
I know. Well what about your hotel? Your hotel must be pretty high then it’s not being affected.
3 (9m 3s):
I stayed in an apartment that I rented through Expedia and it was on the ground floor, but it was okay.
2 (9m 10s):
And for our hotel, the ground floor was just the reception area. All of the rooms were higher up. So
1 (9m 15s):
If it floods, you’re still at any level, I guess.
4 (9m 18s):
2 (9m 18s):
You go. Another thing to know for Venice is you’re going to be walking around quite a bit. And if you get really thirsty, bring your water bottle, there are fountains throughout the entire city and you can fill up your water bottle with water from the fountain and it’s perfectly safe to drink.
4 (9m 32s):
So that being said, how did you get into the city? Where did you guys come from to get to Venice?
3 (9m 37s):
I was on a 10 day trip throughout Italy. And so I was coming from Florence. I took the train and it was really weird when I bought the train ticket online because there was like a stop two stops before Venice. And I was supposed to get off that train and get on another one that went to Venice. But we were kind of like lagging a little bit. And the guy was like, oh, just stay on. Cause it didn’t make any sense to get off when that train was going to Venice itself. So we got a first-class train the whole way there.
2 (10m 1s):
Did you pay extra for that?
3 (10m 2s):
We did not.
2 (10m 3s):
3 (10m 4s):
Yes. Score big time. Fucking them hard. But we got back to the train station and then just walk to our apartment using Google maps, kind of like weaving in and out of the alleys.
2 (10m 16s):
Very nice Jamal and I arrived to Venice a little bit differently. This was our last day from our Adriatic coast vacation. And since the tour company that we used was flying everyone out of the Venice airport. We use that transportation from them to get to Venice airport. And from there we took a bus into the city.
1 (10m 34s):
Yeah. So Brittany and I didn’t just go to Italy to go to Italy. And then Venice was one of them. It was a tail end of our last vacation that we did. So we figured might as well utilize the opportunity we’re here, let’s experience Venice. And so since they dropped us off at the airport, cause everybody else on our tour was flying home. We had to be on our own to get from the airport to Venice. And it’s actually really, really close by bus. It takes 20 minutes. I’m Brittany and I took a specific bus. We actually took the a T V O express bus, which is a private bus company. And it costs eight euros. One way to get to the Piazza LA Roma, which is the only place that I told you earlier on, that you can actually get to by vehicle.
1 (11m 19s):
So bus, car taxi, and it’s that main Northern island. And from there, wherever you go, you’re either going to have to walk or take a water taxi or bus. And we were able to purchase the tickets for that bus at the airport. And if you want it round trip, it costs 15 euros. So you’d save a dollar if you bought it all at the same time versus eight euros to get there eight euros back and the bus runs every 20 minutes. So I think this is the best option to get to Venice, especially if you’re flying it.
2 (11m 48s):
And we arrived in Venice at about 8:00 AM. We had actually left Slovenia around 3:30 AM I slept on the bus? I don’t know if Jamal did or not. We got to the airport and had a little bit of downtime before our bus took us to where they could drop us off in Venice. And so we got to the city right around 8:00 AM and not much was open yet. So it was really nice to see the shops and the streets kind of deserted and empty because we were able to roam around freely. And then we just went to our hotel real quick and dropped off her luggage. And we’re able to go around from there.
1 (12m 21s):
Yeah. There are a couple other ways that you can get there though. I just want to go over. Kim came in via train. There is only one train station into Venice and it is in that same area of the Piatsa LA Roma that I mentioned. So when, where we got landed with the bus, you just cross over one bridge and the train station is right there. Otherwise from the airport, you can also take a private water taxi, which is going to be really expensive. Again, we didn’t utilize that. I’ve read online that those can cost up to a hundred euros. Believe it or not, or they have the water bus and in Venice, just so you guys are aware, water buses are called VAT Barreto’s so you can catch a from the airport. And those roughly cost about 15 euros, but they may not take you directly to your hotel.
1 (13m 6s):
Again, it is a bus, even though it has a boat. So they have specific stations. So you still may be having to walk far.
2 (13m 12s):
Kim, when you went to Venice, when you left, did you fly out of the Venice airport or did you take the bus somewhere else to go to another place in Italy?
3 (13m 21s):
That was our last stop. And so we did go to the Marco polo airport and fly out.
2 (13m 25s):
How did you get there? We
3 (13m 26s):
Purchased a ticket off of one of these cart vendors for the bus and then got on the bus and went to the airport, super simple, to get a ticket and arrange any type of transportation
2 (13m 37s):
For Jamal. And I, we had a 6:00 AM flight out of Venice. And so there were no buses or trains to the airport at that hour because we needed to leave at like 3 34 to catch our flight. And so we had to rearrange for a taxi to pick us up and because it was after hours, they charged us $50 just to get from Venice to the Venice airport. Oh,
3 (13m 59s):
You guys got fucked hard.
1 (14m 0s):
Yeah we did. But unfortunately that was our flight time. So if you want to avoid that and take the cheaper ways to get back to the airport, if you can, you know, make sure that your flight is a little bit later in the day, Brittany is in the eyes was so early. That again, there was just no mass transportation that you can take. We had to arrange for private arrangements with the taxi
4 (14m 20s):
That’s $50 or 50 euros,
2 (14m 23s):
4 (14m 23s):
Euros. So they fucked you even
1 (14m 24s):
Harder. Yeah. Like $55. I know.
2 (14m 30s):
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4 (15m 44s):
So what is there to do in the city besides just like walking around,
3 (15m 48s):
Walking around is one of the coolest things to do in Venice. Like I said, the streets, the alleyways, they’re just so cool and very old. So I don’t know. I get, I get off on old buildings and they’re really cool.
1 (16m 3s):
2 (16m 3s):
3 (16m 4s):
Love me some older men
4 (16m 6s):
When we were in Cuba. And your fortune was that I was going to introduce you to an older man and
3 (16m 10s):
Still waiting on that. I
4 (16m 11s):
Know if there are any men who were in like the forties and they’re interested in Kim hit me up because the prophecy is I’m going to introduce you to Kim and you’re going to get married. So I help assist her out.
1 (16m 22s):
But other than older buildings getting a go on, Kim,
3 (16m 26s):
Those are really cool. There’s just waterways everywhere. And so everywhere, you’re going to want to take pictures and you just wind in and out, and then it’ll open up into a square there’s shops. You think you’re going down like a deserted alley and then boom. There’s like people in shops and restaurants. And it’s just so cool. I love that.
2 (16m 41s):
You really can’t go wrong no matter where you go. Even if you get lost, you’re going to find your way and it’s going to take some time, but it’s so beautiful exploring. And just finding your way naturally.
1 (16m 49s):
I will say this, even though there are obviously some of the passageways and streets, if you will, are wider, a lot of them are narrow, but nonetheless, they have a lot of signs that will tell you, oh, a major attraction, you know, like the Rialto Bridge, Saint Marks square, and they’ll have an arrow pointing you in the general direction because the buildings they’re not skyscrapers, but they are high. So you just really don’t have a lay of the land of where you’re going. So those signs really help. So if you do get lost, take it in stride because Venice is meant to be explored in that way. And that’s half of the fun, but beyond just walking the streets, there is a lot of history in the city and that’s where there is a lot of things to do. For example, St.
1 (17m 30s):
Mark square is one of the main tourist attractions in Venice and within St. Mark square, there are several things for you to do that. We’re going to go over. One of them is the doge palace, which is the former Supreme authority of Venice’s Republic. That was their version of their presidential palace. If you will, I would equate the doge to their president.
3 (17m 52s):
I love the way you say that Dodge.
1 (17m 54s):
I had to Google it to make sure I was saying it correct. It’s
4 (17m 60s):
Okay. All guys altogether. 1, 2, 3 dope shit. Yes.
1 (18m 3s):
So the dojo is former palace has been turned into a museum and it’s actually built in the Venetian Gothic style architecture. It’s really cool to see the outside of it. We didn’t go in, they do charge an entrance fee to do that, but in St. Mark square, they also have St. Mark’s Basilica, which is a free to do. And Brittany and I partook in that.
3 (18m 26s):
It’s a beautiful building.
2 (18m 27s):
Yeah. I actually didn’t know it was free until I looked it up online and I was like, free entrance. Count me in.
3 (18m 33s):
I didn’t, I think it was closed. We got there kind of late and then it was raining. So we didn’t end up doing it. But just the building itself, we took tons of pictures of it in front of it. It’s so pretty.
4 (18m 43s):
So you dodged the doge?
3 (18m 46s):
No, that wasn’t the dojo St. Mark’s Basilica.
4 (18m 49s):
Just kidding. Sorry.
3 (18m 49s):
But you know, those buildings just get me going. I couldn’t even go in. I was obsessed.
1 (18m 53s):
Well, they are right by each other. So she dodged the doge to take the photo in front of the Basilica.
4 (19m 1s):
Sorry guys. I couldn’t.
1 (19m 2s):
No, but I mean, if you thought the outside was really pretty, I mean, you should’ve seen the inside. It’s unfortunate that you didn’t get to go in. So there is a bit of a line. It moves quick. If you don’t pay for a private tour, which you can actually do. And from what I saw online, they’re not very expensive, but your tour guide, it’s going to be maybe 15, 20 minutes. We’ll give you more of the history of what’s going on on the inside. Nothing you can’t read about later, but if you do it on your own, they walk you in a specific one-way paths, really compact and crowded. But if you can get past that, just to see the inside, it’s amazing.
2 (19m 34s):
Yeah. So I have a few things I want to share about going inside the St. Mark’s Basilica. So first of all, it’s a Catholic church and it’s still running services and they ask you to dress modestly where
3 (19m 44s):
You dress modestly. I
2 (19m 46s):
3 (19m 49s):
2 (19m 50s):
4 (19m 51s):
What were you wearing?
2 (19m 52s):
I was wearing a romper and a, it was a short, like squirt looking romper and it had a little bit of cleavage too. So a little
4 (20m 2s):
Bit, a lot
2 (20m 2s):
Of it. Okay. Maybe a lot of bit.
3 (20m 5s):
Yeah, probably a lot.
2 (20m 6s):
So Jamal and I were in line and as we are approaching, entering the building, there are these signs and they show you that your dressing has to be down to your knees, that you can’t be showing cleavage. You know, you can’t be wearing a spaghetti strap, so you need to be covered up. So I was trying to almost hide behind Jamal to see if we could sneak in, but they had multiple areas of people checking you. And we got by the first
3 (20m 29s):
2 (20m 30s):
Yeah. And the second guy caught me and was like, you .
1 (20m 35s):
So like Brittany said, we saw the signs. And then as we got closer, we saw, you know, the checkpoint where they have the person looking at you to make sure you are dressed modestly appropriately. And then we saw somebody get turned around and say, oh no, no, you can’t go in like this. And I was like, pretty. I want to get in, you know, we waited in line, let me try to hide you to the side. So we did, as Brittany said, get her past the first person, but the second person ended up catching her, even though I was trying to stand in front, block her, go in with the crowd, he saw it. And so
2 (21m 7s):
Then they do sell covers though. You can buy a cover for two euros. So we were like, you know what? We already made it this far. It’s only two euros. I’m just going to go ahead and buy one, put it on and do the tour. The other thing that I want you guys to know is that even though the entrance is free, there’s is a one-way pathway, but there are parts where you can diverge off and look at something extra. And for those extra parts, you do have to pay an additional fee. If you want to go view those parts
3 (21m 32s):
Serious to see anything extra,
2 (21m 33s):
We did not
4 (21m 34s):
Serious question for you. If you had been turned away, Brittany, Jamal, would you have gone on without her, like you would have on the Inca trail?
1 (21m 42s):
No, because when you are going to go back to the hotel and I would have just had her change and we would have gone back and done it probably it’s true. Love. Yeah. I wouldn’t want to go on alone, honestly. I mean, I caught a peek of the inside from the point where he almost turned Brittany away, but once you’re inside, it’s so beautiful in there. I was just so impressed with the ceilings because in a lot of churches, especially classical churches and specifically in Italy, there’s a lot of frescoes paintings on there. And I know when you went to Venice came, it was part of your Italy trip. And you saw the Sistine chapel when you were at the Vatican and that that’s a fresco, it’s a painting
3 (22m 20s):
Paintings on every square inch of the walls and ceilings,
1 (22m 23s):
Not in St. Mark’s Basilica though. It’s all mosaics, all golden mosaics.
4 (22m 29s):
It’s fresco us style.
1 (22m 31s):
4 (22m 32s):
All I know is Fresca cheese, fresco, fresco
3 (22m 35s):
Similar, but different.
1 (22m 37s):
It’s not a cheese though is Ana it’s a painting. Yes. And so, you know, when you go into churches, you see paintings on the ceiling, on the walls, those are called frescoes. So in St. Mark’s Basilica, they don’t have frescoes. They have all mosaics on the ceiling and they’re all golden. And it was just really beautiful to be seen. And I actually read a little bit later, and I didn’t realize this, that one of the main reasons why St. Mark’s Basilica cap with the mosaics versus going to the frescoes that you see in a lot of other Italian churches from that period is because in Morano, which is a Venetian island, they’re famous for their glass blowing and to help stabilize and keep that industry going they created or made the tiles that they used in the mosaics themselves.
1 (23m 20s):
So that’s one of the reasons why they never did the transition to frescoes, but I just can’t even describe how beautiful those golden mosaics were on the ceiling. It was just amazing to them.
2 (23m 29s):
It was a sight to see definitely. I just couldn’t believe there is no blink space. There’s just scenes everywhere made out of the mosaics. I mean, that takes a lot of thought and engineering just on the creativity portion of it.
1 (23m 42s):
I was reading afterwards that it took centuries to make, so obviously they didn’t do it all at one time, but little by little. So it took, you know, over 500 years for them to just even finish the mosaics that are on top
4 (23m 54s):
Tux for the guy who had the idea who never got to see it finished through
1 (23m 59s):
Portion finished, I guess
3 (24m 1s):
It’s the journey, not the destination. It’s so
4 (24m 3s):
True. So is there any scene specifically on this helium that you just absolutely love?
1 (24m 9s):
Well, we didn’t do the tour, so I don’t know what was, what seen, I think some of the writing and there was definitely in Latin too, which I don’t understand. So, you know, if someone, and I’m interested in history myself, but if someone’s more interested in it and maybe who’ve them to pay, you know, the 10 to 15 euros to get somebody to give you the guided tour. And I’m sure they could explain that for you, but not one in particular stood out to me, but I was impressed by everything as a whole
3 (24m 33s):
Right across from St. Mark’s Basilica is another building it’s very, very tall, over 300 feet tall. It’s St. Mark’s company. I think that’s how you pronounce it in Italian. So it’s a very tall bell tower and it was built in 1912 after the tower actually collapsed in 1902. So what you can do is stand in the short line to go up to the top of it. You can also buy tickets in advance online and skip the line if you’re interested in doing that. But we ended up waiting in the line. It took about 15 minutes. I think it was about eight euros to get in. So not expensive, but I highly recommend it because when you’re at the top, you can see all the Venice, the waterways, the islands, it’s super pretty.
1 (25m 13s):
It is the tallest structure in Venice, that tower. Yeah,
3 (25m 15s):
It’s super tall. And there’s these beautiful bells at the top. And when we were at the top, they actually run.
1 (25m 21s):
So it was,
3 (25m 22s):
It was very loud, but it was really cool. And I have a video of it and I’ll post on our Instagram when this episode goes up. But also guess what’s at the top, a phone booth. And I got a picture in it. You know, I did
1 (25m 34s):
Phone booth. Oh, wow. Brittany and I surprisingly, because you could take the stairs all the way at the top. You know, Brittany loves easy days. I am so shocked. She didn’t tell me to do this. I don’t know if in the moment we were just at the tail end of our vacation that we did. And again, we extended on for Venice and we were tired. I don’t know if we were feeling cheap and didn’t want to pay for it, but we didn’t do it. Which again, surprises me since we like to hike and do little things.
3 (25m 57s):
I did it. We took an elevator just for you guys to know out there, you don’t have to climb the stairs.
1 (26m 2s):
There was an elevator,
3 (26m 4s):
There was nobody climbing up the stairs we
4 (26m 6s):
3 (26m 7s):
Could have actually, or maybe we just were like, hell no, but,
1 (26m 10s):
And nonetheless, I would still like to go to the top, but like you said, it collapsed in 1902 was rebuilt in 1912. But afterwards I just did a little bit of research and history on it. You know, I, sometimes I like to do this before the trip sometimes I’ll do it afterwards. But I found out that that tower was rebuilt and remodeled so many times because it was prone to lightning strikes, which would catch it on fire. So they would always have to rebuild it. But this last time that they rebuilt it in 1912 was because the tower collapsed because it had a crack running down the side.
4 (26m 41s):
So we know that we didn’t go up
2 (26m 43s):
That tower. But what we did do instead was Jamal asked me on a date while we were in Venice. Oh
1 (26m 50s):
2 (26m 51s):
So we went and crossed the Rialto Bridge and the Rialto Bridge is the oldest of the four bridges that span the grand canal. And we talked about small canals in the street ways. The grand canal is
3 (27m 1s):
2 (27m 2s):
It is grand
1 (27m 4s):
2 (27m 5s):
And it’s a super popular place to cross and just look out at, and there’s a lot of shops lining my area. So Jamal took me to a coffee shop and we went on a cute date sitting next to the Rialto Bridge, looking out onto the grand canal. She
4 (27m 21s):
Guys get nervous like butterfly nervous.
1 (27m 23s):
No, not really.
3 (27m 26s):
She going to like me.
1 (27m 28s):
No, but the reality bridge is an iconic photo spot in Venice. So I recommend to anybody, if you are going to go get there early, before the crowds get there, and you have people in your photos, because it’s really pretty to just see the shops lining the canal, the buildings on the side. So everyone goes there. This is their most famous bridge within Venice. And so we were fortunate enough when we were there. It wasn’t too, too crowded yet. And we were able to get a nice solo photo on a Brittany. But by the time we were done taking photos of her and it was my turn, people started to come in and get on the side. So I have people in my photos and yeah, I know. I know. But Brittany’s photo is the most important, I guess.
1 (28m 9s):
3 (28m 10s):
Spoken like a true Instagram husband.
4 (28m 12s):
So apart from Venice, you said that there’s other surrounding islands. So can you guys talk more about that? Did you guys go explore?
1 (28m 20s):
Well, they are part of Venus. They just are further away and not connected by a bridge for it to be walkable. So I just want to articulate that to our listeners, that they are part of Venice, but no, Brittany and I did not go to any of those islands. Unfortunately
3 (28m 34s):
I did. And when I was doing my research about Venice, I came upon island called Bronto. And it’s known for having these gorgeous, bright colored houses, lining the canals. And it’s so pretty. So that was one thing I had to do. And so we took a Pareto. We bought our ticket, got on. It was pouring rain this day. So we were completely drenched. I had an umbrella. The person I was with did not boo-hoo, but when we were completely drenched our feet, our clothes, our pants, everything, but I still needed to see it. So even though it was pouring down rain, it was so pretty. And we would have went to some of the other islands Murano’s known for their glass blowing, but you can find blown glass all over Venice. You don’t have to go to Marrano to see it.
3 (29m 15s):
But I highly recommend Borana. Even if it’s raining, it’s so pretty. I’ll put some pictures of the houses so you can see them. But definitely check that out. If you can, did
4 (29m 23s):
You bring your umbrella?
3 (29m 24s):
I had an umbrella. Yeah. I brought it and I knew it was going to be raining. So I
4 (29m 28s):
Never bring an umbrella.
3 (29m 29s):
Well, I was pre-planned see, I plan. Yeah.
1 (29m 32s):
Well we all know Zane is not a pre-plant or when it comes to packing. So
4 (29m 36s):
Did you buy this on Barilla?
3 (29m 37s):
They do have umbrellas for sale there. It rains a lot. And so what’s also interesting is that everyone has umbrella. So you’re going through these tiny alleyways and you have to like, raise your umbrella and move it to the side. You kind of just like wind in between people with umbrellas. Oh, that’s cute. Highly recommend. Borana
4 (29m 51s):
Okay. Now that we’ve walked all around the city, you’ve definitely built up my appetite. So where can we go to eat
3 (29m 58s):
And Italy in general, you just eat, eat, eat, eat, drink, eat, walk around, eat more.
1 (30m 3s):
Kim’s not on her low carb diets when she’s in Italy. I don’t imagine.
3 (30m 7s):
Absolutely not. And one of the favorite places that I ate in Venice was a place called Bigoi and it attracts you because they’re making fresh pasta right in front of you. It’s all like a spaghetti type of pasta, but like thicker. I’m not sure what the noodles called
1 (30m 21s):
Linguini or fettuccine
3 (30m 23s):
1 (30m 25s):
Okay. Okay. So it’s actually rounded. It’s not like a flower. Okay. Cause when he said spaghetti, I was just thinking long noodle, but I see what you’re saying. Yeah.
3 (30m 31s):
And they’re making it fresh right in front of you. And so there you get your Pasta and then you pick what kind of sauce or meat that you want on it. So you kind of make it your own. And we got a pesto pasta and it was so good. Oh my God loved it.
2 (30m 45s):
Was it like a fast food restaurant? It was,
3 (30m 48s):
Yeah. You would just walk in and order it from the counter and then you could sit down or take it away.
1 (30m 51s):
Yeah, it sounds really good. Actually. I’m disappointed. You didn’t give us that little pro tip since you were in Venice before us.
3 (30m 56s):
I know. And it was
1 (30m 57s):
Cheap. That’s always good. Because one thing I want to say is Venice is an expensive city. So the place that Brittany and I went to to have a sit down meal was recommended to me by my friend and dentist. He was in Venice and he told me about it. And he said a lot of the places he ate in Venice, he wasn’t necessarily too impressed. Cause other places in Italy have better Italian food. That was his impression that he gave me. But he said for what this restaurant was where Brittany and I went, which was called . He said that it was inexpensive and the food quality was pretty good. And I would have to agree on that. Did I love it? No, but for how much we saw everything else marked up in Venice for an actual sit-down restaurant, not fast food, kind of like how you had Kim.
1 (31m 42s):
It was really good. Brittany and I got a pizza that we split. We got a burrata cheese plate as well. That was really, really good and very inexpensive. I think the pizza was maybe about what 12 euros wasn’t that.
2 (31m 55s):
3 (31m 55s):
Most of the, I think every restaurant pretty much has their menu outside of the door. So you can browse around and keep looking at the prices. Most of the menus are very similar. So if you’re looking for a good price, just keep walking and is pretty good for Venice prices.
1 (32m 11s):
Oh yeah. I mean, I saw a lot of other ones that were like 20 year olds. Yeah. 16,
3 (32m 16s):
4 (32m 17s):
That’s crazy. Cause pasta is so cheap to mate and to purchase
1 (32m 20s):
Depends on the sauce. Depends on what they put on it, I guess. But again, it’s Italy, it’s a touristy city. So they have a markup. And if you eat anywhere close to St. Mark square, which is the main tourist attraction and Venice expect to pay a lot, lot more.
3 (32m 35s):
One of the other places that I ate in Venice was a place called IL Mercante. And it was a place that we stumbled on when we were walking from the train to our apartment and it’s right along one of the canals, they have outdoor seating. So that’s kind of what attracted us
1 (32m 49s):
Main canal. No,
3 (32m 50s):
Another side one. But I saw somebody eating a plate of bruschetta bomb, bruschetta. It was like all these different toppings, cute little pieces. And I saw that and I was like, we’re eating here and you go in and you can pick all of the different bruschetta’s that they have get a glass of wine, sit by the canal and watch the boats go by. And the people go by. I highly recommend it because when we were there, like I said, it was raining and a lot of places were shut down. We kind of went back to the same spot. This is near where we were staying and there’s a place called Moreau Ferrari, something like that. And it’s right next door to IL Mercante. And it’s just like a casual, cute little coffee shop that has drinks and little slider sandwiches. But the minestrone soup, which if you did not know, like I did not minestrone soup in the U S is not the same as it is in Italy.
3 (33m 35s):
In Italy, it’s essentially veggie soup. You will not get pasta or beans in it, but this place had a bomb veggie soup. It was so good. And it was perfect cause it was raining and cold,
2 (33m 43s):
Delicious. While we were in Venice, it was very, very hot. And I really wanted to have gelato. I kept telling Jamal, I can’t wait to have gelato in Venice. It’s going to be so good.
1 (33m 53s):
And there’s tons of gelato shops lining the streets.
2 (33m 56s):
So while we were walking around, we just kept scoping out gelato shop after gelato shop. And I had done some research on one of the more famous ones and it was called Gelatoteco Suso and we actually went by it originally and we just took a peep in. We weren’t too impressed,
1 (34m 11s):
Big line already though, when we even peeped it, there was already a big line. We saw the gelatos that they had in the display and it looked good, just their flavors and how they were describing it. Didn’t look really as good as some of the other ones that we saw, interestingly enough,
2 (34m 26s):
But we went back to it and decided to try it. And there was a huge line when we got there, the line was out the door and we ended up getting both of us, a double scoop of cheesecake and one that was described like a Snickers bar. Oh my God. It was so good. It was the best gelato I’ve ever had.
1 (34m 45s):
The best gelato. You
4 (34m 47s):
Said you weren’t impressed.
2 (34m 49s):
We weren’t impressed with what the flavors were described like
4 (34m 52s):
Oh, okay. Gotcha. Okay.
2 (34m 53s):
Yeah. But once we went back and looked again and we’re like, okay, let’s try it. And the cheat, we got some premium scoops. So the cheesecake gelato had Graham cracker, crumbles and crust in it.
1 (35m 5s):
Pieces of cheesecake itself. It was so, so good.
4 (35m 11s):
Normally I just go for pistachio, but,
2 (35m 15s):
And if you guys didn’t know, I do have a really big sweet tooth. And while we were getting lost in the canals, in the streets, Jamal and I stumbled upon a chocolate shop and they had chocolate fountains in their windows and that’s what really intrigued us to go in. What was it called? It was called Nino’s. And so we went inside Nina’s and they just kept offering us sample after sample of like chocolate covered nuts chocolate.
3 (35m 38s):
Oh, you insist? I guess.
2 (35m 40s):
Yes we take
4 (35m 41s):
1 (35m 45s):
2 (35m 45s):
So it was really good, but we would ask to look at something and then they would offer us another sample. And so they just kept offering a sample after
3 (35m 53s):
Stage. You buy anything.
2 (35m 54s):
So we did, we ended up buying these chocolate covered almonds that were flavored like lemon.
4 (36m 1s):
Ooh, did you guys buy it because you felt guilty cause you ate so many samples.
1 (36m 5s):
We added it because they were so good when they give us the samples. Like I’m so stoked that Brittany and I walked out with as little as we did, considering how good we thought everything else was that they gave us for sample. Cause I could have gotten pretty much everything they gave me a sample of.
2 (36m 20s):
And then we also bought the youth like shortbread cookies. Would this lemon cream filling? Oh
4 (36m 24s):
1 (36m 25s):
It had like a lemon curd cream filling into it. Yeah, it was so good. It is a little bit more on the expensive side. I won’t deny that. And when we came home and finally ate those and by home, I don’t mean into the hotel. We were staying, we really brought them home back to the United States with us still so good. Don’t regret purchasing it, but I won’t lie. They definitely don’t give you a lot of it in the package size, but it’s still fun novelty to bring back and to have. And they’re really, really good. So if you’re walking the streets and you see a Nino’s and there’s more than one, Nino’s definitely go in and try some samples. It can hold off your hunger for a little bit until you find something else now and tell
4 (37m 7s):
Them the Travel Squad St. You
3 (37m 10s):
Name it Venice.
1 (37m 11s):
But we’re talking about the, you know, some sit down restaurants, there’s a lot of just walk by, pick up as you go to go food from vendors, selling just pizza slices or sweets that are canolas or things of that nature. So there’s definitely a lot of food. So don’t jump the gun and get something right away, like
3 (37m 31s):
Get something and then get more.
1 (37m 32s):
That’s true. Depends on how much you want to eat. But if you’re looking for a more sit down, like Kim said, they have the menus out in front of all the sit-downs just scope it out, see what you’d like and come back. Cause you can definitely have a little snack walking along the way, real easy.
3 (37m 47s):
And some other things to know about eating and Venice. If you’re at a restaurant you don’t tip tips already included. So you don’t need to tip. Also they will normally add on, I think it’s, something like it’s pronounced something like that, but it’s basically like a little service fee. If they bring you out bread, it usually covers that. And a lot of places will just add this on. So if you see that on your receipt, don’t be surprised. That’s pretty standard.
1 (38m 9s):
Good, good point. I forgot to actually mention that. Cause he touched on two things that I wanted to say about the food. So yes, some restaurants do have service fees where the tip is included, but that’s a unique thing in the tourist areas. Cause tipping isn’t customary in Italy. So just because there’s a lot of tourists, they’ll add it on there. So you’re not
3 (38m 28s):
Certainly appreciate it. If you do tip, you’re welcome to, but it’s not expected.
1 (38m 31s):
Right? And so some restaurants will actually advertise that there is no service charge. We saw several of them doing that. But the menu will say usually if there is a service charge, but on that side note about the bread coming to the table, you’re very correct. Even if there isn’t a service charge in some restaurants, I’ve seen it where they’ll bring the bread without asking, but they charge for it. And it’s usually like a Euro or two and
3 (38m 55s):
1 (38m 56s):
It’s not expensive. And if you don’t know it, you know, when you see it on the bill, it’s going to be a little bit of shock, but that’s just how they do things over there. So don’t be surprised. Don’t complain. Don’t look like that. Pesky American. You’re not going to fight that charge. So just accept it and break it.
3 (39m 10s):
I can tell them to take the bread back if you really don’t want it or you’re not going to eat it or whatever. Another thing that you should definitely have in Venice is the house wine. Get a leader of house wine and really go for it. It’s cheap. It’s usually I think in Venice, the cheapest I’ve found was probably 12 euros, but in other parts of Italy you can get it even cheaper and it’s delicious house wine. It’s amazing. I love it. Definitely go for it. I would recommend the house wine instead of like a bottle because whereas the house wine for a liter will be about 12 year-olds. The bottles could be in the thirties or forties. One last thing though, when I was leaving Italy, I stopped at this little cart place and there’s a lot of them. So you can pick any one of them, but you should also get an .
3 (39m 53s):
Have you guys had one before? No. Oh
1 (39m 55s):
3 (39m 57s):
Oh my God. Okay. So it’s a scoop of gelato with espresso poured over it and it is so bomb. It’s simple, but it’s delicious.
1 (40m 5s):
Does the espresso melt the gelato then?
3 (40m 7s):
Just the perfect amount. Okay.
1 (40m 10s):
Interesting. I am really glad I didn’t try it.
3 (40m 12s):
We can get them in America too. So that lost.
4 (40m 17s):
Okay guys. So we’ve walked all around Italy. You’ve taken us out to eat. Now. I need to go home and rest and then button my pants. Where are we going?
1 (40m 24s):
Well, Brittany and I actually stayed at a very inexpensive hotel. I don’t know if this is the standard for all hotels in Venice because hotels in Venice are expensive. So Brittany and I didn’t really want to pay a lot. We were only going to be there the one day
4 (40m 40s):
It’s expensive. What price ranges are you talking about?
1 (40m 43s):
Oh, they could easily be 250 euros a night
3 (40m 46s):
For my whole Italy. And this was the most expensive one and the hotels were not that great. Right?
2 (40m 52s):
Yeah. When I was looking on Expedia to book the trip, a lot of it looked like either apartment homes or hotels that really didn’t offer a lot or that didn’t really speak to me. And I finally just
4 (41m 4s):
2 (41m 5s):
Latin, but I finally did find one that looked, you know, decent enough and it was called hotel Mauro, Dave Anita.
3 (41m 13s):
Oh, that’s so funny. I looked at that one too.
2 (41m 16s):
And so they did have breakfast. Unfortunately, our flight was so early. We didn’t get to enjoy the free breakfast that they offered, but they did have free breakfast. And what was really nice about it. It was very close to where the taxis can drop you off and pick you up
1 (41m 31s):
2 (41m 32s):
So we didn’t have far to walk with our luggage. And so that ended up being really nice.
1 (41m 37s):
That’s specifically why we booked that spot was price point. And we knew we had an early flight. There was no mass transportation. That’s the only place for cars. So we knew we could easily walk there with our luggage and catch a taxi, which is what we did.
4 (41m 51s):
You know, what I love about you, Jamal is you constantly try to do the accent. Like, I don’t know if you noticed, but earlier you said pizza, the water tacky.
1 (41m 59s):
3 (41m 60s):
I love the way Italian people talk. Even when they’re speaking English, they still pronounce things as you do in Italian. So I remember asking for directions from a restaurant owner and he was like, cross the bridge J no funny,
1 (42m 14s):
Well, I’m probably pronouncing it way, way wrong, but I figure I might as well try.
4 (42m 19s):
Everyone loves someone who tried.
1 (42m 20s):
Yeah. Because if you were in Italy and asked somebody for a train ticket to Venice, they would have no clue what you’re talking about.
4 (42m 26s):
Even Rome it’s called fed .
1 (42m 28s):
Yeah. So that’s what I was going to say. If you were to say, I need a train ticket to Venice, they’d look at you. Like, what are you talking about? It’s the neat side.
2 (42m 34s):
Yeah, actually that happened to my dad. He and his girlfriend were looking to take a train to Venice and I believe it was his girlfriend. She went up to the counter and said, I want a train ticket to Venice please. And they looked at her like she was crazy and they almost weren’t able to make the train.
1 (42m 49s):
So I mean, some of the things you have to pronounce the way the Italians do I imagine. So I just want to make sure if any of our listeners go there Saturday, Roma,
2 (42m 58s):
Kim, where did you stay?
3 (42m 59s):
I also booked through Expedia and we did get an apartment. And I think it was about the same range that you guys were looking at, maybe around a hundred or so euros per night. And I actually really liked that we had an apartment, the guy met us there and let us in. He gave us the lay of the land. He had muffins there for us very nicely. So it was a one bedroom apartment, but it was really spacious. And since it was raining, we actually, and it was the last end of our trip. So we were kind of tired by this point. So we actually spent a lot of time in the apartment. We made dinner one night, which presented some challenges, not having like salt and pepper and oil and stuff like that, but we made it work and it was great. And yeah. So I would say if you are looking at places and you are seeing a lot of apartments, don’t be scared.
3 (43m 41s):
It’s pretty standard
2 (43m 43s):
Where you there one night or two nights,
3 (43m 44s):
We were there two nights.
2 (43m 46s):
Do you remember the price?
3 (43m 47s):
I think it was around a hundred a night. Yeah. I’m pretty sure it was about that.
2 (43m 51s):
I just looked up the cost of ours for one night in Venice. It was $163 and 94 cents
1 (43m 58s):
And the hotel. Wasn’t very good. And that’s again on the cheaper end
4 (44m 1s):
Dollars. Yes. That’s dollars.
1 (44m 3s):
Yeah. Yeah. Quite honestly, that’s on the cheap end. If you want something that you would say like, okay, this is a decent hotel compared to standards that we may be used to here in the United States. And I’m not necessarily talking motels, you know, just like a hotel, like a normal hotel, easily 300, $400 a night.
3 (44m 19s):
Yeah. You could stay in Lido, which is another island, but then you have to take the bus or you can stay in the mainland of Venice, but again, you have to take transportation. And so I weighed those options to the cost the time and kind of just figured, worth paying a little bit more to stay in the main island rather than save a few bucks and have the time and money to get around.
4 (44m 38s):
Well, do you guys have any last thoughts about Venice or Vinyasa?
1 (44m 42s):
No more, less thoughts that I don’t think we’ll address with the questions that I see. Come in for a question.
4 (44m 50s):
And I just want to make sure that you got your say and what you want to do.
1 (44m 53s):
No, nothing left.
4 (44m 54s):
Then let’s do the questions
3 (44m 55s):
You guys know. You can always send us questions on Instagram at Travel Squad Podcast, or you can email us at Travel Squad Podcast at gmail.com. And we’ll not only write you back and answer your question, but we may even feature it on an upcoming episode. So send us your question.
4 (45m 9s):
So our first question is from George in Chicago, what’s
3 (45m 15s):
Up George in
4 (45m 15s):
Chicago and he’s asking how much time do you need to Exploring Venice?
2 (45m 20s):
And I were there for one day and I would say one to two days is enough to explore the entire city. It’s very small. If you do want to do a surrounding island, I would probably say use the second day. But other than that, you can walk the entire island in just one day and see everything you need to see in one day.
1 (45m 36s):
That’s definitely true. I don’t think you need more than one day unless you are going to see the surrounding islands. Like Brittany said, however, I will say this. There is a lot of historical things to see in terms of other churches that we didn’t touch upon and things of that nature. So if you are interested in doing the doge museum and actually spending time in their scene, going into the Basilica, doing the tour, going into all the other churches, you may need a little bit more time, but in terms of, I just want to go there, see it experience it definitely. You don’t need more than a day. If I was to spend three days there, I think I would freak out a little bit. Like it was too much.
3 (46m 15s):
Yeah, I would agree. One to two days is probably fine, but there are surrounding cities. So you could use Venice as your home base and take the train system, which is an amazing train system. Really easy to get around and do like day trips. If you were into that kind of thing. Good
2 (46m 30s):
4 (46m 31s):
And George also asks question, I know, thank you for engaging with us. George sounds like you’re planning a trip. If you are, let us know how it goes. And he’s also asking, do you think it’s worth it to write a gondola?
3 (46m 43s):
Oh, that’s one thing we haven’t talked about and it’s probably one of the most famous things about Venice. That’s
1 (46m 49s):
True. Did you ride a gun to look him?
3 (46m 50s):
I did not write it. And I, we were kind of going back and forth about it, but it was raining when we were there. So we would have been getting rained on, on the boat. Not that we weren’t soaked already, but it’s also very expensive. I think it was like 80 euros
2 (47m 3s):
To a hundred euros. This was the price that I kept seeing. Yeah.
3 (47m 6s):
And honestly, if I was there again and it was warm, I would do it because it’s just something that you kind of just say you’ve done it. You know,
1 (47m 14s):
It’s part of Venice.
3 (47m 14s):
It’s like Mardi Gras in new Orleans. Like you’ve just done it. How
4 (47m 17s):
About if you’ve done it in Vegas at the Venetian?
1 (47m 22s):
Interestingly enough, it’s probably still just as expensive. Okay.
4 (47m 26s):
He said 80 to 100. I was like, Hmm. I wonder how much it is in Vegas.
3 (47m 29s):
One though. I mean, I think it would be nice. Just a couple to be on there, but you can have a group of people, so you can split that cost. If you say the squad was there, we could split it four ways. What did you guys do?
2 (47m 40s):
We did not end up doing it. I thought it was very expensive. And
1 (47m 44s):
So I will say that someone who works in my office building cat, who I’m really, really good friends with, I talked to her about my trips all the time. Cause shout out, shout out to cat. She travels all the time, just as well. When I told her we were extending our other European vacation to include a day in Venice, she told me, oh, definitely ride the gondola. So she is all on board about the gondola. She’d loved. It said it’s definitely worth it, even though it’s expensive. And so that really swayed me to be like, okay, I want to ride the gondola. I told Brittany about it and I did a little bit more research. And then I found out, yes, you could go on Viator or other websites and pre-book your gondolas to ride them. And they are expensive. Some of them include a glass of Prosecco or champagne with it, but they were about 50 to 80 euros and the ride lasted 15 to 30 minutes no longer.
1 (48m 32s):
But then the more and more I read reviews, it was basically saying that, oh, you think they’re going to sing to you? If they do sing, they don’t really sing or put their heart into it. Some of them will be silent and rude to you. They’ll say it’s 15 minutes and it’ll actually be an eight minute ride and it’ll be shorter. So once I saw that it swayed Brittany and I’s decision to say, okay, we’re not going to do it. And again, cat had gone a long time ago, probably before the big, big tourist influx where a lot of the locals actually I’ve read online that they present a lot of the tourists that come there, even though that they’re biting the hand, that feeds them just because it’s so overcrowded now. So that personal preference on if it’s for you or not,
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You’ll see them everywhere though. So you do still get to experience them and appreciate them and watch them go by, which is really cool when they go under a bridge, the guy like he’ll hop off onto the bridge and then get back on the boat. Once it goes under. It’s really cool. But yeah, if you want to do it, budget for it and do it all right, guys. Well, that’s all we have for you this week. Thank you so much for listening. I hope you enjoyed hearing about our experiences in Venice and I hope you have fun when you go yourself,
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