Loving the Lido

A 45 minute train journey and we arrive at the station in Venice, excited to be spending time in this timeless city. Outside, the place is heaving with people and boats. We weave our way through the crowds, over a bridge, and down to Piazzale Roma. Officially resident in the Veneto, we’re entitled to travel cards, and we fill in the appropriate forms, show our ID, and buy a carnet of reduced-fare rides from the Hellovenezia office.

Then we trundle our overnight case back to the station, to clamber aboard water-bus number 51. The trip takes 35 minutes via the Giudecca Canal and St Mark’s Basin to the Lido.

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It’s here we’ve booked our hotel. Stepping off the vaporetto, we take in the view of Venice with the Dolomites forming a backdrop to the scene.

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It’s rare to see the mountains from here, and we feel blessed the weather is so limpid we can do so.

A short taxi ride later (there are cars on this island) and we’re at Pensione Villa Stella. Our hosts are welcoming and the room they give us is lovely.

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Villa Stella Garden

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We relax for half an hour, then set out for an evening stroll. The Lido has a more laid-back, residential feel to it than traditional Venice. We pass the beaches, beautifully empty at this time of the year.

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After about 45 minutes’ walk, we stop for a beer at one of the bars along the promenade, where local residents are also enjoying a drink.

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We catch sight of the building where the Venice Film Festival is held then pass the boarded up Hotel des Bains, famous for being the location of Thomas Mann’s novella Death in Venice and Visconti’s later film of that name. Footsore and hungry, we make our way to La Tavernetta Wine Bar & Restaurant for dinner. We order baked sea-bass and, when it arrives, it’s absolutely delicious.

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Having abstained from a starter, we indulge in chocolate soufflé with vanilla ice-cream for dessert, washed down with crisp white wine. Yum!

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Replete, we chat about our next adventure. Tomorrow we’re off to explore the island of Burano, and that will be the subject of my next post.

9 thoughts on “Loving the Lido

  1. Oh, how lovely! You’ve literally left me speechless. To see it through your eyes makes it so easy to visualize it myself. Looking forward to reading about the rest of your journey.

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  2. Wonderful post – and wonderful that you have a resident’s way of getting around. Think other tourist places should copy and have a ‘back way’ in…
    I stayed in the Lido once and it’s enchanting. We went in June and the beaches were pretty much empty then. Looking forward to your next post. Colourful Burano is my favourite Venetian island – your writing will bring it all back.

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  3. Thanks for your comment, Bridget. Our rides cost one Euro compared with seven for non-residents. Places like London could always check the electoral role to prove residency and make it cheaper for Londoners to get around. Loved the Lido and a much more practical place to live than Venice itself, I think. But Burano captured our hearts and I’m looking forward to writing my next post. We were blessed with such perfect weather, blue skies that seemed to go on forever. The colours captivated us. S x

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  4. It was all so pretty, Siobhan. The map was a nice touch. I would have been stressed out about that part of the journey… But I’m not nearly as brave about exploring as I once was! 🙂

    Looking forward to the next leg of the trip.

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