From Venezia to the Most Italian Town in Croatia
The breakfast room at the Pension Guerrato was less crowded this morning, but at every table, people were planning out their day with their guide books. Because we were able to leave our luggage at the hotel, there was time for us to make one more excursion.
San Giorgio Maggiore is located on an island across the Grand Canal. It has impressive art work that would be considered a masterpiece anywhere else, and stunning choir stalls, each hand carved to tell an episode from the life of St. Benedict. Hidden behind the church is a cafe where you can get a nice table right down by the water.
An elevator whisks you to the top of the bell tower for an amazing 360 degree view of Venezia. Looking toward the town we saw hundreds of tourists milling about in San Marco and on the bridges. Off in another direction we spotted sleepy villas, a garden maze, and a refreshing looking swimming pool.
Finding a comfortable spot on a vaporetto in Venice can be a challenge, and even more frustrating is waiting in the hot sun for one to arrive, only to learn it is going in the wrong direction. We were lucky, though, and our vaparetto to the port where we caught our boat to Croatia was less crowded and felt like a sightseeing cruise. The best part was the 30 minute trip along Venice's shoreline where we were in a parade of small cruisers. Out at sea the water was smooth the whole way and at one point I saw a magnificent fish leap into the air and dive back down under.
Rovinj, Croatia is so picturesque. Before WWII this was part of Italy and has a very Italian look about it with stucco houses with tiled roofs. Our accommodation, Casa Garzatto, is a small flat right in the heart of the old town. It is decorated in a modern seaside style with lemon yellow walls, a tiny kitchenette, and even a much needed washing machine.
Dinner was at the hotel's atmospheric restaurant where tiny votive candles line the walls outside. It took awhile for our dinner to arrive, but the idea here is to slow down and take time to take it all in that you're on holiday. David's risotto with asparagus was excellent.
After dinner we walked around the town. Off on a side street we discovered a tiny restaurant, Valentino, sloping down to the sea where you can sit on a padded cushion with a nightcap and watch the fish as they swim in the water above submerged lights. As soon as we sat down, the host said, "Might I suggest our evening's recommended drink." It turned out to be $32 so David opted for the less expensive, but chic, Bellini. It came served in a delicate tulip shaped glass. The drink was made with Moet champagne and peach puree which was so fresh you would think it was right off the tree. Tomorrow we will just take a relaxing day and explore what this island has to offer.