Hello helloooo! Back as I promised with my second blog post regarding the best trip I had until now. It will include many many beautiful photos of so many amazing places that dad, husband and I were lucky enough to have before our eyes. Places like Val di Funes and Lago di Braies which were absolutely breathtaking, iconic cities such as Venice or pretty little islands such as Burano. Ohhh and by the way, Burano was the most colorful place I had seen in my life, just as colorful as my soul! So hey, let’s get started with PART 2.
DAY 4. After visiting Hallstatt, yessss Hallstatt, the prettiest villages of them all… we then went directly to Salzburg because there was where we had the accommodation for that night. To be honest, my initial plan was to spend the night in Hallstatt, but it was too expensive. I mean, 150 euros per night is way too much, even though we are talking about Austria here. So that’s why I chose Salzburg instead. But I am glad we did it.
Salzburg’s historic center is internationally renowned for its baroque architecture, it is one of the best-preserved city centers and it was listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1996. The city has three universities and a large population of students. Also, Salzburg was the birthplace of 18th-century composer Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart.
Once we got there, we made the check-in at B(l)ackhome City Hotel Salzburg (rated as “Very good 8.2” on Booking). We paid 72 euros for a 2 room apartment. The apartment was truly all black, but it was very interesting. I am a detail-oriented person and when I book for a room I always search for the most convenient one, meaning the best value for the money. But also more than that, it has to look pretty!
After that, went outside and headed directly to Salzburg Citadel. Or at least, this was the plan. Wanted to get there by car, however we didn’t find the proper way. Hmmm… wanted to take the cable car until the citadel, also didn’t find the proper way to get there. The thing is that we were kind of tired and it was already getting late so we just climbed a hill and took some pictures from there.
We wandered around the city, found a place to eat because we were staaaarving, and then look… found this bridge with all these pretty love locks. Every time I am photographing love locks I can’t help to wonder, how many of the couples that have their padlock hanging there are still together? Love is such a powerful feeling, yet so complicated most of the times. I didn’t have a padlock though, damn!
DAY 5. We went back somewhere near Hallstatt, more exactly in Obertraun, to reach the 5 Fingers platform at 2100 m height. I have shown you photos from up there in my previous blog post. Hope you liked them!
After Obertraun, our next destination was Innsbruck. I have to tell you that I was super impressed by this city. I mean, the location is awesome! The city is based somewhere between the mountains and the architecture is absolutely lovely. I would definitely like to go back one day for a longer stay.
We stayed at Hostel Marmota (rated as “Very good 8.1” on Booking) and we paid 74 euros for a double room – breakfast included. Dad slept to a friend of his that is living in Innsbruck since many years ago. Our room view: SPECTACULAR! You could just open the window and admire those impressive mountains. Ohhh
After the check-in, went outside for a stroll and visited the city. The city center was so beautiful, many people roaming around, a lot of cute restaurants… But because there were so many people out there, decided to come back early in the following morning to take some photos when the streets were clear. Anyway, this wasn’t the case, because the very next morning it was actually raining! Yeah, lucky meeee! :)) But I still have some photos taken that evening. Check them out!
What about this building? I just loved it! The Ottoburg (Otto Castle) is a gothic tower house from the high middle ages, situated at the entrance of Innsbruck’s old town documented since 1476. Today, the tower is home to romantic “Restaurant Ottoburg” on the ground floor and five original rooms on the upper floors, from where guests enjoy views of the mountains of Nordkette, the Inn river and the nearby “Golden Dach’l”, Innsbruck’s emblematic landmark.
And yes, we ate at this restaurant! The food was delicious. We actually received on the house as an appetizer, some cute little dishes containing something like a garlic lard and some bread. Never had anything like this before. Super tasty!
DAY 6. Heading to Italy – Val di Funes. Ok, I am sure you all have seen those amazing wallpapers with a little old church and the Dolomites in the background. Yup, that’s the place! However… the weather was awful. I mean, it was raining and it was super cloudy. The entire trip was organized especially for this place, it was my dad’s most wanted wish, so we were a bit sad but still hopeful.
Went there and found the most perfect spot: meaning a bench in the middle of the nature facing the Dolomites. Except that, the Dolomites couldn’t be seen anywhere because of the clouds. So we just sat there, hoping for the sky to get cleared and checking the www.accuweather.com website every 10 minutes.
No luck at all. And the thing was that we were supposed to go to Verona for that evening because that’s where our accommodation was for that specific night. I was really excited about Verona and yeah… excited also about Romeo and Juliet’s balcony. *insert romantic feelings here*
BUT! But but but but you know that sometimes in life, you have to take difficult decisions! So we then decided to cancel the booking in Verona and look for an accommodation in Val di Funes because the weather for the next day seemed to be sunny. Dolomites vs Verona 1-0
Found a place to stay at Kabishof (rated as “Superb 9” on Booking) and paid 70 euros for a whole basement apartment including a sauna. Whaaat??? Aha ahaaa. So cool, right? Ohhh forgot to mention that while we were on our way to the accommodation, a police car “chased” us and asked for our IDs and all. I guess Romanian people look like villains!
And now what? Well… my friend @claudiumaxim advised me to go at Lago di Braies because it was pretty close to us at that point. So said, so done! By the way, pleaseee visit Claudiu’s Instagram account because it is absolutely mind-blowing. Ohhh and this lake… wow! Just wow. No words needed. I’m just going to show you pictures. The water color was insane. Such perfect green-turquoise shades!
After visiting this beautiful lake and while we were on our way back to the accommodation in Val di Funes, something amazing happened. The sky started clearing up! You really can’t imagine how happy we all were at that point. So we decided to go back at that spot where we were in the morning, waiting again to see the Dolomites.
And finally! We could see them. Dolomites are so impressive! This place… Heaven on Earth! Like really! I don’t know about you guys but I never ever seen a place more beautiful than this one in my whole life. Now think about all those people who actually live there and wake up every morning with this perfect view in front of their eyes. So peaceful and serene!
DAY 7. Couldn’t live the place without seeing the Dolomites once more, in the morning light! Now if you want to google the place to know exactly how to get there, search for Santa Maddalena church. Also, there is another lovely church near this one, named Chiesetta di San Giovanni. Both are very beautiful and the surrounding landscapes are just breathtaking.
FUN FACT: Do you see that “fence” behind me? I wanted to jump over it because I was eager to take that perfect shot with the pretty pink-ish church and mountains behind it when… guess what? The fence was electrified. I think for cattle or God knows for what. But I just got electrocuted and yelled pretty loudly in that perfectly silenced morning. AHHHHH! Oh well, s%*t happens.
Said goodbye to that amazing place and started our journey to Venice! I am going to be honest and admit that I somehow always considered Venice a cliché and never hurried to visit it (for example, having the same impression about Paris, never visited it). But… once I got there… I soon realized that there is actually no other place like Venice, literally. I was absolutely impressed by every little corner that I had found there, even though it was full of tourists and way too crowded. But I guess it is what it is, nowadays you can’t have Venice without the agglomeration, ever. It’s part of the deal that you have to accept!
We stayed at Venice King Apartment (rated as “Fabulous 8.8” on Booking) and paid 87 euros for 1 night. Expensive, I know. And we actually paid even more, adding the cleaning fee and city taxes, we paid a total price of 122 euros. Oh and the apartment was not even in Venice, it was situated in a nearby neighborhood named Mestre. You can imagine how expensive an accommodation can be in the city center of Venice, if this one was 122 euros and it was actually outside the city. Anyway, the apartment was absolutely lovely, super clean, extremely nicely decorated. We really enjoyed our stay there.
In my mind, I thought one day would be enough to see both Venice and Burano. I was more excited about Burano than Venice, to be honest. So it was super important to me, to get to see this colorful island as well. Luckily, the girl who handed the keys of the apartment told me that there’s absolutely no way to visit both places in 1 day so we kind of rescheduled everything and spent more time, meaning 1 day and a half.
We didn’t actually do much that day, just wandered around the city, got lost through those narrow streets and had some pizza and pasta somewhere at a restaurant near Rialto Bridge. But hey, let me show you some pictures and you will see for yourselves how magical Venice indeed is!
The transportation in Venice is by “vaporetto”, meaning bus-boats roaming around all day through the canals. The best option for us was to buy a 1 day travel card of 20 euros each and use the transportation as we wished. One single journey costs 7.5 euros so it is very worth it to buy the 1 day travel card instead of paying that amount each time using the vaporetto. And trust me, you’ll use it super often because Venice is quite big and a little bit twisted.
What to not miss in Venice: The Grand Canal, Rialto Bridge, Piazza San Marco, Ponte dei Sospiri and never the least, admire the pretty gondolas! I am sure that there are also other amazing spots, but this is what we had time to visit that day.
DAY 8. Woke up early in the morning and headed directly to Piazza San Marco to take the ferryboat and visit Burano. On our way, the ferryboat also stopped in Murano. Here is the place where the famous colorful glass is made! Today, Murano is home to a vast number of factories and a few individual artists’ studios making all manner of glass objects from mass marketed stemware to original sculpture.
And now… Burano! There isn’t any other place on Earth more colorful than Burano. If you know other places, please let me know, coz I wanna visit them all! We spent only 1 hour there because we were a bit pressed for time. Just wandered around and took pictures. But please, let me show you!
Hope you enjoyed PART 2 of this adventure and hey, there’s one more coming. The last part will include the following: Lake Bled, Ljubljana, Zagreb and a very beautiful place in Romania named “Cazanele Dunarii” meaning Danube’s Depressions.
Thank you all for reading! Much love for you guys. See you again in a couple of weeks.
Until next time,
PS: If you are using booking.com to find the best accommodations like I do, then you should use the following link to receive 10% of your money back on your next travel! It’s a win-win situation… so why not?