Floating through Friuli-Venezia, Italy

Cruising the Canals of Venice

Cruising the canals of Venice is a fantasy vacation that includes one of the most magical cities of the world. We started just a short taxi ride away from arriving at the Marco Polo Airport. Before visiting Venice proper we decided to explore the canals and small towns around Venice where we could take in the local color. Our crew consisted of friends, my husband, and my parents on our small chartered yacht. After  we stocked the boat with fresh food and wine, our first stop in the evening was a small restaurant resort right along the waterway where we could also spend the night on board. The food was fantastic and the wine equally as good. After dinner we took a short walk around the grounds of the resort in the setting sun back to our boat gently bobbing on the canal.

The morning included a local espresso and pastry before we took off for our day of cruising. The destination was a small fishing village to the north. It was relaxing to motor through the countryside. We had been forewarned that there were some shallow spots and we found one in the early afternoon. Aground in the middle of the waterway, we decided to make the best of it and quickly set the table on deck with bread, sausage and vegetables for an antipasto lunch while we waited for the tide to rise and come to our rescue. We cruised on to our next resort marina which featured a beautiful pool surrounded by roman pillars which we enjoyed while the sunset before dinner.

The next day we cruised on with a historical theme to visit the charming town of Grado and the UNESCO site, Aquileia, dating back to 181 BCE, with its stone cathedral, a marvel of ancient  beauty. We returned back to the boat after visiting a local fish market for a dinner expertly prepared by our crew. Another beautiful day on the water.

Soon it was time to start back to the city of Venice. We found a new, modern marina just on the edge of the city itself where we could use our boat as our floating hotel rooms. Transportation was a block away with the convenient aquabus, just like a bus with bars to hang onto and many stops along the way. We joined the many people commuting to work and rode right down to St. Mark Square where we could walk through cobbled streets to the many museums and special shops. We even took a classic gondola trip on the Grand Canal with an entertaining gondolier who serenaded us with classic tunes. Dinner that night was in a local neighborhood family owned restaurant. The food was excellent and the prosecco was local and served directly from a keg. After dinner the restaurant owner toasted us with complimentary limoncello they produced at their restaurant from an old family recipe.

Exploring Venice and the surrounding area on the water was the perfect way to experience this classic wonder of the world.

Highlighting some of my personal favorites: Curaçao, Alaska, and river cruising on the Danube. 

As humans, we dream. As travelers, we fulfill those dreams. To help you both dream of future vacations and fulfill your wanderlust, we bring you this edition of Escape. On the following pages, you will find a parade of luxurious travel experiences, from boutique cruise ships and immersive tours to all-inclusive resorts and regal transatlantic voyages.

35   pages of travel inspiration in Escape, the magazine