I already shared my number 1 tip for visiting Venice and how I like to spend two days in Venice in previous posts, now I’d like to share additional Venice tips – getting away! You’re going to check out some Murano glass and Burano beauty.
You’re not going too far, just to Murano and Burano, two islands off of Venice that you can get to on the water bus. The same easy-to-use and inexpensive water bus that takes you all around and through Venice also goes to a small set of islands around Venice. You just need to take route 42 to Murano and from there you can get over to Burano. Nothing could be easier!
When people come to Venice they buy two things. Carnival masks and Murano glass. Trouble is, most of the Murano glass that tourists buy is not from Murano, but rather China.
Authentic Murano glass costs a pretty penny and it is not something most tourists would purchase. And the fact that they are finding Murano glass real cheap doesn’t make most tourists stop to wonder why and the Venetian and Murano shopkeepers aren’t going to tell you unless you ask directly.
Personally, I am not a shopper, nor am I one to buy souvenirs. When I do, it is usually an item of clothing like a scarf that becomes part of my wardrobe. So neither my husband nor I were in the market for any jewelry or housewares to buy on Murano. And ultimately, unless you are in the market to buy glass or want to eat at a very touristy restaurant, there is not much to do on Murano. In my mind, it is a necessary evil to get to Burano. [I would love to know if anyone has a different opinion of Murano, please share!]
Once you leave Murano and arrive in Burano you will see it is a whole other world. It is a small fishing village that is a photographer’s dream. There is a little downtown area that has shops which sell lace handicrafts (doesn’t it seem that all fishing villages do this? I guess the wives need something to do??). There are also touristy restaurants in the downtown area as well.
But I had done my homework. I had found that there is a small restaurant off the beaten path that serves wonderful food and wine. And it is still not quite on the radar for tourists. If you Google ‘Burano restaurants’ it doesn’t come up, you have to dig real deep. And I am so glad I did because the restaurant I found was the perfect start to a lovely afternoon.
It’s called the Riva Rosa. The menu is small with an emphasis on seafood and pasta with a real great wine selection. The restaurant is inside a house and the decor is beautiful. The atmosphere was tranquil, efficient, just lovely. A reservation is required and I had our hotel concierge as the Westin Europa & Regina make the booking.
Riva Rosa is located at Via San Mauro 296 in Burano. The telephone is 041.730.850.
But what is the real delight of Burano? The houses! They are painted in such whimsical and warm colors and so lovely to look at. You can take photos for hours. I know because we did!
Aren’t they amazing? We walked around and looked at all the homes and the care that went into the detail of the outside, it was incredible!
And at sunset, tuly magnificent.
When we got back to Venice at the end of the day we passed by a shop that I had not seen before. It was not too far from our hotel. It was a shop that sold Murano glass jewelry which not being an interest of mine I had passed it up many times on our way to our hotel. However, at night, the content of the store was quite enticing and I went in to speak with the shopkeeper.
She had necklaces on hand that were beautiful, but she was also making them to-order in the color preference desired by her customers. And she was doing it quickly, within a couple of hours. Her glass is authentic Murano, and that is represented in the price. But she was doing unique pieces which were really something. [This reminds me of a post done by Susan of Transient Travels on the topic of buying local souvenirs.]
I actually bought some pieces, which wasn’t my plan. They were so beautiful I couldn’t help it. And like most jewelry that I make the mistake of buying, it is sitting in a box in the bottom of my dresser! In any case, if you want to buy authentic Murano pieces while visiting Venice, I recommend her shop which is called Le Perle.
The location is: San Marco, 1231 Frezzeria (phone: +39 041 528 5614). I took a picture of two necklaces I bought to give you an indication.
How about you? Have you been to Venice, Murano or Burano? What were your experiences?
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