After visiting Murano we walked ourway through the tourist traps of the Strada Nova towards Ferrovia Train Station where we could catch Vaporetto 1. We plugged ourselves into Rick Steves and budget toured ourselves down the Grand Canal past the weathered, watered, and weary palaces.
We disembarked at Merkato Rialto which houses the fish and vegetable market. Most of the stands were already shutting down for the day (or because it was Monday) but we stopped there for the traghetto (ghetto boat?). The traghetto is a gondola manned by official gondoliers who are obligated to volunteer for this public service a few days a month. This functions as a ferry crossing for only 2 Euros for a semi-gondola-like experience (at a fraction of the cost since a gondola rental can be 80-100 Euros).
From here we walked winding back streets which opened into the occassional piazza and cross little bridges until we got the the main bridge – Rialto.
Hopping back on the vaporetto we continued down the Grand Canal past varied merchant palaces, University of Venice, Ca’ Rezzonico, and Peggy Guggenheim’s collection (now a musueum), the wooden Accademia Bridge, and the La Salute Church.
A few more stops and we were at San Marco and St. Mark’s Square. We passed the crowds and disembarked at San Zaccaria (1 stop beyond San Marco) for a quick lunch before braving the throngs of humanity and pigeons at Staint Mark’s Square.
Salute! Cin Cin!