Italy Part One – Trieste, Palmanova and Venice

It’s time to cover the next country on my way. There’s no way to fit all in one post, so this will just be the first part. If Slovenia was mainly about nature, Italy was arts and history – and lots of it…

Quick stop in Trieste

I drove to Trieste and really had problems finding my way to the camper park. I drove by the place twice before getting there. But then I had the next frustration… The parking meter only took coins and I could not get in since I was missing a euro. There was nothing around that looked like it could give me the change so I decided to go for a plan B. I parked at a free spot a bit further from the downtown area that was free, but a bit dodgy looking. I didn’t get into any trouble though.

Trieste also was a part of the Habsburg empire, just like most of Slovenia. It used to be the empire’s Mediterranean port city. You could definitely see it in the architecture. The city did not really impress me that much so I only stayed for a night and continued ahead after having breakfast.

The Mediterranean sea from Trieste.
An old acquaintance: Palmanova

Since the old fortress town of Palmanova was on my way to Venice, I decided to stop there for a bit. I visited the town in the spring of 2007 when I was living in Salzburg. It was a trip organized by the pedagogical institute that I was doing my assistant teacher posting at. Nothing much had changed, but nothing much can in a town protected by UNESCO.

Palmanova, strange relic of a town.
Look Palmanova up in Google maps to see the form. This is part of the fortress walls.
And now for something completely different: Venice

Somehow it felt difficult to appreciate the things I saw in Ljubljana and also in Trieste. After leaving Trieste I was sure that I just couldn’t handle cities anymore that I had reached a saturation point of a kind. I was wrong.

In so many ways, Venice is just crazy! The amount of tourists for one. The rising sea levels and the weird labyrinthian and almost claustrophobic feeling of the old town to name a couple of more reasons. Apparently if the city is different enough from the rest I have no issues. I stayed there just for two days and spent most of the time just wandering around the old city. I could have stayed longer too, but after the two days, I had had enough of the masses of people.

San Marco square in Venice.
Plenty of narrow streets in Venice. Two people can not fit side by side without turning a bit sideways.
The grand canal at sunset.
Gondoliers at work.

I stayed at a campsite that was really quite nice. It had a pool that I used a lot for swimming laps and a bus connection to the old city was very good. It was more expensive than normal campsites, but it was also close to something quite special so I didn’t mind. But there was something I gave them negative feedback for…

Why should you do things the way they’re meant to be done

When I checked out and was ready to leave I made a dumb mistake. There was no one parked at the slot in front of me so I decided to take the “easy” way out and drive straight to the road leading out of the campsite. It seemed like a good idea until I heard a cracking sound. That’s when I remembered that there was a thick wooden pillar with the slot numbers just in front of my bumper. The pillar was still stubbornly there, the bumper had not bothered it much, but unfortunately the same could not be said vice versa. A bottom plate was hanging on the ground and there was a deep crack in the bumper itself.

The broken bumper and the culprit.

I walked back to the reception and told them that I drove to one of their place marks and they said that this was ok. Apparently everyone does it. I told them that it is not ok with me and that I might need some extra time. I also gave them an idea that they might want to consider putting something higher than just the 20 cm pillar to mark the slots.

Since it was Saturday, there was no place open that could do some fixing work so I took off the part that was hanging loose (luckily just four screws) and decided to continue as planned to Florence. That ended up being a good choice, but more about that in the next post.

1 thought on “Italy Part One – Trieste, Palmanova and Venice

  1. Pingback: Italy Part Two: The Tuscan Capital (and Pisa) - Roadnaranja

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