Jen – Venice and the last days in Siena

Super busy week and still packing tomorrow! Leaving Siena to spend my final week in Rome! But before that, last weekend was spent in Venice, the city of bridges! It was such a beautiful place, kinda touristic but different from the rest of Italy i’ve seen. So much water everywhere and so many shops, i’m pretty glad it was my last trip before Rome so I got a lot of shopping done 🙂 Also started missing seafood so this was the perfect place! Everything I ate, if it wasn’t dessert, it had seafood!

The start of the trip wasn’t ideal but ended well. We had a stop in Bologna that was supposed to be 30 mins (we decided to take the bus since trains where double the price).. but we ended up waiting 3 hrs for the next bus.. If I had known, would have gotten a nice meal there instead of McDonalds :/ Got to Venice by 4, so at least it wasn’t too hot anymore and went from there.

First glimpse of Venice from the bus

We had an early dinner at a small restaurant and I ordered the seafood ravioli. When everyone first saw it, we were all like.. THAT’S IT? but once I tasted it, it was worth it! So good, really wish there was more though 🙁

After food, we started walking around to different shops. The thing I wanted to see in Venice was the sunset (a good friend told me it was amazing.) Unfortunately, between shops we missed it 🙁 If everything works out, i’ll be back in the future and see it then at my leisure 🙂 What we were able to do was ride on a gondola! Wasn’t planning on it when we decided to come here but was definitely a nice random thing we decided to do 🙂

realizing we missed the sunset, still beautiful

getting kinda close there..

our turn on the gondola!

at least one of us got the romantic experience 😛

After we headed to the camping grounds where we stayed. Wasn’t as bad as I thought. We had a cute little cabin that gave off a nice woody fragrance and the only downside was having to walk outside to use the restroom/shower. Worked out pretty well for us since it was pretty cheap and we really only needed a place to sleep for the night 🙂

The next day, we started a bit early and it was raining a bit (first rain in the whole time i’ve been here!) and it was nice not having so many people around.. but shops weren’t all opened either :/ We did more sightseeing in this open space with some very beautiful buildings. There was also a neat bell that my friend told me about so we got to see that in action.

Breakfast.. Crab and egg sandwich! So good!

After the bell tower, we went for lunch. I didn’t really see anything on the menu that particularily appealed to me so I ended up getting a pizza with arugula, grape tomatos and prawns (they were so few and tiny :/). Wasn’t a bad pizza, just wanted something more spectacular for my last meal in Venice. Soon after, we had to start heading back to catch out bus. It was fun Venice, i’ll be back!

The week after Venice was pretty hectic. Last week of classes so lots of cramming, souvenir shopping and packing to leave Siena.  I also had to clear out the stuff in the fridge so I made tried my best to use all the ingredients. I was able to make a pretty good gnocchi 🙂

Also went out to eat a lot since my time here is coming to and end, so I figured I’d enjoy the food the last few days. During the class break,  got a apple turnover (I know it’s not exactly Italian) but it was very good. Just the right amount of sweetness and pretty light. 


After class, we were invited to a wine tasting by the director of UNISTRA with a Japanese group that was also going so we got to taste some pretty good stuff. We tried a white, red and a chianti. I preferred the white but the others were very good as well. After we walked back to the dorms (had to drop off wine I bought) before heading out to dinner with a friend. Daisy recommended a medieval restaurant called Gallo Nero (Black Rooster) and my friend Amey and I shared the medieval tasting menu. It was different and I really enjoyed the experience.

first course


second course.. probably one of my favorite courses of the meal

third course, been a while since I had duck so it was good 🙂

pretty good, wasn't too crazy about the honey over it.. didn't really compliment the cake.

The next and final night of Siena, our friends went out to a final dinner at this trattoria called Fonte Giusta and it was amazing. The food was good, company great and prices VERY reasonable. Loved every moment of it (especially the tiramisu!). After we spend our last night at the Piazza del Campo to say goodbyes to some of friends we have met during this lovely month in Italy.

that we did!

Tortelli di melanzane al pomodoro e pecorino di Fossa (Eggplant tortelli of aubergine, tomatoes and fossa cheese)


final night in Siena

It was a awesome month with lots of traveling, great food and awesome company. I did learn a bit of italian (really wish I could retain/understand more of it.. but that’ll just have to take practice), though I think the best thing I got out of it was being able to meet new people and being able to experience what I did with them. Meeting them have been the highlight of the trip and it would not have been as memorable without them. It’s sucks that we all have to go our separate ways after being so close during this time, but to me it’s not good bye, it’s see you later (we all agreed to have reunions at each other’s weddings!.. honestly, I can’t wait for my friend Amey’s (indian weddings are amazing!!))

The final stop of Italy for Daisy and I is Rome.. but that’s for another time..








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