Our one-week ski vacation in the idyllic Dolomite Mountains ended on a very high note with a weekend visit to Venice. We were picked up by private van at 9 a.m. on Saturday morning and after winding our way down bucolic mountain roads, we arrived at the Venice Airport by noon. At the dock we were met by our private water taxis. Since there were 15 people in the group and assorted skis and snowboards, we were allotted three boats. The approximately 20-minute ride is a perfect time for photos and both the people who had never seen Venice and veterans like ourselves were snapping pictures left and right. Speeding across the lagoon and then winding through the narrow canals, we all felt like we were living a scene from the Bond film, Casino Royale with Daniel Craig. We even the passed the palazzo that collapsed in the Grand Canal in the movie (the real palazzo is still there).
The water taxis met us at the airport
After crossing the lagoon, the water taxi enters inner canals
We pass gondoliers on the Grand Canal
We go under the Rialto Bridge
Arriving at our hotel, the 4-Star Hotel Bonvecchiati
The Hotel Bonvecchiati is a stone's throw from St. Mark's Square so it's perfectly situated for visiting the most iconic Venetian sites. We explored on our own and also enjoyed a half-day tour with the other group members.
The Doge's Palace
The Bridge of Sighs (from which prisoners at the Doge's dungeon glimpsed Venice for the last time)
The private tour was included in the ski package that the High Life Ski Club booked with Ski.com, an excellent outfit that books ski trips for individuals as well as groups. They have trips all over the United States, Canada and abroad. We're already looking into next winter's adventure since this one was so perfectly arranged. The trip ended with a Monday afternoon water taxi ride back to the airport and a flight to Newark with just enough connection time in Zurich to buy Swiss chocolates. All in all, a perfect trip from start to finish.