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Oh Italia & Deutschland!!!

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S: Oh Italia & Deutschland!!! Elden & Shondra July 2009

FC: Our European Adventure | Venezia | Frankfurt | Würzburg

1: On our way to Europe! Our first trip. First stop, Venice, Italy by way of U.S. Airways. Leaving Washington, DC & a connecting flight in Philadelphia, PA. Italy, here we come! | 7/1/2009 @7:21 p.m. We Take Off

2: We arrived at Frankfurt Airport late, missing our Air Italia flight to Rome so we could make it to Venice. We learned all of Frankfurt Airport that day. Ended up having to pay additional for the change of flight after U.S. Airways said that they were responsible for the flight since it wasn't booked a connecting flight with them. What a stressful situation. Well, Air Italia got us on a flight to Paris to take us to Venice. The last flight of the day.

3: Oui ... Oui ... Paris! We quickly got to see Paris via a connecting flight to Venice. Ok, we saw the airport ... but still .... LOL!

4: Thursday, July 2, 2009, at 1:41 p.m., after 1 1/2 day of traveling; we FINALLY ARRIVE IN VENICE! They say there is no better way to enter Venice other than by sea. They were so right! We took a private boat from the airport into Venice.

8: Ca' San Giorgio - Relais & Suites Bed & Breakfast Santa Croce, 1725 - 30125 - Venezia | Ca' San Giorgio Relais & Suites is a superb gothic style dwelling once used as a convent and restored to the finest detail to recreate an elegant and timeless residence. Situated in the heart of the historic centre of Venice on the evocative Salizada del Fontego dei Turchi, Ca' San Giorgio fronts on to a 13th century Venetian-Bizantino style Palace . Used as a goods warehouse by the Turkish merchants during the XVII century, it is now home to the well known Museo Civico di Storia Naturale (Civic Museum of Natural History). C San Giorgio is the ideal place to immerse yourself in the magical atmosphere of Venice. It is found along the route between the Stazione Ferroviaria di Santa Lucia (Railway station) and Piazza San Marco, passing the Rialto bridge along the way. On the doorstep of the hotel you will find the gondola-traghetto of San Marcuola which crosses the Grande Canal, putting you on the Cannaregio bank, an area of Venice rich in typical restaurants and "bacari" and where there is the possibility to challenge the prestigious Municiple Casino of Venice.

9: Our room was so delightful. Marbel shower and bidet! | Breakfast was every morning in the morning room. We had juice, cappuccino, croissants, cheeses, meats, every thing!

10: 7/2/2009 10:10pm (3:10 p.m. EST ) we had our first official Italian Meal. Elden had Lasagna - go figure and I had Chicken Marsala. Note to self, the main dressings for salad are balsamic vinegar and plain vinegar - LOL. Seafood is the predominant food of choice here. If you don't eat fish, such as myself and Elden you maybe out of luck.

11: Thursday, July 3, 2009 We explore the city with roads made from the sea

12: Exploring Beautiful Venezia

14: We explored shops with amazing wood work, clothing brands and fast food restaurants we see in the U.S. Can you believe we saw Lupin the III and Transformer ice cream pops?!

15: The scenery in one of the many shopping plazas was just beautiful. Everywhere you look, there is art. Art on the buildings and the ground. We may not have been able to read Italian but we certainly could appreciate the beauty of this city. | Absolutely Divine!

16: Piazza San Marco (St. Mark's Square) | The Piazza originated in the 9th century as a small area in front of the original St Mark's Basilica. It was enlarged to its present size and shape in 1177, when the Rio Batario, which had bounded it to the west, and a dock, which had isolated the Doge's Palace from the square, were filled in. The rearrangement was for the meeting of Pope Alexander III and the Emperor Frederick Barbarossa. The Piazza has always been seen as the center of Venice. It was the location of all the important offices of the Venetian state, and has been the seat of the archbishopric since the 19th century. It was also the focus for many of Venice's festivals. It is a greatly popular place in Italy even today. Piazza San Marco (often known in English as St Mark's Square), is the principal square of Venice, Italy. A remark often attributed to Napoleon (but perhaps more correctly to Alfred de Musset) calls the Piazza San Marco "The drawing room of Europe". It is one of the few great urban spaces in a Europe where human voices prevail over the sounds of motorized traffic, which is confined to Venice's waterways. It is the only urban space called a piazza in Venice; the others, regardless of size, are called campi. The Piazza is dominated by the Basilica, the Doge's Palace and the Basilica's campanile, which stands apart from it. The buildings around the Piazza are, anti-clockwise from the Grand Canal, the Doge's Palace, St Mark's Basilica, St Mark's Clock tower, the Procuratie Vecchie, the Napoleonic Wing of the Procuraties, the Procuratie Nuove, St Mark's Campanile and Loggetta and the Biblioteca Marciana. Most of the ground floor of the Procuraties is occupied by cafés, including the Caff Florian and Gran Caff Quadri. The Correr Museum and the Museum of Archaeology are located in some of the buildings of the Piazza. The Venetian Mint lies beyond the Biblioteca Marciana on the riva or bank of the Grand Canal.. *Wikipedia

17: The Correr Museum and the Museum of Archaeology

21: Basilica Cattedrale Patriachale di San Marco and commonly known as Saint Mark's Basilica The Patriarchal Cathedral Basilica of Saint Mark is the cathedral church of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Venice. It is the most famous of the city's churches and one of the best known examples of Byzantine architecture. It lies on Piazza San Marco (in the San Marco sestiere or district) adjacent and connected to the Doge's Palace. Originally it was the "chapel" of the Venetian rulers, and not the city's cathedral. Since 1807 it has been the seat of the Patriarch of Venice, archbishop of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Venice. For its opulent design, gilded Byzantine mosaics, and its status as a symbol of Venetian wealth and power, from the 11th century on the building was known by the nickname Chiesa d'Oro (Church of gold). The first St Mark's was a temporary building in the Doge's Palace, constructed in 828, when Venetian merchants stole the supposed relics of Saint Mark the Evangelist from Alexandria. This was replaced by a new church on its present site in 832; from the same century dates the first St Mark's Campanile (bell tower). The new church was burned in a rebellion in 976, rebuilt in 978 and again to form the basis of the present basilica since 1063. The basilica was consecrated in 1094, the same year in which the body of Saint Mark was supposedly rediscovered in a pillar by Vitale Faliero, doge at the time. The building also incorporates a low tower (now housing St Mark’s Treasure), believed by some to have been part of the original Doge's Palace. Within the first half of the 13th century the narthex and the new facade were constructed, most of the mosaics were completed and the domes were covered with higher wooden, lead-covered domes in order to blend in with the Gothic architecture of the redesigned Doge's Palace. The exterior of the basilica is divided in three registers: lower, upper, and domes. In the lower register of the facade five round-arched portals, enveloped by polychrome marble columns, open into the narthex through bronze-fashioned doors. Above the central door round three bas-relief cycles of Romanesque art. The external cycle frames a 19th century gilded mosaic (Last Judgment) that replaced a damaged one with the same subject (during the centuries many mosaics had to be replaced inside and outside the basilica, but subjects were never changed). Mosaics about St Mark relics’ stories are in the lunettes of the lateral portals; the first on the left is the only one in the facade preserved from the 13th century. In the upper register, from the top of ogee arches, statues of Theological and Cardinal Virtues, four Warrior Saints and St Mark watch over the city. Above the large central window of the faade, under St Mark, the Winged Lion (his symbol) holds the book quoting “Pax Tibi Marce Evangelista Meus” (Peace to you Mark my evangelist) . In the lunettes of the lateral ogee arches are four gilded mosaics renewed in the 17th century. In the center of the balcony the Greek Horses face the square.

24: St Mark's Campanile (Campanile di San Marco in Italian) is the bell tower of St Mark's Basilica | St Mark's Campanile (Campanile di San Marco in Italian) is the bell tower of St Mark's Basilica in Venice, Italy, located in the square (piazza) of the same name. It is one of the most recognizable symbols of the city. The tower is 98.6 metres (323 ft) tall, and stands alone in a corner of St Mark's Square, near the front of the basilica. It has a simple form, the bulk of which is a plain brick square shaft, 12 metres (39 ft) wide on each side and 50 metres (160 ft) tall, above which is the arched belfry, housing five bells. The belfry is topped by a cube, alternate faces of which show walking lions and the female representation of Venice (la Giustizia: Justice). The tower is capped by a pyramidal spire, at the top of which sits a golden weather vane in the form of the archangel Gabriel. The campanile reached its present form in 1514. As it stands today, however, the tower is a reconstruction, completed in 1912 after the collapse of 1902.

25: St Mark's Clocktower is a clock tower situated on St Mark's Square in Venice, adjoining the Procuratie Vecchie. It houses the most important clock in the city, St Mark's Clock (alternatively known as the Torre dell'Orologio or the Moors' Clocktower). It was constructed as a display of Venice's wealth, and as an aid to sailors on the Grand Canal about to depart on a voyage. The building was designed by Mauro Codussi and constructed between 1496 and 1499. It has five bays, of which the central bay is the widest. This bay incorporates a two-storey gateway, with the large clock face above, topped by a single storey tower with a depiction of a Lion of St Mark against the night sky, while two blackened bronze figures intended as giants but known as the "Moors" stand on top and ring a bell on the hour. The clock mechanism, dating from 1499 and much restored since then, drives the main clock face, which consists of several concentric dials. The outermost displays the number 1 to 24 in Roman numerals, and a hand embellished with a depiction of the sun indicated the hour. The second dial depicts the twelve signs of the zodiac, picked out, like the inner dials, in gilt on an enamel blue background. The inner dials indicate the phases of the moon and sun. The mechanism also moves a display above the clock face, where a niche with a depiction of the Virgin Mary and baby Jesus lies between two displays: the hour in Roman numerals and the minutes (in multiples of five) in Hindu-Arabic numerals. On Ascension Day, statues of the three kings pass in front of the displays. Terraces were added to the tower by Giorgio Massari in 1755, but it has otherwise been little altered. Major renovations have obscured the structure behind scaffolding for several years. Now though, this extraordinarily elaborate timepiece is on public show again, in full working order, and delighting visitors and Venetians alike, as it has done for more than 500 years.

27: The part of the Piazza between the Doge's Palace and the Biblioteca Marciana, Jacopo Sansovino's Library, is the Piazzetta San Marco. It is open to the lagoon at the mouth of the Grand Canal, and is known for the columns of Venice's two patrons, Marco and Todaro, that stand by the water's edge: on them are the lion of Saint Mark and the statue of Saint Teodoro of Amasea, "Santodaro" to the Venetians, who is standing on the sacred crocodile of Egypt. Theodore of Amasea is less well known than the Evangelist: he burned down a temple of Cybele as an act of Christian piety and was martyred for it. These columns constituted the official gateway to Venice; when there were no official guests in the city, gambling was permitted in the space between the columns. It was also the site of executions in the city. | Across the expanse of water (the Bacino di San Marco) is the Punta della Salute to the left of Baldassarre Longhena's Santa Maria della Salute. The Dogana di mare (Customs House) has given its name to every Italian customs shed, much as Venice also had the original Arsenal.

30: Doge's Palace

31: The Doge's Palace is a gothic palace in Venice. In Italian it is called the Palazzo Ducale di Venezia. The palace was the residence of the Doge of Venice. Its two most visible facades look towards the Venetian Lagoon and St Mark's Square, or rather the Piazzetta. The use of arcading in the lower stories produces an interesting "gravity-defying" effect. There is also effective use of colour contrasts. The current palace was largely constructed from 1309 to 1424, designed perhaps by Filippo Calendario. It replaced earlier fortified buildings of which relatively little is known. Giovanni and Bartolomeo Bon created the Porta della Carta in 1442, a monumental late-gothic gate on the Piazzetta side of the palace. This gate leads to a central courtyard. The palace was badly damaged by fire in 1574. In the subsequent rebuilding work it was decided to respect the original Gothic style, despite the submission of a neo-classical alternative design by Palladio. However, there are some classical features, for example since the sixteenth century the palace has been linked to the prison by the Bridge of Sighs. As well as being the ducal residence, the palace housed political institutions of the Republic of Venice until the Napoleonic occupation of the city. Venice was ruled by an aristocratic elite, but there was a facility for citizens to submit written complaints at what was known as the Bussola chamber.

32: Interior of the Palace Courtyard. Ornamental bronze well-head

33: The Doge (Venetian language, also Doxe, derived from Latin Dux military leader, duke; cf. English Duke, Italian Duce) was the chief magistrate and leader of the Most Serene Republic of Venice for over a thousand years. Doges of Venice were elected for life by the city-state's aristocracy. Commonly the person selected as Doge was the shrewdest elder in the city. The Venetian combination of elaborate monarchic pomp and a republican constitution with intricate checks and balances makes La serenissima a textbook example of a crowned republic. | One of the oldest gondalas

39: Inside Doge's Palace View from balcony on the previous page.

40: Doge's Palace If you imagine landing in Venice from the sea, as did those who came inland by ship, the first thing you see rising out of the water is the unmistakable shape of the Doge's Palace - the city's most famous building. The Palace is the most representative symbol of Venice's culture, which, together with the Basilica of San Marco at the back and the Piazzetta in the forefront, forms of the most famous sceneries in the world. For centuries the Doge's Palace had three fundamental roles: as the Doge residence, the seat of government and as the palace of justice. This was where some of the most important decisions for Venice's, and even Europe's destiny were taken. | Doge's Palace If you imagine landing in Venice from the sea, as did those who came inland by ship, the first thing you see rising out of the water is the unmistakable shape of the Doge's Palace - the city's most famous building. The Palace is the most representative symbol of Venice's culture, which, together with the Basilica of San Marco at the back and the Piazzetta in the forefront, forms of the most famous sceneries in the world. For centuries the Doge's Palace had three fundamental roles: as the Doge residence, the seat of government and as the palace of justice. This was where some of the most important decisions for Venice's, and even Europe's destiny were taken.

42: Golden Staircase (Scala d'oro) The Doge's apartment only occupies one of the Palace's three floors and to get to it you climb the beautiful Golden Staircase, begun halfway through the 16th century by Sansovino. The stairway owes its name to the spectacular golden stucco decorated vault and was formerly only used by Magistrates and important people.

43: Exiting Doge's Palace

44: Piazza

45: Piazza

48: Boats are just like cars here. Parked everywhere along the canal.

49: Farmers Market and stores. You have to see them use carts to pull everything from the harbor. Lots of stairs and passageways. No roads at all.

50: Beautiful Words can't truly describe this beauty just walking on the coble stone pathways

51: Our 2nd meal in Venezia is Pizza! | You can't go to Italy and not have Pizza, can you? Elden had buschetta (top left) & Shondra had salami (bottom right)

52: There are many churches and small canals in Venice. Every step gives you great admiration for it's beauty. Even the graffiti.

53: Did you check out The Hulk and Jack Sparrow? | Venice is also known for it's masks. These aren't the traditional masks. This mask maker is very unique.

56: We LOVE Venezia

58: When in Venzia do as the Lovers do ... Ride a Gondola into the sunset around the Grand Canal With Our Gondolier Andreas

62: Chinese Buffet in Venezia - Stop Playing! | View off of the Rialto Bridge along with side streets at night

63: Our last Meal in Venezia | Fried Cheese | Fried Cheese

64: On Venezia Mainland at the transportation center to catch a bus to the airport

65: Taking in the sites while riding the bus. | July 4, 2009

67: We leave Venezia on an Air Italian flight to Frankfurt by way of Rome | Rome Leonardo da Vinci Airport

68: Welcome to Frankfurt Am Main Airport in Frankfurt, Germany! | July 4, 2009

69: The Westin Grand FrankfurtKonrad Adenauer Strasse 7, 60313 Frankfurt am Main, Germany 069 2981-0

73: Weren't the antique cars, beautiful in the lobby of the Westin Frankfurt? | Mercedes, BMW and Cadillac

74: Our first meal in Frankfurt, was actually Thai food. Sorry, no pics of it but take our word for it. It was the best Thai food we have ever had. It was interesting ordering it in German. We noticed there were some German twists on the dishes as well. So on July 5, 2009 We headed to the Frankfurt train station that is 1 block over from our hotel to head to Würzburg so Elden can see his first German Palace. While at the train station, Elden got his first German food - Kase Pretzel.

75: We are on the train and Elden is a little sleepy. Shondra has Apfel Wasser. The view outside of the train is beautiful.

76: Welcome to Würzburg | Würzburg is a city in the region of Franconia which lies in the northern tip of Bavaria, Germany. Located on the Main River, it is the capital of the Regierungsbezirk Lower Franconia.

77: During World War II, on March 16, 1945, about 90% of the city was destroyed by some 225 Lancaster bombers in 17 minutes by a British air raid. Most of the city's churches, cathedrals, and other monuments did not survive, while the city center, dating from medieval times, was totally destroyed in a firestorm in which some 5,000 people perished. During the next 20 years, the buildings of historical importance were painstakingly and accurately replicated. The citizens who rebuilt the city immediately after the end of the war were mostly women (Trümmerfrauen = rubblewomen), since men were either dead or taken prisoners of war. Relatively, Würzburg was destroyed more completely than was Dresden in a firebombing the previous month. After the war, Würzburg was host to the U.S. Army's 3rd Infantry Division, 1st Infantry Division, U.S. Army Hospital and various other U.S. military units that maintained a presence in Germany. The U.S. units were withdrawn from Würzburg in 2008, bringing an end to over 60 years of U.S. military presence in Würzburg that had been greatly beneficial to the local economy.

79: ST. Mary's Chappel tTheMarienkapelle (St Mary’s Chapel), a Gothic hall church erected by the town between 1377 and 1440. The Neo-Gothic steeple has a double gilded 18th-century Madonna. The interior has noteworthy works by Tilman Riemenschneider, including the 1502 tombstone of Konrad von Schaumberg, and copies of the statues of Adam and Eve in the portal. (The originals are in the Mainfrnkisches Museum). The church has the grave of the master Baroque architect Balthasar Neumann (1687-1753).

83: Market Square and the Würzburg Cathedral. Würzburg Cathedral (Würzburger Dom) is a Roman Catholic cathedral in Würzburg in Bavaria, Germany, dedicated to Saint Kilian. It is the seat of the Bishop of Würzburg. With an overall length of 105 metres it is the fourth largest Romanesque church building in Germany, and a masterpiece of German architecture from the Salian period. | Würzburg Cathedral

84: Neumünster Church Eleventh Century Romanesque Basilica Constructed Over The Stone Coffin Of St Kilian, The Irish Missionary Murdered Here In The Year 689. The Baroque Facade Was Added Between 1710-1716. Take The Exit From The Left Nave To The Grave Of The Famous Medieval Minstrel Walther Von Der Vogelweide (1170-1230) And The Lovely Lusamgrtenlein, Little Lusam Garden.

85: The Baroque mansion "Falkenhaus" is another example of the wonderful post-war rebuilding of Würzburg. (Stadtarchiv Würzburg)

86: The Würzburg Residenz (Residence) is a palace in Würzburg, Germany. It was designed by several of the leading Baroque architects. Johann Lukas von Hildebrandt and Maximilian von Welsch, leading representants of the Austrian/South German Baroque were involved as well as Robert de Cotte and Germain Boffrand, who were prominent architects of the French Style. Balthasar Neumann, architect of the court of the bishop of Würzburg, was the principal architect of the Residenz, which was commissioned by the prince bishop of Würzburg Johann Philipp Franz von Schnborn and his brother Friedrich Carl von Schnborn in 1720 and was completed in 1744. The Venetian painter Giovanni Battista Tiepolo, assisted by his son, Domenico, painted frescoes in the building. The most spectacular interiors include the grand staircase, the chapel and the grand salon. The building was dubbed the "nicest parsonage in Europe" by Napoleon. It was heavily damaged in World War II, and restoration has been in progress since 1945.

88: Lunch in the Courtyard at the Würzburg Residenz. We had pork steak sandwich on a brat roll. | Pictures of the courtyard, gardens and grounds of the Würzburg Residence.

93: Würzburg hosts the Mainfranken Museum, with artifacts from prehistory until modern times Inside is a small cafe which you can use old German money to purchase itesm. We got lemonade soft drink. The doll is an African American doll preserved in the museum.

94: Würzburg Train Station along with pictures from the train we were on headed back to Frankfurt

95: Frankfurt Train Station

96: Center of Frankfurt during Iron Man Competition

97: Jager-Schnitzel, Pomme Fritz and Apfelstrudel.

98: Apfelstrudel, Bier , Apfel wine and a surprise strawberry shot the owner gave us. She also gave us a discount on our meal, which was so nice of her.

99: July 5, 2009 We sat in the lounge of the Westin and had some drinks while listening to an awesome house band. What a wonderful end to such a great trip!

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  • By: Shondra B.
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  • Title: Oh Italia & Deutschland!!!
  • Elden and Shondra's Italian and German adventure to Venice. July 2, 2009 to July 5, 2009
  • Tags: europe, germany, italy, travel, vacation
  • Published: almost 9 years ago