Venice = Romance. But Gondola = Cliché. You want to really impress in Venice?

I got to go to Venice finally this summer – it was an impromptu stop over on the route between Milan and Zagreb – and one of my finer moments of erratic bahaviour.

We stayed in Venice Mestre which is a 10 minute train ride outside of Venice proper, but saved us a packet, and it meant we go to leave the tourists behind at the end of the day. Best of all though was the Kabalistic pensione (that’s B&B to you) landlady who read my fortune based on my ‘numbers.’ “Much pain, she wailed, so much pain, ah you are a writer.” So, she got that in one – I simply transfer the pain onto my readers – so ‘much pain’ indeed – but not for me if I can help it.

Anyway, Venice itself is one of those places the beats expectations, no matter how many times you’ve seen that last Bond Movie but one. - Canals, superb buildings, more galleries than you can shake a Gondola oar at, and some of the best pizza I’ve ever had.

But now to my second fine moment of erraticisim – I thought, I’m not shelling out for a Gondola to look like a fool and end up in some fat American tourist’s photos – I’ll paddle my own canoe – which is exactly what I did.

Well it was a Kayak to be exact – yes, I proved my manly manliness by Kayaking the Canals of Venice

I would recommend doing this pre-vino, as you’ll need your wits about you. But give Venice Kayak (+39 346 477 1327, ) a shout and forget the Water Taxis and Gondola prats who are only trying to hit on your missus while you pay for this insult.

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