Published on :   07/16/2015

Finding Pure Happiness in Burano and Murano

It is official: today, I stepped foot in the happiest and most colourful place on Earth.

There are very few places in this world that make me giggle with delight… but the vibrant fishing village of Burano, Italy is one of them.

Prior to the start of the Photo Tour, I had a handful of destinations that I absolutely could not wait to see. Burano probably topped this list. Months ago, I remember seeing photos of its picturesque canals lined with colourfully painted houses, and I knew right then that I had to find my way there somehow. Let me tell you: no matter how many photos you see of this place, no matter how many stories you hear of its beauty, there is absolutely nothing that prepares you for the feeling of wonder you feel as you roam down one of its colourful streets.

My first reaction was this: I giggled… I giggled like a child in a candy store. For the entire duration of our visit, I had the biggest smile plastered on my face. I was dazzled by the colours, enamoured with the vibrancy, hopelessly in love with this tiny village that most people haven’t even heard of. Burano is well known for its intricate lace work, but compared to its nearby neighbor Venice, it offers little in terms of major “sights”. In spite of that, it is a place that will fill your heart with happiness. I’ll let some of these photos do the talking:

Legend has it that the bright colourful houses served the initial purpose of helping fishermen locate the island even in times of dense fog. This rainbow legacy remains today, and it is one that the locals take very seriously. Those wanting to repaint their house need to apply for a permit through the government, and colour coordination is strictly enforced. This keen eye to detail has paid off though, because truly every alley, every street and every canal is beautiful. I could have spent hours roaming this real life rainbow.

Sadly, with a packed schedule for the morning, we had to move on. Our next stop was Murano, a town synonymous with the production of fine glass, a tradition that has been central to their way of life for centuries. In 1291, all glassmakers in the Venetian Republic were forced to move to Murano due to fears of fire in the Venice area. This heritage of glass making is still of great importance to the town, where glass factories and shops draw in visitors from all over the world. Our quick stop allowed us to enjoy a glass-making demonstration, during which we witnessed the creation of a flower vase and a sculpted horse. The speed and precision of these glassmakers is a superb spectacle to witness, and the final products of course, are absolutely beautiful to look at (and own, if you wish!).

They say that time flies when you’re having fun, and I suppose it’s true, because in the blink of an eye, my 8th cruise along the Venetian Lagoon and the Po has come to an end. To be honest, it feels a bit like saying goodbye to the love of my life! There are many things that I’ll miss about Venice and the beautiful places we’ve visited… I’ll miss soaking in the golden glow of the sunset every night, I’ll miss waking up before dawn for sunrise, I’ll miss slurping up plate after plate of delicious Italian food, and of course, I’ll miss being metres away at any given time from ice cold gelato. Thank you for an amazing time, Italy. I’ll miss you!

Well readers, I have a few days to myself for now, but the next time you hear from me, I’ll be cruising along the Elbe River in Berlin. Bring it on, Cruise #9!

- Christina