We really enjoyed our time with Mike. We took the Backstreets of Venice tour on our second day in the city, and he took us to parts of Venice that were far from the tourist crowds. It was really nice to walk through quiet streets and “campos”, watching ordinary Venetians go about their daily chores. He pointed out interesting sights like “high-water” plaques set into the walls of buildings (the result of past floods) and a tiny square still surfaced in red bricks set in a herring-bone pattern (as was most of Venice at one point). And he was great with our six-year-old son. After Mike showed him how to use a Venetian drinking fountain (there’s a trick to it) our boy ran to the other drinking fountains we saw during the rest of our time in the city. Mike took us into the Palazzo Zenobio. It houses an art college these days, and we looked at some artwork in a second-floor gallery and enjoyed some quite time in the lovely courtyard garden. We never would have visited a place like this had we been walking Venice on our own. The next day, one of us took Mike’s photo tour. He offered some clear tips on how to take better photos and, once again, highlighted some parts of the city that were well off the beaten track. We’re definitely glad we took these tours.
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