May is a wonderful time to visit Italy, the weather is starting to warm but is still pleasant to stroll around during the day and the sun seems to be shining everywhere. I had the pleasure of visiting two beautiful Italian cities during this month and it was a memorable trip.
Flying into Verona from London Gatwick in British Airways Club Europe (business class) was a fantastic experience, I hardly noticed the early start as I sipped champagne and ate my cooked breakfast, watching the Italian landscape below. Flying in it is very noticeable how close Verona is to Lake Garda, a reminder that a lakeside break can so easily be combined with a stay in the city.
Verona itself is a wonderfully charming city, with a traditional and authentically Italian ambience as you walk through the cobbled streets heading towards the Arena. Whichever of our Kirker hotels you stay in you are never more than a 10 minute walk from the city’s centrepiece, which is also worth a visit – even if you’re not attending a performance at the famous annual Opera Festival. The city also looks beautiful from the hills, where we have a small, tranquil property – Relais Fra’ Lorenzo. If you like to visit Italian cities, but also like a very peaceful property with open space and a pool then the Relais Fra’ Lorenzo is perfect, and still in close proximity to the city centre.
Only an hour by train from Verona is the city of Venice. Although arriving into Venice is never a chore, it is made all the more special when you are greeted by a private water taxi transfer to whisk you off to your hotel, past the throngs of other visitors. In May the city is a hub of activity and it really highlights why having so wide a choice of hotels is so important, to make everyone’s stay in Venice perfect for them. I really enjoyed visiting the quieter Dorsoduro district, where we have some wonderful hotels, still very centrally located but with a slightly calmer feel than the busier St Mark’s area. Visiting the Doge’s Palace was a highlight of my trip, made all the smoother thanks to my pre-booked ticket which allowed me to sweep past the long queues and straight to the dazzling artwork and architecture inside – it really is a ‘must-see’ for any visitor of the city.
To finish the holiday with a private water taxi across the lagoon really caps the whole experience off. Looking back across the lagoon, sitting comfortably on leather seats, I felt that I should definitely come back to Venice soon…