After a lot of communication, I finally wore Gianluca down, and he agreed to an out-of-season topa tour. Thank you to Peter and Lou, who told us about this on a travel forum.
A topa is a working boat in Venice, the type you’ll see doing the hard stuff, transporting goods of all descriptions around the canals that are the streets and alleys of Venice.
Here are some images of Gianluca.
This Carabiniere featured in our trip, but I’m sworn to silence about the details, to protect the innocent!
This is the basic route we followed, during the 2 hours (plus) trip.
Here are some photos of the views we would never have seen when exploring the city on foot.
And, then, the lovely surprise of the trip. The tide level co-operated and we went right under Chiesa San Stefano. Gianluca and I hadn’t said anything, just in case we couldn’t do it. Now, the boatload of adults really transformed into happy, laughing school kids. (Except for one, who was a tad claustrophobic.)
To my intrepid companions Karen and Mike, Susie and Mark, Christy, Linda and Mary, thanks for being such enthusiastic travellers. Here’s to the next topa trip!
To Gianluca, thank you for being such a good-natured, patient, helpful boat pilot.
We truly enjoyed this excursion to the hilt, and we’re grateful that our parents signed the permission slip!