Discovering Sottomarina and Chioggia with my Kids

12 years
9 years
5 years
2010-10-07 to 2010-10-08

Sottomarina is a picturesque and relatively quiet coastal city, which is located just below Venice, about an hour's drive away. Its beaches, in season, populate many tourists (mostly Italian tourists) and therefore are very organized and include restaurants, clubs, volleyball and soccer courts, and often even playgrounds.

Despite the fact that it's right on the beach, the humidity isn't felt at all and the weather is very convenient.

In Sottomarina they don't speak English. Anyone who comes to visit will have to get by with Italian. It's not difficult, because the residents are nice and welcoming, and will do anything to understand what you want from them and how they can help you.

In Sottomarina lunch is sacred and life actually begins after four in the afternoon. Then the Italian are revealed with all their glory. People who love life and pleasures. Cafes and pizzerias are filled, the (wonderful!) ice cream shops work at full speed, and the streets are flooded with cyclists. An amusement park is opened on the beach every evening. At first glance it seems quite small, but when you go inside you find amazing facilities. Since we stayed there right at the beginning of the end of their season, we received an almost private amusement park, we didn’t stand in line and had a wonderful time.

The city is lively on Friday and Saturday evenings, mostly beach activities, parties, concerts, restaurants and wine until late at night. In the middle of the week everything is quiet so we could sleep until nine-ten in every morning without any interruption.

Chioggia, also called Little Venice, is located on the other side of a small bridge, like a separated neighborhood and it's some sort of a pleasant picturesque enclave of Sottomarina. It has canals and small bridges, like Venice, and the smell of salt water and fish reminds you all the time you are actually in the sea. Narrow alleys, colorful shutters, small fishing boats and quiet delicious restaurants which, by the way, are also closed at noon. This old town is harboring buildings and churches built in previous centuries, and in their time it was a well-known fishing center in Italy. It boasts the oldest clock tower in the world - since 1386, museums and other architectural masterpieces.

We weren't looking for things to do there proactively. We lived there for two weeks and tried to simply experience life in the real and simple Italy. We haven't heard a single word in Hebrew or English, we learned the strange Italian schedule (even the park and playground are closed to visitors at seven o'clock), did some shopping at the supermarket, we discovered new vegetables and fruits at the grocery shop, spent time at the beach, played in the park, walked the dog and ate mountains of ice cream. Everything was available, close and cozy. We didn't need to struggle to find activities or interest.

Sottomarina also served us as a very convenient departure point to Venice. One bus, one hour's drive brought us, whenever we wanted, right to the heart of Venice. That's why we chose to settle there. Instead of living in Venice itself, with the budget involved in staying in the most romantic city in the world, we chose a quiet, luxurious and much cheaper town.

Sample prices:

An equipped apartment, two bedrooms, on a second line from the beach and a short walk away from everything else, 280 Euro per week.

A round trip bus to Venice - 10 Euro each (free for children under one meter)

Six bottles of water - 1.14 Euro

Ice cream – 2 Euro for two balls

Espresso/Macchiato - 0.9 Euro

Wine – 0.9 Euro and up to 60-70 Euro for a bottle.

Beach entrance – free

Amusement park – 20 Euro for 13 rides, a parent who joins as a chaperone doesn't pay.

Article Type: 
General Destination Info


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