I first came to Venice as a child for the weekend in 1966. Now on my sixth visit, it almost feels like coming home and I still make a point of doing something new each time.

We were welcomed at the divine Belmond Cipriani Hotel on the Giudecca island like old friends and into that grand old-style Italian hotel where the staff have been around for 30 years!  Our room looked over the pool which was heated and huge.

This trip saw us taking a guided walk through the Castello area and taking a lift to the top of the San Giorgio Maggiore bell tower to see the view beyond the Giudecca all the way to the open sea.

My highlight for this visit? The mediaeval banquet organised for our group in the Rialto markets – complete with flag throwers, trumpet players and a jester!

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Hotel Cipriani

Our wonderful room at Belmond Cipriani