Want a good guide? DK Eyewitness Travel Guides are fantastic for European destinations. Buy one for each region you visit:
Thank you, and yes, I already have all three books…
By staying in the Piazza itself you'll be situated in a great central location for everything, even the pigeons. When the time comes, let me know and I can give you more info and deals about the city and the surrounding Veneto. To get to the island of San Lazzaro, you'll have to take Vaporetto #20. From the Piazza, take a left at the Columns of San Marco and walk by the Doge's Palace, go over 2 bridges along the Riva degli Schiavone (quayside promenade), until you get to San Zaccaria (central vaporetto station). It's located right in front of the Vittorio Emanuele II statue (king mounted on a horse). So many things to see...
Wow, George, you really do know your way around Venice! Can I put you as a contact in my phone, in case I get lost while I’m there?
I am sure you'll see all the major sites, but if you're thinking of buying fine Murano glass, I suggest Vecchia Murano Glass Factory - very close - walk along Calle Larga San Marco, the street behind St. Mark's Basilica, and it's the building as soon as you go over the bridge. You'll need a reference or appointment to get in, but if you're interested, I'll PM you the name of the guy to ask for at the door.
And when the guy opens the little peep window, do I need to give him the secret code?
Seriously, thank you for this information.
Sorry to hear about your HD camcorder. If you want a very good consumer HD camcorder, the Panasonic TM700 and TM900 have excellent sharpness, color, white balance, and are a good value. I might buy one for my mom since she still uses her Sony DV Hi8. Don't rush because there's going to be a glut of HD models due to be released. Just give yourself 1 month to get really comfy with the new unit before the trip.
My old video camera is a Panasonic, and the one I just bought and returned is also a Panasonic. But it was only $230, (which is what appealed to me when I was half-asleep). I should have realized that you get what you pay for. The camera was not bad, it had a great zoom and the images looked fine in bright light. It was the low-light quality that I didn’t like as it was grainy. That’s why I returned it. I’m not sure it is possible, but I really don’t want to pay more than $400 for a new camera because I have so many expenses happening right now too. Zoinks!
Another question for you, George: You once told me the name of a hotel in Paris that you like a lot, but I can’t remember the name. We’re still playing around with our hotel reservations for the Paris part of the trip. Can you please tell me the name of that hotel again?