Venice in Winter: Misty, Magical—and Manageable

venicegondolasMost people I know who have been to Venice, Italy, are ambivalent about it. Sure, it’s nice, they say. It stinks, though. Or: Ugh, it’s so crowded. And smelly. Or: It’s super-expensive. Oh, and it smells like low tide.

What can I say? It may all be true in July and August—but nothing could have been further from our experience. That’s because Nicole and I visited Venice in winter (mid-January to be exact). And this special city has become one of my new favorite places on earth. I liken it to a wrinkled old woman wearing rouge and lipstick: aging, a little decrepit, but still unabashedly glamorous.

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Iceland in January? Absolutely!

Sun Voyager in Reykjavik, IcelandWe’ve all heard the story: Greenland is really covered in ice, while Iceland is really green, named such by Vikings to ward off potential settlers. Well, that’s a myth—in more ways than one. Iceland truly is icy, at least if you visit in winter. But that’s no reason to avoid this country in colder months, as Nicole and I learned during our stay last year during the dead of January.

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