Burano

Posted by on Jan 9, 2014 in Personal, Travel | 0 comments

I had the opportunity to visit the island of Burano on my previous trip to Italy and it was love at first sight. The brightly coloured houses were a delight to photograph and I could have spent the whole day exploring the island (you can read about my previous visit here). Unfortunately my first visit only lasted around 2 hours, most of which was taken up by lunch in one of the many seafood restaurants. It was a great meal but didn’t allow much time for exploring the island afterwards. When planning to visit Venice on this trip, Burano was at the top of our list of places to visit and we made sure that we had plenty of time to spend on Burano. After a spectacular day weather-wise on Monday and with a favourable forecast for Tuesday, I was readily anticipating my return visit to Burano.

We awoke bright and early on Tuesday morning in order to beat the crowds to Burano and discovered that unfortunately the weather wasn’t going to be on our side – the fog had rolled in and didn’t look as if it were going to dissipate any time soon. Regardless of the fog, I was still looking forward to revisiting Burano and was keen to see the different dimension the fog would present (photographically).

It was certainly worth the early start as the island was pretty much devoid of tourists when we arrived – it was only the locals who were out and about. It didn’t take long to recognise some of the streets that I walked along on my last trip and we reached the spot where I took one of my all-time favourite photographs – one which I still use as a desktop wallpaper image today. Here is a comparison of the same scene – the one on the left was photographed in April 2010 while the one on the right was photographed yesterday:

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It was interesting to notice that a couple of the houses had undergone a colour change and obviously it wasn’t as spectacular to photograph it in the fog, but to me it didn’t diminish it too much – the colours were still just as beautiful and the fog added quite an interesting mood to the images. I hope you enjoy some of my favourite images of Burano (this is just a small selection – I took a lot of photos yesterday!)…

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I love the range of colours in this little street…

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There were lots of interesting details to photograph in addition to the houses.

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I thought that it was rather optimistic that people had hung their washing out to dry. It wasn’t at all warm and the mist added quite a lot of dampness to the atmosphere!

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You can just make out the bell tower through the fog in the following photo. The tower has quite a lean to it!

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By this stage we had been wandering around for about an hour and a half and I was starting to feel the cold. I stopped to take a photograph, took my lens cap off and as my hands were a little numb, clumsily dropped my lens cap where it bounced on the footpath and then rolled into a canal. I don’t think I could think of a better place to lose a lens cap – I’ll happily think of it sitting at the bottom of a canal in Burano (and wishing that I was still there…although not at the bottom of a canal!).

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When researching the best way to get to Burano I came across a blog post mentioning that one of Jamie Oliver’s favourite restaurants was on Burano and that it was definitely worth a visit. Fortunately the restaurant – Trattoria al Gatto Nero – was open and I was able to make a reservation for lunch. I had deliberately not eaten anything after breakfast so that I would have a good appetite for an awesome lunch. Trattoria al Gatto Nero certainly did not disappoint – if you ever find yourself on Burano, make sure you pay Gatto Nero a visit! Here’s a shot of the restaurant:

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My handsome date for lunch:

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Primi – Tagliolini alla Grancevole (Tagliolini with Spider Crab). Oh my goodness, it was delicious and worth every cent of the €$25 per person that it cost (my mouth is watering just looking at these photos…if only photos could capture scents)!

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Secondi – Grigliata Mista (Mixed Fish Grill). Also delicious and some of the best seafood I’ve ever eaten! I commented to Ian that if this was the last meal I ever eat, I’d be more than happy with that. The fish actually came out from the kitchen whole (bones and all) and the waiter very skilfully (and swiftly) deboned it for me, using only a spoon and fork. Ian recorded a video of it – hopefully he will be able to post it online so that you can marvel at the skill and precision of the waiter!

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Even the packets of sugar were customised for Trattoria al Gatto Nero!

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After lunch we did a little more exploring of Burano before we decided that we had seen (and photographed) everything and that the fog wasn’t likely to disintegrate into a beautifully sunny day (which it didn’t). Here are a few more photographs of what we saw…

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I’ll end with one of my favourite shots from the day – I love how the scene fades off into the fog.

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I loved my return visit to Burano and will happily return again some time in the future. It was a little unfortunate that the weather wasn’t quite on our side but at the same time, I loved the misty dimension that the fog provided. We didn’t have to worry about harsh shadows caused by the sun and there was no bright blue sky to compete with the gorgeous colours of the houses. Burano is a place that has well and truly captured my heart (and now also one of my lens caps!) and it was even better to explore it with Ian by my side.

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