We would like to tell you a story of our awesome travel through North-East regions of Italy. Fortunately after one week of work we got a week off because of Ferragosto and we decided to travel to Venezia for two nights. Being an EVS Volunteer means to be able to deal with limited resources, so we decided so safe as much money as possible during the whole trip. We contacted the other EVS Volunteers living in Venezia and near to it for being hosted by them. And is there also an option to travel for free? Yes of course, it’s called hitchhiking! You might think that hitchhiking is not very common in Italy, but the main idea was to get to Venice without spending any money, and the ends justify the means, right?
On Monday we started our trip with a poster written Venezia on it. It took us nearly five hours and only 3 drivers (we actually knew one of them – Luca, friend of our friend Colo) to notice that it will not work out the way we wanted it to. So after getting close to Belaria and trying for more two hours without succeess we met two guys who were very kind and took us to Rimini train station. From there we had to take a train to arrive in Venice the day we planned.
Even though our plan of hitchhiking didn’t worked, at least we were able to travel 30km for free! So far you will for sure think that hitchhiking is impossible in Italy but that is not true, go on reading and you will see that it can totally work you just have to believe!
So at the end of the day we finally arrived to the beautiful city of Venezia. The guy from France Mhamad who was doing an EVS in Venice hosted us in volunteer’s apartment. First impression about Venezia we got, by having an evening walk in the city. Beautiful old houses surrounded with water, narrow streets, gondolas and a lot of tourists from dust till dawn. We met some friends from Germany and Armenia. Many of you maybe don’t know but in Venezia there is a small island called San Lazzaro, which belongs to the Armenian Catholic Order of Mechitarists established in XVI century. We went there by Vaporetto enjoying the beautiful view of Venice from the sea.
We continued our travel, experiencing hitchhiking from Venezia to the nice village of Sandrigo near Vicenza until the beautiful city of Verona. It perfectly worked in all of our way from Venezia till Verona. In Sandrigo we were warmly hosted by other EVS Volunteers – Levon from Armenia, Rafaela from Greece and Ester from Spain. On the next days we explored some other cities and towns near Sandrigo. We have been in Vicenza, Marostica and in Bassano del Grappa where we met a girl from Sweden Mathilda who also was doing there an EVS.
The final point of our traveling was Verona where we were visiting some other volunteers in Verona, Bruno from Portugal and Ivo from Bulgaria. Together with our friends from Sandrigo we went by our usual way of traveling-hitchhiking, we got from Sandrigo to Vicenza, spend there some hours and then moving on to Verona. There we had a great evening at a Ferragosto party in a Bar where the EVS Volunteers actually live.
Finally, on the way of arriving at home, all of us agreed that we had a wonderful experience in the North-East of Italy, we met great people, we saw amazing architecture of Italy, and got a lot of energy and unforgettable memories. For the experience of hitchhiking we can conclude that everything you need to do a hitchhike is a piece of paper and a pen, a friendly appearance and a nice smile can help as well. Remember you should not travel alone (especially as a girl) just to keep safe. Also it is easier to hitchhike with two persons than with three, because many cars might not have space to stop for three persons. Please never enter a car that you are not feeling comfortable with, it does not matter that they have stopped saying no is always a possible option. Still you don’t have to be afraid of hitchhiking it is a great experience, just enjoy meeting new interesting people and geting a ride for free!
Ciao, ci vediamo!