There's no place quite like Venice. I enjoy wandering its narrow lanes and alleyways, taking in the atmosphere and architecture, picking up a gelato or snack, and doing some window shopping. Venice is an easy place in which to get lost as there seems to be no master plan to the city. But it's also a good place to get lost because you're likely to find yourself in an interesting neighborhood; as the city isn't very large, it's not difficult to find your way back to one of the major pedestrian lanes when you need to get to your hotel or destination.
There are some interesting shops in Venice that are reflective of the character of the city. Carnival is very popular here and masks are one of the only things still made in the city that you can buy and take with you as a souvenir (although I suspect many masks sold in Venice are made in China or other low cost countries, so be careful if getting a genuine Venetian mask is important to you).
Glass production in Venice was moved to neighboring Murano island centuries ago because of the fire hazard posed by the glass-making process to populous Venice. Another way of looking at it is that Murano glass is really Venetian glass, and there's a lot of beautiful glass for sale in Venice. It's not cheap, but it is colorful, interesting and well-made.
The following window provided last weekend's One Clue Mystery photo, which was recognized by the incomparable George G.
I was astounded to come across a shop specializing in the sale of mouth organs. I'm not sure if I've ever see another like it anywhere.
Some shops sold clever models and toys for kids to construct, which I thought quite imaginative.
Marzipan is a work of art throughout Italy, and Venice is no exception. Surprising how life-like these food items are, but all are just tasty almond paste.
Makes me wonder when I'll ever get back to Italy again. Hopefully soon