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Story: This was my second visit to Venice, again, en route to another destination. With less than 24 hours here, passing through from Pula, Croatia and headed to Puglia, Venice is unique in its ability to reward in a short amount of time as much as a long one.

Having braved the crowds to see the sights on my previous visit, this time we headed straight back to my favourite area – the Jewish Quarter. An enclave that most tourists probably never see, here the pace is slow and there is space to absorb the magic of the city. Casting our social media net wide to find out a great spot to eat, we munched on cicchetti and seafood gnocchi from the fish half of Al Timon, a trattoria that Polpo has without doubt taken cues from. Its casual, fast-paced, effortless charm (full of locals and small dogs) won our hearts. After a post-dinner evening walk around the area we returned for a Fernet Branca nightcap on a buzzy pontoon on the canal filled with young Venetians.

As a photographer motivated by colour and texture, Venice is a bounteous feast. You don’t need to see the sights to feel the history of the place – every wall, doorway, window and alleyway has a story to tell; the place oozes dark tales, mystery and intrigue, at night even more so. By day, the crumbling warm, faded oranges and yellows, offset by emerald-green water and coloured boats encourage you to keep exploring, turning corner after corner to see what you might stumble across next. The city’s grandeur is surpassed only by its realness; its old-world charm evokes a certain nostalgia in me. It’s that uniquely Venice, dark, but not sordid, undertone that keeps me coming back for more.

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