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Milan – Venice - 298m

So, the theory of today was a short (three hour) blast Venice from Milan where we would enjoy ‘the day off’. The usual herding of cats followed upon leaving our hotel, however at least the pressure was off not having a ten-hour drive ahead of us.

One of the most exciting prospects of the rally for me was driving to Venice….

This is a city to which I have always wanted to go and the very idea of driving there was beyond exciting.   We were booked into an out of town hotel as our fleet would simply overwhelm the city itself.

Having arrived, dumped our luggage and completed our now normal 'Wonder Woman' outfit change, we were ready to see what Venice had in store for us.

We jumped on a train and within half an hour, the train station opened into a canal awash with speed boats, gondoliers and excited tourists.

The noise and the bustle of the scene was all encompassing and filled us with fresh adrenalin from the long drive we had undertaken during the last four days… yes, it had still only been four days and Dover felt like a lifetime ago!

One of the most famous areas of the city is the world-renowned Grand Canal thoroughfare, which was a major centre of the Renaissance. Another unmistakable area is the central square in Venice, called the Piazza San Marco. Here we found a range of Byzantine mosaics, the Campanile bell and, of course, the stunning St. Mark’s Basilica.

We touched down at the Rialto Bridge and having quickly gazed at the amazing glass artwork and vivid masks went in search of dinner with our team.

Just one street back from St Mark’s is a bevvy of bustling restaurants facing little boutiques. We selected a venue which served beer in glass boots and settled in for some authentic Italian cuisine.

We treated ourselves to a water taxi back to the station which was a complete treat and assault on the senses to see into the plush waterfront properties with beautiful speed boats nestling beneath them.

We caught a four wheeled taxi back to the hotel and were greeted by our rally friends at the bar sporting various sailing hats, masks and shiny new leather handbags.

Day four could not have felt further from being a rest day, but I’m not sure anyone could ever properly rest in Venice with all it has to offer!