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Is Treviso Worth visiting?
Paradoxically, I have already been to Treviso, Italy thrice so far so I will try to answer that question as fair as possible. The first time was back in 2014 when I was struggling to find a flight from Greece (specifically from the Peloponnese region, even trickier!) to London after Xmas. I was looking for a miracle, aka a last-minute cheap flight, without any luck! Well, at this time, with the flights starting from £400, taking the enormous 30-hour ferry from Patras to Venice and then a flight from Treviso to London seemed to be the only affordable option for my student despair! So, here I was, the first day (or, more accurately, night!) of 2014 sleeping on the ferry sofa, on the chairs, in the restaurant, actually everywhere apart from the floor! I befriended with truck drivers (surprisingly, we shared so many stories) and after a long long voyage, I reached Italy. With baggy eyes but full of internal (!) energy I headed to Treviso, the city that my flight would depart from!
The second time was in November 2021, when I was trying to go back to Malta amidst a pandemic, a break-up, and multiply canceled flights and plans. I was in south Italy at that time, and despite being so close to Malta I had to fly up North to Venice, then take the train to Treviso so I could fly the next day from Treviso airport back to Malta! For a mysterious reason, Treviso has something to do with my awkward flight connections… or it may just have affordable flights always!
Both times, I was excited to be here as I had already read that (breath in!) Benetton, Sisley, Stefanel, Tiramisu and Prosecco come from Treviso! Eventually, everybody knows the above-mentioned but I bet you are about to read about this Italian city for the very first time! Such a shame that Venice takes all the reputation cookies!
Treviso is an 85.000 citizens city 30 km away from Venice – this may explain why it is not that popular among tourists. Admittedly, Italy has countless beautiful cities but Treviso has a different, attractive aura (quite difficult to be conveyed through a post) even if it is not the prettiest one. The historical centre is full of narrow hidden streets, art installations, happy-staffed shops, Italian fashion (who can blame them?) and, of course, more canals!
The canals of the Sile river and the Venetian Walls (where you can walk redefining your life for the New Year!) are two extra good enough reasons for you to spend at least one day in Treviso! Don’t expect to be impressed, it is more about feeling unwind and connected to yourself while walking and observing the locals’ life happening in a slow and authentic way (no, unfortunately at the beautiful but touristic Venice you can’t do that!).
Personally, I felt a bit ”wiser” as a designer when I realised that Treviso is the home for the headquarters of clothing brands like Benetton – the locals are indeed sooo chic here! One can particularly enjoy wandering around the central Piazza Dei Signori and the Palazzo dei Trecento as much (if not more) as the strolls around the countless canals and the Venetian walls.
Although I have been to Treviso twice I have yet to manage to eat at the restaurant where Tiramisu was invented! I know, it is unacceptable (shame on me!) but in my defense, the first time the restaurant was closed because it was… 2nd January and the second time…it was closed because it was their weekly day off! The restaurant is called Le Beccherie and it’s in the historic center. On their website, you can read the history of the tiramisu and how it was invented. Can you please let me know if it is good when you go?
Isola della Pescheria is another iconic point of interest, a tiny islet hosting a fish market and some other local shops surrounding it. It is super easy to skip/ miss it since the canals and the narrow streets are blending with each other and also as I mentioned it is…tiny! A good indicator that you… found it is the below centuries-old watermill and the swans swimming around the islet.
For getting more into the city’s spirit and history one must visit at least one museum; the first choice could be the Museo Civico di Santa Caterina (= City Museum of Santa Caterina) which displays artifacts from ancient times and the Bronze Age through the Renaissance. Another choice for more contemporary art is the Museo Luigi Bailo and the very interesting Salce Collection National Museum (Museo nazionale Collezione Salce, Complesso di San Gaetano). Outside of the town the Provincial Ethnographic Museum Case Piavone is said to be worthy but unfortunately, I didn’t have the chance to visit it (maybe on my 3rd time!).
Where to stay in Treviso Italy?
Definitely inside the Venetian walls at the historic center! Although it might be pricier and with more humidity, the city after the sunset is so romantic and peaceful! Especially if you visit Treviso for one day it is really worth it to stay here!
Now, I need the help of my Italian friends! What is this obsession with eyes on trees? I stumbled upon this concept on my first visit on multiple occasions and even though I liked it a lot I didn’t get that is something common.
”The Eyes for the trees” (gli occhi degli alberi), at Piazza Universita (it has now been removed from the square 🙁 I was looking for it on my second visit but didn’t manage to find it) Pino Castagna 2003
So, you can only guess my surprise when, during my second visit, I found out there are more of these ”eyes on trees” on different versions! Please explain!
These artistic (or folklore) details are the pinch of salt in every place. The vibes of Treviso are very nice, calm, and positive. The best season to visit Treviso? Since I have been in autumn, winter and summer (yes the 3rd time it was in June 2022!) I deem the beginning/mid of autumn and spring to be the best. Summer might be hot (in June it was 30 degrees already!) and winters… yes I can tell from my experience that can be too cold.
The really cheap airport makes Treviso an ideal weekend destination and even if you plan to visit Venice, the total journey may be cheaper than a direct flight to Venice, especially in the high season. Actually, for the last few years, Treviso has been mentioned mainly just as the second airport for Venice, but it’s not fair! It’s a totally different city completely underrated and not even that close (although it is relatively easy to get to Venice from Treviso)!
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Treviso is worth visiting at least for one day but I would say 2 would be ideal. Since Venice is only 1 hour away it might be a more affordable destination to crash for a night. Tell me your thoughts! Would you be intrigued to explore Treviso?