During our honeymoon, we visited Venice, Italy, where we took a kayaking tour of the canals with René Seindal of Venice Kayak (www.venicekayak.com).
René was a fantastic guide, that really knows the history of the region, and hearing these stories was fascinating. It was also nice to know that he knew the rules of the "road" in the busy waterways. I was amazed at the amount of boat traffic. Coming from a small fishing village in Newfoundland, where there is next to no boat traffic, only the scatter fishing boat, it was crazy to see all these ferries, gondolas, personal boats, water taxis, etc.... It seemed like chaos, but when i thought about it, they were much like any city street; busy with traffic, but somewhat organized if the drivers know what they are doing.
If you ever end up in this part of the world, it is well worth your while to do this. It is truly a unique way to see the city. It gets you away from the crowded piazza's and streets, and is something different than the traditional gondolas.
It was an interesting setup to get into and out of our kayaks, but Rene came up with a workable solution, a floating beach and a ladder. It seemed a bit dodgy at first, but it works quite effectively.
Rock over London, Rock on Chicago