From 8 to 25 February you can attend one of the most famous events in the world: the Carnival of Venice. Let’s discover traditions and the program together!
Carnival is a traditional festival which every year takes place in the city of Venice in February. It is also one of the most known and appreciated carnivals in the world. The turnout of people from all over the country and from all over the planet is truly incredible, probably one of the periods of the year with maximum turnout in the city. Carnival is a magical period felt with much affection by tourists and all the inhabitants of the area.
The first evidence concerning the Carnival of Venice is in 1094 in a famous document that testifies to the celebrations that took place in the city. Two years later, the Senate of the Republic declared the feast on Shrove Tuesday, that is, the last day before the start of Lent, official.
Its tradition has truly ancient origins that date back to pagan rites and Christian celebrations of festivity and abundance before the start of Lent. With the fall of the great Serenissima in Venice the tradition was lost but the smaller islands continued to celebrate in great style.
In 1979 with a series of initiatives, desired by the islanders, the tradition of the carnival returned, which is now famous all over the world and a moment of great tourist flow in the city.
The program of the Carnival of Venice, opening days
The Carnival of Venice lasts about two weeks in which themed events and shows take place throughout the city: masked parades, the flight of the angel, gala dinners …
This year it will start on February 8th. During the evening, from 7pm to 10pm, the great opening show of the Carnival takes place in the Canareggio canal.
The following day the parade of the Rowing Associations of Voga alla Veneta will take place as usual. This is the typical rowing used by gondoliers to drive gondolas. Saturday, February 15 from 2.30 pm the Festa delle Marie starts; a procession that goes from San Piero di Castello to St. Mark’s Square after passing some of the most important streets in the city.
The program of the Carnival of Venice, closing days
On Sunday 16 February at noon the Angel’s Flight over St. Mark’s Square will officially open the 2020 edition of the Carnival. Maria who won the 2019 edition of the famous party will act as the angel. During the whole week other events and parades will take place throughout the city.
The Flight of the Eagle will take place on Sunday 23 and the most beautiful mask of this year will also be awarded during the event.
Many private events take place in the city: one of the most famous is the Ballo del Doge in the Scuola Grande della Misericordia.
Carnival’s typical sweets
Frittelle, galani and castagnole: these are the desserts par excellence of the Carnival of Venice.
Frittelle, similar to pancakes, can be found in many variations: with cream, eggnog, chocolate. But the original one is only with raisins and icing sugar; without creams. Galani are also found in other regions (they are called chiacchiere, frappe, crostoli) but the Venetian ones have a thin, light sheet and are ribbon-shaped and, of course, fried.
Useful information on the Venice Carnival
You can find masks all over the city but if you want to find and photograph the most suggestive ones, I suggest you go to St. Mark’s Square; it is here that people from all over the world wear really wonderful costumes. The show is free as well as the entrance to the city, as in all other periods of the year.