Masks and Confetti

Of all the cities in Italy, Venice is one of the most famous for Carnevale. More than a week long, the entire city parties with costumes, masks, and an abundant amount of paper confetti.

The city goes all out and everybody gets dressed up.

Day 1: Leader of a group of masked men.

If you go during Carnevale, be sure to check Venice’s website for events. While I missed the kick off event, I did get to see a boat parade along the Grand Canal on the second day. Boat after boat full of devoted costumers passed by. Costume themes ranged from traditional medieval garments to superheros.

Day 2: Many rowing teams had coordinated outfits.

All the boats were decorated in some way, but there were a couple exceptional ones. Some were great because of design…

Surrounded by water, the sea is definitely important to the people of Venice.

…and some were pretty amazing because of the people in them.

Opera singers performing live as they sailed by.

Definitely pick up a mask at one of the mask shops scattered about the city. Most have both the traditional Venetian masks and also the current trendy ones.

My friend studying abroad in London who came to visit in front of the shop she bought her mask from.

And it’s much more fun to be part of the festivities and not just an observer.

Boats docking after the parade.

Of course there’s also the classic spots visitors need to see. Piazza San Marco is gorgeous in the sunlight. The clean lines of the buildings surrounding the square make a beautiful image.

Take from the terrace of the basilica.

If you have the time, I definitely suggest going to the museum in the basilica. The gold mosaics inside are incredible and the museum ticket includes a trip to the roof.

The ceiling of the church. From here the small tiles blend together to form a seemingly smooth ceiling.

If you have time, you need to go on a gondola ride. It can be a bit pricey (for two it’s normally 80 euros) but if you’re luck you might be able to negotiate a lower price (like we did). It’s definitely worth the money though. Walking through the city streets and the small ally ways is fun but the view from the canals is completely different. There’s an intimacy that you feel when gliding through one of the small canals, and there are little nooks and crannies that no sidewalk has access to.

The view is completely different when on the water and not the sidewalk.

Venice is definitely a city you need to get utterly lost in. You’ll find cute cafes and bakeries hidden in the smallest allies and beauty in the litter.

Prettiest “litter” I’ve ever seen.

Food Footnote! Because every city has something interesting about food.

While not exactly Italian, Venice, surprisingly, has some good Jewish food. A trip to what the locals call the Jewish Ghetto will reveal lots of kosher friendly restaurants and cafes.

Gam Gam is pretty well known for its food and is located in the Old Ghetto

If you’re looking for something a bit more Venetian during Carnevale, many of the events include festivals and you might find some free pasta, cookies, and drinks.

Free Carnevale sweets that taste like sugar coated heaven!

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