Perhaps you’d like to plan your visit to Venice around one of the many cultural, sporting or musical events taking place in the city each year or maybe you’ll simply discover that, by happy coincidence, you can attend one of those listed here during your forthcoming holiday.
6 January – (Epiphany) Unfortunately due to weather forecast this year the regata has been cancelled
Regata delle Befane – An ancient Italian tradition which, in Venice, involves a rowing competition along the Grand Canal (starting at San Toma and ending at the Rialto Bridge) between men dressed as the Italian witch-like character well known to all Italian children as ‘Befana’. The ‘Befane’ aim to be first to reach the giant stocking hung especially for the occasion from the Rialto Bridge.
The ‘Procession of the Magi’ – The Clock Tower (Torre dell’ Orologio), St. Mark’s Square – Have your cameras at the ready to capture this rare display, only visible at Epiphany and on Ascension Day. Hourly (and as the clock strikes the hour), the recently restored wooden figures of the Angel with Trumpet and the Three Kings (or ‘Magi’), emerge from behind the small ornate door on the left hand side of the clock tower in order to make their brief and time-honoured mechanical procession along the loggia in front of the gilded bronze statue of the Madonna and Child, before disappearing until their next appearance, through another small door on the opposite side of the tower.
From January to 13 February 2024
The Venice Carnival (Carnevale)- Ad Oriente. The extraordinary jurney of Marco Polo.
A festival famous throughout the world for its theatricality and exuberance, its masks and merriment. A time of grand balls, celebrating in the squares, elaborate disguises and time-honoured traditions harking all the way back to the 13th century.
From 17 March to 24 November 2024.
Punta della Dogana, Pierre Huyghe
From 17 March 2024 to 6 January 2025.
Palazzo Grassi JULIE MEHRETU With Nairy Baghramian, Huma Bhabha, Robin Coste Lewis, Tacita Dean, David Hammons, Paul Pfeiffer, and Jessica Rankin
From Saturday 20 April to Sunday 24 November, 2024 (pre-opening on April 17, 18 and 19)
Biennale Arte 2024 – Stranieri Ovunque – Foreigners Everywhere
As a city that has been a historical epicenter for art and culture, Venice is set to host the prestigious Biennale Arte in 2024. This international art exhibition will transform the city into a dynamic canvas for contemporary artists to showcase their talents. The Biennale Arte is a melting pot of creativity, providing a platform for dialogue and exchange of ideas that transcend borders.
25th of April.
St Mark’s Day / Festa del Bocolo – A feast in honour of St. Mark, the patron saint of Venice. On this day Venetian men give their loved ones a single red rose known as a “Bòcolo”.
May 29th- June 2nd
VENICE BOAT SHOW Arsenale, The art of shipbuilding is back home
12 May (The first Sunday after Ascension Day)
Festa e Regata della Sensa – The symbolic marriage of Venice to the sea. The Mayor of Venice, civic dignitaries and religious and military representatives leave St Mark’s Square and sail, accompanied by boats and rowers in historic costume, to the Port of S. Nicolò where they ritually throw a ring into the ocean. A laurel wreath is also laid in memory of those lost at sea. There is a ceremony of the “Wedding with the Sea” in front of the Church of S. Nicolò di Lido followed by a Regatta of the Sensa and Holy Mass at the church of S. Nicolò di Lido. A Sensa market also takes place at S.Nicolò.
19 May 2024
Vogalonga – A spectacular event attracting worldwide interest from spectators and participants alike. The vogalonga is a strenuous but friendly rowing race from St Mark’s Basin to the island of Burano returning via the Cannaregio Canal and Grand Canal before finally ending at the Punta Della Dogana. All kinds of rowing boats are involved, many from overseas. Started in 1975 by a group of rowing enthusiasts, the event is a visual feast with 1550 boats and 5800 participants taking part in 2007.
Last week of June
Festa di San Pietro in Castello – traditional festivities celebrated in this ancient parish found to the east of the city.
20 – 21 July – (Third Weekend in July)
Festa del Redentore– One of the Venetians’ most loved events which came into being as a feast to give thanks for the end of the plague of 1575. A pontoon bridge is built every year from the Zattere in Dorsoduro over to the Church of the Redentore on the island of Giudecca. At sunset on the Saturday a large number of decorated boats begin congregating in St Mark’s Basin and people line the lantern-strung waterfronts to party, eat traditional food and to wait for the fireworks to begin (a breathtaking spectacle which begins at 11.30pm and lasts until after midnight). A wonderfully atmospheric evening which is followed on the Sunday with church services and a regatta on the Giudecca Canal.
28th August – 7th September 2024
Venice International Film Festival – For cinephiles, the Venice Film Festival is a highlight of the cultural calendar. In 2024, the festival promises to once again bring together the crème de la crème of the film industry. From glamorous red carpet events to thought-provoking screenings, the festival will captivate audiences and shine a spotlight on some of the most compelling cinematic works of the year.
1 September 2024 (the first Sunday in September)
Regata Storica – This spectacularly colourful Venetian event, is a re-evocation of the welcome given to Caterina Cornaro, wife of the King of Cyprus, in 1489 after she renounced her throne in favour of Venice. There is a procession of 16th century style boats, dozens of multi-coloured and decorated craft with people in period costume and numerous races, all watched and cheered on by crowds of supporters lining the banks of the Grand Canal.
27 October 2024
21st of November
Festa della Salute – One of the most moving and best loved of all Venetian events. Every year on the 21st of November, Venetians make a pilgrimage to the plague church of Santa Maria Della Salute (St. Mary of Health) to pray to the Virgin Mary and to light candles. Gondoliers visit bringing their oars to be blessed. A pontoon bridge is built across the Grand Canal from Santa Maria del Giglio to the Salute and the huge doors of the church are opened to the city and its visitors.