Enjoy Famous Venice Carnival 2024

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Venice Carnival 2024 - Italy's biggest cultural festival is here!

If you think Venice is magical, just wait till you see it all gorgeous and buzzing for one of Italy's grandest yearly carnival! It's a kaleidoscope of vibrant colors with the Venetian masks, dazzling costumes and fancy masquerade balls. The Venice Carnival of 2024, honors Marco Polo's legendary journey on the 700th anniversary of his death. The theme focuses on travel, discovery, and other fascinating worlds. Whether it's your first visit or not, our Venice Carnival guide is here for you. The fun lasts for twelve fantastic days! So, grab your mask, and let's head to the Floating City!

Things to know

  • Dates: 27 January to 13 February, 2024.
  • Location: Venice, Italy
  • Theme: "To the Orient – Marco Polo's Amazing Journey," celebrating the legendary traveler.

Why visit Venice during Carnival?

Global gathering
  • Magical atmosphere: Venice transforms into a fairytale world during Carnival. It's uber exciting with the mysterious figures donned in beautiful masks and colorful costumes cover the streets.
  • Time travel: Venice Carnival, rooted in the 12th century, has a rich history of celebrating Venetian victories. Despite facing decline and prohibition, the Carnival saw a revival in 1979. It's a celebration of Venice's cultural legacy in a modern context.
  • Exclusive masquerade balls: There's nothing re-defining the elegance and sophistication than the Italian masquerade balls. Grab this rare opportunity to revel in luxury, dance to melodious tunes, and create timeless memories in a glamorous setting.
  • Global gathering: Connect with like-minded travelers from around the world, adding a global touch to your Carnival experience.
  • Awesome parades: Be part of spectacular parades, from gondola processions on the Grand Canal to the iconic Flight of the Angel. Every bit of it is a sight to behold!

What to see & do at Venice Carnival?

Attend the grand opening ceremony

Attend the grand opening ceremony

Head to St. Mark's Square on 27 January, 2024, from 7 PM to 10 Pm for the grand opening where they kick off the festivities in fashion. You won't want to miss the traditional Venetian Water Festival at Rio de Cannaregio.

See the iconic Flight of the Angel

See the iconic Flight of the Angel

Be sure not to miss the breathtaking "Flight of the Angel" at the Venice Carnival on 28 January, 2024, from 10:45 AM to 12 PM. See a figure soaring from the bell tower to Tre Archi Bridge, marking a symbolic and exhilarating start to the carnival celebrations.

La Festa delle Marie Parade - Venice Carnival

Join the La Festa delle Marie Parade

Be a part of the La Festa delle Marie Parade on 3 February, 2024, from 2:30 PM to 4 PM. It's a vibrant procession from San Pietro di Castello to St. Mark’s Square, filled with lively energy, stunning costumes, and the unique charm of the Venice Carnival.

Watch the Mestre Carnival Street Show

Watch the Mestre Carnival Street Show

Make sure to catch the Mestre Carnival Street Show at Piazza Ferretto on 3 February, 2024, from 4:30 PM to 6:30 PM. It's a vibrant display of street performances that adds an extra dose of fun to your Venice Carnival experience!

Participate in the Best Mask Contest

Participate in the Best Mask Contest

Bring your elite artistic flair at the daily Best Mask Contest, running from February 3 to 13. Strut your beautiful mask at Ca' Vendramin Calergi Palace and St. Mark’s Square for a chance to shine. Winners secure a spot in the finals – unleash your creativity and dazzle the judges!

Experience the Flight of the Eagle

Experience the Flight of the Eagle

Witness the exhilarating Flight of the Eagle at Venice Carnival at the Campanile of St. Mark’s Square on 4 February, 2024, from 12 PM to 1 PM – a daring descent from St. Mark's Campanile, adding a unique and thrilling spectacle to the festivities.

Take Part in the Burano Carnival

Partake in the Burano Carnival

Indulge in a joyful recreation of Doge Vitale Michiel II's victory over Patriarch Ulrico of Aquileia and rebellious feudatories. On 8 February, 2024, from 3 PM to 10 PM, the island transforms into a lively stage for historical pageantry, blending tradition with a burst of colors.

Catch the Marghera Float Parade

Catch the Marghera Float Parade

Join the excitement of the Marghera Carnival Float Parade on 10 February, 2024, at Piazza Mercato. Marvel at creatively decorated floats, snazzy costumes, and a burst of imaginative themes parading through the buzzing streets. It's a colorful expression of community spirit!

Witness the Flight of the Lion

Witness the Flight of the Lion

The Flight of the Lion is a captivating finale to the Venice Carnival on 13 February, 2024, at 5 PM, at the Campanile of St. Mark’s Square, a symbolic figure of a lion, representing Venice's emblem, takes flight into the sky, bidding farewell to the vibrant celebrations until the next year.

Don't Miss Il Ballo del Doge 2024

Don't Miss Il Ballo del Doge 2024

Get set for the grand Il Ballo del Doge 2024! On February 10 at Scuola Grande della Misericordia, it's not just a party; it's an artistic & elegant extravaganza. Join a global gathering in lavish costumes for an unforgettable Carnival experience!

Know before you go to Venice Carnival


Dates: 27 January - 13 February

Key events:
Flight of the Angel: 28 January (10:45 AM – 12:00 PM)
Flight of the Eagle:
4 February (12 PM - 1 PM)
Grand Opening: 27- 28 January (7 PM – 10PM)
Festa delle Marie Parade: 3 February (2:30 PM – 4 PM)
Official Venice Carnival Dinner, Show, and Ball: 15-25 February
Best Mask Contest: 3- 13 February (11 AM – 1 PM)
Il Ballo del Doge 2024: 10 February (3 PM - 5 PM)

Suggested duration: Afternoons to evenings, 3 - 4 days.

St. Mark's Square

Venice Carnival 2024 key locations:

  • St. Mark's Square: The Square is hub for major events - Opening ceremony, Best Mask Contests, and Grand Costume Mask Contest Awards Ceremony.
  • Campanile of St. Mark's Square: The bell tower is the launch site for spectacular flights - Angel, Eagle, and Lion.
  • Rio de Cannaregio: Hosts the traditional Venetian Water Festival.
  • Piazza Ferretto: Venue for the Mestre Carnival Street Show.
  • Burano: Carnival on the Burano island and Grand Final Qualifications for Best Mask Contest.
  • Piazza Mercato: Marghera Carnival Float Parade.
  • Ca’ Vendramin Calergi: Regata Sprint di Carnevale, finishing at Rialto.
  • Streets of Zelarino: 53rd Edition of the Children’s Carnival.
  • Information centers
  • Rest areas
  • Security measures
  • Food stalls
  • Restrooms
  • First aid stations
  • Venetian mask shops
  • Public transportation
  • Venice Carnival guide services
  • Lost and found
  • For unique and intricate masks, shop early. Venice Carnival is known for its stunning masks, and the best ones often sell out quickly.
  • While St. Mark's Square is iconic, venture into less crowded areas for a more intimate experience. Enjoy the Carnival away from the bustling crowds.
  • If you plan to attend specific events or attractions, book tickets in advance. Popular destinations can sell out quickly.
  • Embrace the Carnival spirit with a cool costume. Traditional Venetian costumes can be rented from ateliers in the city.
  • Take a break from the festivities to savor some authentic Venetian dishes at local eateries. Get a Venetian frittella, a raisin-studded fried doughnut.
  • Not all Carnival events require tickets. Keep an eye out for free street performances, parades, and open-air celebrations.
  • The final weekend is the most popular, so be prepared for large crowds. If you prefer a more relaxed experience, consider visiting earlier in the Carnival season. Also, beware of scammers and pickpockets.
  • Venice Carnival at night is a dream! Experience the charm of figures in elaborate costumes wandering through softly lit streets.
  • Osteria Enoteca Ai Artisti: Enjoy traditional Venetian dishes and a diverse wine selection in this charming osteria.
  • Trattoria da Remigio: Indulge in hearty seafood dishes at this rustic trattoria with outdoor seating.
  • Al Nono Risorto: Savor delicious pizza and pasta at this family-run restaurant.
  • Caffe Chioggia: A delightful dining near Doge's Palace with great music and a fantastic atmosphere at Caffe Chioggia.
  • Bar Mio: Unwind after the hearty Carnival at the lively Mio with a drink, just 500 meters from Doge's Palace.

Frequently asked questions about Venice Carnival tickets

Do I need tickets to attend Venice Carnival?

While some outdoor events are free, many of the grand balls, concerts, and exclusive parties require tickets. Also, if you're visiting Venice during Carnival, it's advised to book your tickets in advance for the attractions that you're planning to see.

How do I purchase tickets for Venice Carnival events?

Tickets can be purchased online through designated platforms on site or via authorized ticketing platforms. Early booking ensures availability and sometimes offers discounts.

How do I redeem online tickets for Venice Carnival?

Follow the instructions provided upon purchasing tickets online. Ensure you have printed or electronic copies of your tickets, and bring any required identification for entry.

What is the Venice Carnival?

The Venice Carnival is a centuries-old celebration that transforms the city into a mesmerizing stage of vibrant costumes, masks, and festivities. Dating back to the 12th century, it's a unique blend of history, culture, and revelry.

When does it take place each year?

The Venice Carnival typically kicks off in late January and lasts until early February, with the exact dates varying. In 2024, it spans from January 27th to February 13th.

What makes the Venice Carnival unique compared to other carnivals worldwide?

What sets Venice apart is the elaborate, artisan-crafted masks, bringing an air of mystery. The city itself becomes a living canvas, blending its rich history with the excitement of masked balls, parades, and enchanting events.

What are the historical origins and cultural significance of the Venice Carnival?

Originating in the 12th century, the Carnival began as a victory celebration. Over time, it evolved into a period of indulgence before Lent, allowing Venetians to momentarily escape societal norms and embrace anonymity.

What are the main events and activities during the Venice Carnival?

The calendar is packed with events like the Flight of the Angel, grand parades, masquerade balls, and the Best Mask Contest. Each day offers a new spectacle, blending tradition with contemporary celebrations.

How can I participate in the masquerade tradition during the carnival?

Embrace the spirit by donning a mask and costume. You can purchase or rent them from local ateliers. It's not mandatory, but it adds to the enchantment.

Are there specific dress code requirements for attendees at the Venice Carnival?

While there's no strict dress code, costumes, especially masks, are highly encouraged. It's a chance to let your creativity shine and be part of the living art around you.

What are the most iconic Venetian masks, and where can I buy or make my own?

Masks like the Bauta, Colombina, and Medico della Peste are iconic. You can find them in local shops or attend mask-making workshops to craft your own unique piece.

Are there any age restrictions for attending certain events or activities at the carnival?

Generally, most events are family-friendly, but it's good to check individual event details. Some evening affairs may have age restrictions.

What are the best vantage points for watching the Venice Carnival parades?

St. Mark's Square and the Grand Canal offer prime viewing spots. Arrive early to secure a good position and soak in the carnival atmosphere.

Can I learn how to make Venetian masks for the carnival?

Absolutely! Many workshops in Venice offer mask-making classes. It's a fantastic way to engage with the Carnival's artistic side and create your personalized mask.

How can I navigate the crowds and get the most out of my Venice Carnival experience?

Arrive early to key events, explore lesser-known areas, and consider a vantage point along the Grand Canal for parades. Patience is key – embrace the lively atmosphere!

Are there family-friendly events and activities during the Venice Carnival?

Absolutely! Look out for events like the Flight of the Angel and the Best Mask Contest, suitable for all ages. St. Mark's Square is a great family-friendly hub.

What traditional Venetian foods and drinks should I try during the carnival?

Indulge in Venetian delights like frittelle (fried doughnuts), cicchetti (small tapas-style dishes), and don't forget to pair them with a glass of local prosecco or a Venetian spritz.

What transportation options are available to and from Venice during the carnival?

Trains, buses, and boats are common modes of transport. Plan your arrival and departure in advance and consider staying centrally for easy access to events.

How early should I plan and book my trip to Venice for the Carnival?

It's advisable to start planning and booking your trip to Venice for the Carnival a few months in advance. This allows you to secure accommodations, especially if you have specific preferences or want to stay in a central location. Additionally, planning ahead gives you the opportunity to book tickets for any exclusive events or masquerade balls you may wish to attend, ensuring you have a seamless and enjoyable experience during this vibrant celebration. Venice attracts a large number of visitors during the Carnival, so early planning ensures you don't miss out on the enchanting festivities.