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Venice Festa del Redentore: 17 - 18 of July, 2010

Venice, Italy

Would you like to experience the best of Venice? Be there there between the 17 and 18 of July, 2010. Festa del Redentore - the Festival of the Redeemer celebrating the end of the plague involves hundreds of beautifully decorated and illuminated boats full of beautifully decorated Venetians that gather around sunset, have dinner on board or beside the Giudecca canal, then watch one of Europe's best fireworks displays at 11.30pm on Saturday night. Experience this beautiful tradition.

Behind this colorful celebration, there is a grim historical event. The Redentore began as a feast to give thanks for the end of the terrible plague of 1576, that killed 50,000 people which was more than a third of the city’s inhabitants. In the same year, the Senate decided that the Doge should announce the Vow to erect a church dedicated to the Redentore (Redeemer), in return for help in ending the plague. They also promised to make a procession to the church on the third weekend of July.

The preparation for the celebration starts early in the morning (17th of July) when people begin to decorate their boats, or the small wooden terraces on rooftops from where they can admire the fireworks. At sunset, Saint Mark's basin begins to fill with up with boats of all kinds, festooned with balloons and garlands, and thousands of Venetians await the fireworks while dining on the boats. This spectacular firework display is a huge tourist attraction and a free Venice event for all to enjoy.

The next day of the festival - Sunday is devoted to religious celebrations. Holy Mass is held in the presence of the Patriarch, followed by a religious procession.

Although Venice has been rumored to be just as serene at night as she is in the day, she has been recently nurturing a growing night scene with trendy bars and music venues. Venice is said to be one of the most magical cities in the world; to be there during this festival adds yet another layer to the authentic experience.

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