The heart of the Veneto region is a straight line due west from Venice taking in Padova and Verona before arriving at Lake Garda. We have more itineraries for you below.
Ever wonder, amid all the festivities, exactly why you’re celebrating Carnival? The word carnival actually derives from the Latin term Carnevale, meaning “farewell to meat”. Simply put, Carnival has come to represent a sort of ‘last hurrah’ before a long period of self-denial.
Although the holiday most likely began in pre-Christian times with the ancient Roman traditions of Saturnalia and Bacchanalia, Carnival is currently known as the days preceding the Christian period of Lent, consisting of forty days of fasting during which the consumption of animal products was strictly forbidden. As a result, universal feasts were held in order not to waste any perishable foods and drink that were about to be banned, releasing an euphoric atmosphere of giddy over-indulgence before the sober austerity that was about to descend.
Today’s most famous international Carnival traditions of parades and masquerade balls can be traced back to their origins in medieval Italy, unique practices that different geographical regions proudly uphold to this day, including extravagant masks in Venice, paper-mache floats in Sicily, and even orange throwing in Ivrea. Prime time to experience local events runs from mid-February to early March, and accommodations usually fill up quickly.
If you like snacking on the traditional cicchetti of Venice, then you are going to love the new bistro of Hotel Danieli. Formally named the 'The Egg Nicola Batavia @ Hotel Danieli Restaurant', it is a collaboration of Chef Nicola Batavia and Executive Chef Dario Parascandolo of the Terrazza Danieli.
'Cicchetti' is derived from the Latin word 'ciccus' meaning 'very small' and they are typically enjoyed with a glass of wine. The simpilicity of such dishes is represented by the 'Egg' concept and expect to find a selection of cicchetti made with the freshest local ingredients to be enjoyed with sommelier selected wines or artisan beers made in Italy. Why not ask for a signature Egg cicchetti.
You have to want to visit Belluno, or Belun in local dialect. But if you do you will be genuinely charmed by 'The Resplendent City', a reference to the Celtic word 'bellodonam' for the hills dominating the skyline. It might also be a reference to the sparkling waters which flows down below in the Piave valley or even Beleno (Belenus), the Celtic God of the Sun.
If you want a break from all the water and tourists in Venice, then head inland for a day tour of some fabulously overlooked Venetian towns and sights.Of course, you can't not go to Venice, but do consider a long weekend or a couple of days in the neighboring countryside and towns just 30 minutes or half an hour away.
Before travelling to the Belluno Dolomites bordering Trentino, we were curious to find out if Alpine villages are still as you imagined them as a kid, or if they have changed beyond all recognition. Fortunately, we own an old children's illustrated encyclopedia dating from the mid 1960's which lists 12 giveaway clues. We went looking for them, and the images below reveal what we found.
The Redentore or Redeemer Festival in Venice takes place on the Saturday preceding the 3rd Sunday of July and celebrates the construction of the church by Palladio to honour the Redentore 'Saviour' who freed Venice of a horrible plague in 1577. Ever since the Venetians celebrate this most famous of nights with an hour long firework display over the city.
A floating bridge is also constructed over the Giudecca Canal connect to the Redentore Church. Nowadays the bridge is no longer built of the traditional gondolas, but heavier barges to hold thousands of people as the sun sets over the city. It is one of Venice's most important events, always accompanied by joyful old songs and Venetian food served from stalls along the waterfront.
'Brindiamo con Primavera del Prosecco' or 'Let's raise a glass to a Prosecco Spring' and who can say fairer than that. This firmly established Spring wine event takes place from the first week of March to the first week of June.
It consists of a series of related initiatives across the traditonal heart of the territory of prosecco production. The towns involved include Vidor, Santo Stefano, Guia, San Giovanni, Col S. Martino, Villa di Cordignano, S. Petro di Barbozza, Fregona, Saccol, Miane, Refrontolo, Combai, Vittorio Veneto, Colfosco, S. Pietro di Feletto and Conegliano.
Every March in Lazise, one of those small towns which sit snugly on the shores of Lake Garda, a couple of interesting gastronomic events take place. The first is the 'Campionato del Risotto col Tastasàl' while the second is 'Alla scoperta dei formaggi d'Italia'. We briefly describe both below and list a series of food events throughout the year you may wish to look out for if you visit the region. Even if these don't interest you, the video below demonstrates what an atmospheric setting for any event Lazise actually is.
Palazzo della Giustizia or 'della Ragione' was built in 1218-19 and is one of the most majestic and important sites in Padova. You can't miss it if you find yourself in the market squares of the city. The ground floor still accommodates shops and workshops; the northern section of which was once occupied by money lenders and the south western one by the old prison which expanded to the nearby Palazzo delle Debite.
The first floor, which is reached from four outside staircases, was initially composed of three large halls where the judges held court. The smaller rooms housed the offices of important city officials such as the tax collector, and the chapel of S. Prosdocimo.