The Venice Carnival
In Britain, the day before Lent starts is called Shrove Tuesday. To celebrate this day, we eat pancakes. However in Venice, Shrove Tuesday is even better because there is a huge carnival. The Venice Carnival takes place for two weeks before the start of Lent. The first Venetian carnival was in the eleventh century so it is a very old tradition. This year, the carnival took place at the beginning of February and I was lucky enough to go.
The whole city came alive for the carnival. Venice is most famous for making masks so the streets were filled with people wearing beautiful masks. Many people were wearing wigs and extravagant old fashioned dresses or suits. The people in fancy dress became a tourist attraction because everyone wanted to take a photo with them.
My favourite part of the carnival was the parade in Saint Mark’s Square. I heard beating drums and found hundreds of people marching through the square. They were all wearing medieval costumes. Some of the marchers were playing drums really loudly while others carried flags and threw them in the air. The last person in the parade was a man dressed as a king. The King climbed onto a stage in the square. He chose two knights to fight each other with swords. It was very exciting to watch the show!
I really enjoyed the Venice carnival because everyone got involved in this fun festival. It felt like we were all in a different era!