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Venice at its finest: The Acqua Alta Bookshop

Venice is much more than gondolas The canals and the gondola rides are perhaps one of the most acclaimed attractions of this city. For a first contact, it´s a great plan to sail around the canals. However, on foot, there´s much more to discover. Every corner is a surprise and the city´s air smells of Renaissance, culture and music as well as canals when the weather gets hotter. It´s not in plain view and you get there mostly by chance on a long walk or because someone knows about it and expressly goes there. The Acqua Alta bookshop is the most fascinating one in the city. From the outside, the impression is that it´s nothing special but once you´re inside, that perception changes completely. It´s a small treasure inside the even bigger treasure that is Venice. You´d need a whole day in that bookshop to check all the books out properly because, once you´re inside, the untidy chaos draws you in. Photo vía trabalibros.com Irresistible seduction… You can spend hours and hours browsing in this peculiar bookshop. The owner is a charming and pleasant man who welcomes you to learn more about the place and its books. Any book that you want to buy, you´ll probably find it there, in the huge piles, inside bathtubs, gondolas or even a boat, all of which making up a staircase. The books that you can find here are about Venice and a thousand other topics. Also, there are in many languages. It´s a special place that when you think you´ve seen it all, the owner takes you to the second floor so you can see an...

Venice Film Festival

There are many film festivals around the world but the festival of Venice, along with the Cannes one, are the most glamorous and prestigious of all. Certainly there are others, like the ones in Berlin and Toronto, which are catching the attention of people for being truly outstanding, but they will never have the experience, quality, beauty and glamour that is the Venice film festival has got. Photo: spaceodissey The Venice Film Festival celebrated its first edition in 1932. Led by Giuseppe Volpi, a Venetian politician and businessman, the festival has been celebrated since then every year in late August and early September, while gathering the best actors, actresses, directors and producers from around the world. The festival takes place on the island of Lido, south of Venice, and is part of the Venice Biennale, which also incorporates other arts such as sculpture, painting and architecture. Finding accommodation in Venice is expensive and complicated, but you’ll always have the chance to book beautiful holiday apartments in Venice at Only apartments, they are a very comfortable and affordable way accommodation. You’ll even find accommodation in Lido itself, so you can have the film stars at the door of your rental. The prizes awarded at the festival are also among the most famous in the world, just a step below the immortals Oscars. The best film is given the Leone d´Oro, while the best director receives the Leone d´Argento. The best actor and actress, get the Volpi Cup prize, which is named after the founder of the festival mentioned above. In addition, a special award commemorating the career of an actor,...

The Carnival of Venice

In many people’s minds, the city of Venice is practically synonymous with life, revelry and fun. At no time is this more apparent than during Carnevale. Every year the city of Venice throws a major bash over a number of weeks, culminating in a final hurrah on Shrove Tuesday (also known as Fat Tuesday or Marte di Grasso). If you’ve never been to Venice, this is the time to visit – and if you know the city well, you’ll already know that Carnevale is the quintessential Venitian experience.   A little history The carnival originally was created to celebrate the victory of Serenissima (old Venice) over the Patriarch of Aquielia in 1162. Every year, the city would gather in honor of the victory, celebrating with song and dance. Over time, the festivities grew and during the Renaissance, the festival became an official event. Though Carnevale went into decline during the 18th century, the tradition was resumed in 1979 and today, over 3 million visitors flock to the city to celebrate. The events Carnevale in 2013 promises to be another fabulous affair. Events range from historic throwbacks to modern celebrations. From ice skating on Campo San Polo to musical spectaculars, from traveling theatrical performances to costume competitions, there is something for everyone to enjoy. Of course, there are a few events that you absolutely cannot miss. Whether you’re short on time and just catching the highlights, or you just want to take in the very best of Carnevale, here are our recommendations for the top Carnevale activities in 2013: The Beautiful Mask Competition This is one of the mainstays of...

The 2013 Befana Regatta in Venice

If you are bored of the usual procession of the Kings on Epiphany and are in search of new thrills, there’s a traditional Italian feast that will surely excite you. It takes place in Venice on January 6 and is called the Befana Regatta. This parade is unusual because the Magi from the East have been replaced by elderly witches who float through the city with their brooms. They can be seen on lots of gondolas and on every street corner, but they’re not there to scare the children. This celebration is quite different, really, and unknown in much of the world. The Witch Befana is very famous in Italy because she flies above the cities every year and fills the houses with gifts. Young children know this quite well. And as the story goes, this old woman led the Magi to the manger in Bethlehem and was even invited to go with them to adore the Child Jesus but chose not to. In spite of what many may think about witches and the Befana’s ragged appearance, she’s a good witch. The Befana in Italy is responsible for filling the houses with gifts, chocolates and sweets. She achieves this by going down the chimney much like Santa Claus does. But those who have behaved badly will only receive a lump of coal, so you better watch out! If you are in Venice on this day, you will see how unique this celebration is compared to what is done in the rest of the world. On the Epiphany there’s a witch race with all of the participants dressed up and...

Regata Storica in Venice

The race, which has been taking place in Venice in one way or another for thousands of years, is not the most important thing. The truly memorable thing about the Regata Storica, which will take place on this wonderful city on the Adriatic Sea on the 2nd of September, is the floating parade that precedes the competition (http://regatastoricavenezia.it/index.php?lang=en&pg=1&page=1). This explosion of colour and lavish unfolding of costumes and boats from a time that seems to enchant us and suddenly take us into a painting of Canaletto whose name we don´t remember, is the exact existing reconstruction of 16th century emblematic Venice, a Venice that aside from time and space makes us vibrate deeply and delicately with all of its wavy and striking beauty along the Grand Canal to the bays of St Marco. Classified by seniority and the type of boats, it´s not actually one race but four. The most famous, fast and thrilling of them is the one known as the Campioni su Gondolini, which ends in the spectacular floating stage, that usually rises for the occasion, of the Ca´ Foscari Palace. In the two hours that are in between of the wonderful aquatic parade and the Campioni su Gondolini, three other regattas will take place consecutively that will race on the startling marine surfaces of the Grand Canal and Rialto at unsuspected speeds. Even so, as part of the occasion of the Regata Storica, from the 29th of August until the 25th of September, you can admire a wonderful historical exhibition at the Cassa di Risparmio that documents the history of the event through a series of paintings, costumes and...

Aqualandia Jesolo Venice

Open in spring and summer and located on the island of Lido, Aqualandia Jesolo is a famous water park in Venice. Ideal for families.

Venice Carnival

The Venice Carnival is one of the most famous around the world and the city transforms into the time that it took place. Not visiting it is a sin.

International Film Festival in Venice

The International Film Festival in Venice is one of the most important in the world, and if you´re a lover of the seventh art, this is a must.