A tradition started to mask social classes, Carnevale is an annual festival in Venice that draws millions of visitors each year. Lasting from Ash Wednesday to Mardi Gras, it's a time to celebrate before the fasting and piety of Lent. Each year, both residents and tourists alike don festive garb and ornate masks to parade around the city. The beautiful canals and idyllic streets were crowded with feathers, tophats and poofy dresses. The costumes are just as elaborate as the parties are wild. The city hosts concerts, parades and other festivities.
Most Carnevalians just a don a mask with their outfits, but those in full-fledged 17th century costumes are the real eye-catchers. They pose for photographers in the same position for most of their duration in Venice as crowds swirl around them. If you're ever in Europe in late February, Carnevale is a must. The costumes, crowds and atmosphere make Carnevale a fantastic glimpse into the traditions of Italy.
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