Europe

Venice Carnival: The city celebrates months after flooding

Two masked revellers pose in Venice's Riva degli Schiavoni Image copyright Reuters

Partygoers in Italy have come out in style for the annual Venice Carnival, several months after the city was hit by the biggest flooding since 1966.

The festival is famous around the world for its elaborate masks and costumes.

It marks a period of opulence before the beginning of Lent, the Christian tradition of 40 days of fasting in the run up to Easter.

Two men in costumes stand in Venice Image copyright AFP
A masked couple takes a selfie during Carnival celebrations Image copyright Reuters

The Venice Carnival is said to date back to the 11th century.

Masked revellers pose in Riva degli Schiavoni during the opening of the Venice Carnival Image copyright AFP

This year's festivities began with a water parade on the city's canals on Saturday night, which was watched by thousands of people. Its theme is "game, love and madness".

A dancer performs during a water parade marking the beginning of carnival season in Venice Image copyright Reuters

The grand opening took place on Sunday, with a variety of boats and floats making their way through the city's canals.

Venetians row during the masquerade parade on the Grand Canal during the Carnival in Venice Image copyright Reuters
The "Pantegana" (Big Rat) sails on the Grand Canal with other decorated boats for the traditional regatta which officially opens the Carnival in Venice Image copyright AFP

While most revellers opted for traditional masks, some decided to wear more modern costumes, with one group disguised as characters from Netflix's La Casa de Papel (Money Heist).

A group of revellers dressed as characters from Netflix's La Casa de Papel (Money Heist) Image copyright AFP

The Venice Carnival continues until 25 February.

A woman looks at a masked man during the Venice carnival Image copyright AFP

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