Best time to go to Venice

Festa di San Marco 2019

A rose for a loved one and, of course, a regatta

Festa di San Marco in Venice - Best Time
Photo by

© Patricia Janssen

On April 25th, Venice commemorates its patron saint—St. Mark. On this date, the men of Venice honour their loved ones with a red rose. This tradition started with a rose bush that began growing near St. Mark’s grave. The holiday begins with a Holy Mass followed by festivities including dancing and live music concerts.

In addition to the festival, the Regata dei Traghetti takes place between the island of Sant’ Elena and the Punta della Dogana at the entrance to the Grand Canal. The regatta can be viewed from any of the streets along the shore from Saint Mark’s Square to Viale Giardini Pubblici. Saint Mark's Day also coincides with Italy's Liberation Day on April 25, 1945 meaning it is also a time when people honour fallen soldiers.

Another nice tradition on April 25th is for Venetian men to give a ‘bocolo‘ (a rosebud) to their loved ones as a tribute to the legend about the tragic love of humble troubadour Tancredi and Maria, Doge's daughter. Nowadays, a rosebud is offered to the women of Venice on St Mark’s Day as a symbol of love.

Festa di San Marco Map & Location

Check best times to visit
Venice