Feast of the Ascension 2017

The marriage of the sea enchantes again- on 28th May 2017

The Festa della Sensa is one of the city’s best known festivals that bring to life its thousand year history and its close ties to the sea and the art of “Voga alla Veneta” rowing. The Sensa (Ascension Day) Festival was celebrated by the Venetian Republic on the day of Christ’s Ascension.

Sensa is the Venetian dialect word for ascension. Venice began to celebrate Ascension Day again in 1965, with a water parade of traditional rowing boats from San Marco to Lido, leaded by the “Serenissima” boat, where the mayor and the other authorities take place and where the “Wedding with the Sea” is celebrated again: the evocative ceremony includes the throwing of a symbolic ring in the water and a High Mass in the church of San Nicolò. The event goes far beyond mere re-evocation: the Gemellaggio Adriatico ("Adriatic twinning") project now links the Serenissima Republic with a city or a geographic area that has had a special historical relationship with Venice, joined in a bond of culture, love of the sea and the activities connected with the sea. In addition to this, the Festival is the occasion for the award of the "Premio Osella d'Oro della Sensa", promoted by the Comitato Festa della Sensa, which is given to public bodies, institutions and private citizens that have given lustre to the city by means of their activities in the spheres of culture, crafts and trade. And on Sunday, Venetian rowing lovers participate to the water parade and to the other events organized by the Coordinamento delle Società Remiere di Voga alla Veneta. The programme is completed by the Sensa Market at the Church of San Nicolò on Lido, by the Venetian style rowing races and by many other events.

The Sensa today is a great time for meeting and fully realising the value of Venetian history and traditions: it is the festival of the city itself and its relationship with the sea.

Venezia, Feast of Ascension Ceremony


9.00am – Boats gather in the Basin of San Marco
9.30am – Departure of the water parade towards S. Nicolò del Lido
10.30am – Ceremony of the “Wedding with the Sea” in front of the Church of S. Nicolò del Lido
11.00am – Concert by Coro Serenissima in front of the curch San Nicolò del Lido
11.30am – Holy Mass at the church of S. Nicolò di Lido

Regattas of the Sensa

- women’s twin-oared mascarete regatta
- Regatta on 4 oars gondolas
Regattas of the Rowing Season organized by the Municipality of Venice


Festa della Sensa Venezia

Feast of the Ascension

from 27 May 17 to 28 May 17
Bacino di San Marco
Lido di Venezia
Church of San Nicolò - Lido

Each year Venice beckons millions of tourists attracted by world-famous events. The most prominent among these is the Festa della Sensa (Feast of the Ascension). Tourists relive the age-old...

Antonio Stom, La partenza del Bucintoro, olio su tela, post 1729?

Venice and the sea

24 May 17
Querini Stampalia Foundation
up to 20€

Fondazione Querini Stampalia, Wednesday 24th May, 5 pm 

One of the most ancient celebrations that renovates, year after year, the millennial bond between Venice and the sea, in which...