Venice is famous for its carnival and festivals, but the oldest continually celebrated date in the Venetian calendar is the Festa del Redentore - the Feast of the Holy Redeemer - held annually on the third weekend of July.
The festival began in the 16th century, to mark the end of the terrible plague of 1576, which killed 50,000 people, including the great painter Titian. As a gesture of thanksgiving, the Doge commissioned the architect Palladio to build a church on the Giudecca island. It was consecrated in 1692 and so that the Doge could walk there in procession, a temporary bridge across the canal was made of barges.
This bridge-building tradition continues today. For several days before the festival, the pontoons are moved into place, and by Friday (above), thousands of people are able to stream across it to the church.