Basilica del Redentore, known to everyone as The Redentore, is the pearl of Giudecca island. Each year it is home to the Venetian Thanksgiving or Festa del Redentore. On this page, you can discover why this event is so special to the locals. The Redentore is one of the most magnificent Venice churches, filled with works by renowned Venetian painters.
Getting to the church
The Redentore is easy to find on the Venice map. Look out for Giudecca island, where the church stands, overlooking the beautiful Canale della Giudecca. To get here from the city, hop on a vaporetto. The closest stop to the church is, surprisingly, Redentore.
History & architecture
Due to a devastating plague outbreak of 1575-1577, the Senate of the Venetian Republic decided to build the Redentore. It was a votive offering, done in the hope of ending the epidemic. Thanks to this, it is one of a few votive Venice churches. Among these are Santa Maria della Salute, San Sebastiano, and others. The architect, who designed the church, was Andrea Palladio. He was the architect behind San Giorgio Maggiore, a church on a nearby island of the same name. Sadly, Palladio died of the plague before completing the Redentore. Therefore, Antonio da Ponte finished the work according to the original design.
The Basilica del Redentore is a true Venice Renaissance masterpiece. Its white marble facade, inspired by the Pantheon of Rome, showcases the architect's maturity. The two cylindrical bell towers enhance the dome with a statue of the Redeemer. The plan of the church is rectangular but resembles a Latin cross. The church has a single nave with three chapels on each side. A lot of light enters through the windows, giving life to the magnificent interior of the church.
Inside the church
At The Redentore, art enthusiasts can truly indulge. Here you will find the works of prominent Venetian painters like Tintoretto, Paolo Veronese, and Alvise Vivarini. One of the most magnificent pieces on display is Tintoretto's 1588 Flagellation of Christ. Another incredible masterpiece is Paolo Veronese's 1560 Baptism of Christ. The church features quite a few notable art pieces, so it's best to take your time exploring them.
Festa del Redentore
Every year on the third Sunday of July, Venice celebrates the famous Festa del Redentore. This festival is the oldest and one of the most cherished among Venice events. Its primary meaning is giving thanks for the city's victory over the plague. The Basilica del Redentore played an essential part in Venice's history and is now a part of the festival. During the festival days, a pontoon bridge connects Zattere with the church. Locals and tourists can cross this bridge to see a special service.
Things to do in the area
Giudecca is a perfect place to escape the crowds and enjoy authentic Venice. And it's not only about exploring the basilica! You can visit Casa dei Tre Oce Gallery or the Santa Maria della Presentazione church. In this area, you can do some waterfront dining and enjoy the view of the city or visit a few local craft shops. Looking at the Venice map, you'll see that Giudecca is close to San Giorgio Maggiore. Take a vaporetto and get off at S. Giorgio to explore yet another site off the beaten path.