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Spend carnival in Venice.

With Christmas just 10 days away and surely well planned and booked, you might have started thinking about the next calendar celebration, namely carnival. Famous carnival destinations include sun and fun on the beach of Rio de Janeiro and floats and dancing in the Canaries, but perhaps nowhere is carnival as stylish as in Venice, where the costumes and masks are all about chic and then about fun.

This year, carnival comes late, in the first week of March, so it’s an ideal time to go with spring on the horizon. Easy Jet (www.easyjet.com) flies to Venice, Marco Polo from London Gatwick and Bristol and Ryanair (www.ryanair.com) flies to Venice-Treviso from London Stansted and Dublin. Check out www.venere.com/Venice for cheap hotels, although the city gets packed out at this time of year. If you’re struggling to find accommodation, the same site has hotels in mainland Mestre, just back over the causeway from Venice proper.

Alternatively, if you’ve won the lottery or are looking for something plush, Special Tours (020 7386 4690, www.specialtours.co.uk) is offering a Canaletto's Venice tour next March, reports the Daily Mail. This luxury tour includes a private evening view of the interior of St Mark's Basilica with its mosaics specially illuminated and dinner in a private palazzo. The price with flights, six nights in a luxury hotel and most meals is £2,595 per person, including admission to the Basilica and the services of a guide.

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