5 of the Best Carnival Celebrations Around the World

One of the best ways to see and experience a destination is to join them during a festival. Here are some of the best carnivals in the world that are worth participating in!

5 of the Best Carnivals in the World

Sydney Mardi Gras

The Sydney Gay & Lesbian Mardi Gras is a street parade that celebrates the LGBT pride and attracts hundreds of thousands of spectators from around Australia and internationally each year. The carnival takes over the whole of Sydney, with not only the parade down Oxford street, but also drag races held at Bondi Beach, the Mardi Gras Film Festival and many parties held around the city.

Best Carnivals in the World: Mardi Gras 2013
Mardi Gras 2013: Photo Hasitha Tudugalle / CC BY 2.0

New Orleans Mardi Gras

Celebrated the day before Ash Wednesday, Mardi Gras (Fat Tuesday) in New Orleans, celebrates the last day before the fasting of lent begins. Krewe floats are one of the crowd favourites of the parade, flinging ‘throws’ into the crowds, which consist of small toys, doubloons, strings of beads and moonpies.

Best Carnivals in the World: New Orleans Mardi Gras
Krewe of Endymion, New Orleans Mardi Gras 2014: Photo Mr. Littlehand / CC BY 2.0

Trinidad and Tobago Carnival

The Trinidad and Tobago Carnival is held on the Monday & Tuesday before Ash Wednesday. It sees islanders taking to the streets to celebrate by wearing bright colourful costumes, taking part in limbo contests, and stick-fighting competitions. The carnival dates back to the 18th Century and celebrates the last days before the fasting of lent begins.

Best Carnivals in the World: Carnival Tuesday in Trinidad and Tobago in 2015
Carnival Tuesday in Trinidad and Tobago in 2015: Photo on Flickr by Eduardo Skinner / CC BY-NC 2.0

Rio de Janeiro Carnival

The Rio de Janeiro Carnival in Brazil is a celebration that lasts four days, beginning the Friday before Ash Wednesday. Dating back to 1753, the carnival is thought to be the biggest in the world with as many as two million people hitting the streets per day to celebrate the last few days of debauchery before lent.

Best Carnivals in the World: Carnival in Rio
Carnival in Rio: Photo karendesuyo / CC BY 2.0

Apokries, Greece

There is little wonder why Dionysus, god of wine, is the centre reason for the Apokries carnival. The origins of the festival come from worship of Dionysus to promote growth from the land, but performing leaping dances, and donning costumes to ward off evil spirits. Now days, the carnival sees many grecians parading down the streets in masks and costumes, celebrating the last day before lent.

Best Carnivals in the World: Great Sunday Parade
Great Sunday Parade: Photo Gontzi via Wikimedia / CC BY-SA 3.0

One Response

  1. Avatar for IsaacLai23

    Julia Hammond

    I’d add jacmel in Haiti to that list. It’s not widely known outside the country, but it’s a passionate, colourful and lively affair and well worth seeing.
    https://juliamhammond.wordpress.com/2015/02/09/jacmel-carnival-haiti/

    Reply

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