When we think about carnival, almost everyone thinks about the famous carnival of Rio de Janeiro in Brazil where the best samba schools compete on dance competitions, or the most traditional Venice carnival with the famous angel’s flight at St. Mark’s Square.
However, where does the word Carnival come from? And above all, for those who wish to travel, where is it celebrating?
Spain, a country where life is always full of festivals and events, will not miss the Carnival, of course. Distractions, good humour and interest, invade the streets of Cadiz, Santa Cruz de Tenerife, several cities in Galicia and in many other regions. See it for yourself!
The word carnival comes from the Latin “carnem levare” or “remove the meat” and it was used to signal the last banquet just before the beginning of abstinence and the fasting period of Lent. The celebration of the Christian tradition, which has its origins in older rites, has given people the opportunity to transgress social rules for a few days, letting go of the joke. Men disguised themselves as women and vice versa, the poor as rich, the rich as buffoons, and so on.
Everything has become simpler and more real thanks to the use of masks, which always evoke the magic of the past. During the carnival the fertility of the earth was also celebrated, which began to awake after winter sleep.
Although over time the meaning of the Carnival has changed a little compared to the past, its recipe remains the same, or a good dose of madness veiled by a mask.
And do not forget that every joke is worth it at Carnival!
THE CARNIVAL IN SPAIN: TOP 3 DESTINATIONS
The Spaniards are known around the world for his joie de vivre, his carelessness and his penchant for celebrating and enjoying life. But not everyone knows that even the carnival on the Iberian Peninsula and in the islands is very popular and definitely worth a visit. Celebrated since the Middle Ages and interrupted only during the Franco period, the tradition resumed in 1976, confirming once again the Spanish spirit of Spanish.
Here are the 3 best destinations for Carnival in 2018:
The Carnival of Santa Cruz has nothing to envy to other carnivals in the world and takes place in the Caribbean style with exotic costumes, samba contests, parades, parties, music and floats. It is not a coincidence that the city is twinned with Rio de Janeiro (Brazil). In addition to the Tenerife Carnival, there are incredible festivals in the other islands of the Canary Islands.
The carnival of Cadiz is one of the largest in the world, considered by many as the most extravagant holiday of the Peninsula. The atmosphere is overflowing with ironic and critical music and songs called “chirigotas” and dozens of bands perform and compete for the Falla Theater. You can choose between two fashion shows, the Great Parade and the Funny Parade, all accompanied by various gastronomic events for the “streets” of the city.
For those who wish a carnival a little different from the others, with more traditional representations, the green region of Galicia is made for you. Indeed, in each village, carnival parties are organized with different themes, characterized by a great Galician spirit typical of these popular festivals. Although there are several places that host the carnival, the most interesting takes place in Laza with the famous “peliqueiros” whose elegant outfits weigh up to 20 kg.
In addition to the world-famous carnivals that attract tens of thousands of tourists every year, there are others less known, but no less exciting. To name just one in Alicante with parades, floats, masks and burial sardines. All accompanied by so much joy.
And if you like parades, lights and entertainment, you cannot miss the “summer version” of the Alicante carnival, or the San Giovanni night bonfires (San Juan bonfires) that have held every year between June 20th and 24th. The event, in which giant paper, shaped in figures called “ninots”, ends with festivities in the street and on the beach, where young people dance under the stars until dawn.