The festive celebration in the days leading up to Lent goes by many names: Mardi Gras in New Orleans, Fasnacht in Switzerland, and Fastelavn in Denmark. Yet it’s the ones who call it “Carnival” that have some of the biggest and most famous parties. From South America to Europe and Asia to the Caribbean, Carnival is celebrated on a massive scale. Here are some of the biggest and best Carnival parties around the world:
Rio de Janeiro, Brazil: If one country wore the crown as king of Carnival, it would be Brazil. Even with nearby city Sao Paolo competing hard for the title, Rio de Janeiro ranks as the hottest place to celebrate Carnival in the entire world. No city can compete with the grandiose floats, fervent partygoers, or rhythmic beats that are synonymous with Brazil’s annual festival. Samba schools, blocos street bands, and percussionists, all dressed in colorful costumes, perform during the multi-day event. Add your own color to the event by shooting off 14” Flutter FETTI® Confetti Sticks or 18” Airless Confetti Launchers filled with either multi-colored tissue Flutter FETTI or multi-colored metallic streamers. It is so easy to get caught up in the excitement during this famously fun occasion!
Port of Spain, Trinidad and Tobago: Calypso and soca beats, stick fighting percussion, and limbo competitions are just the beginning of this island nation’s massive Carnival celebration. It’s hard not to be charmed by the beautiful peacock-like costumes and endless smiles of the Caribbean islanders. Port of Spain is the center of all the festivities and the only place to hear all the amazing bands and see all the cool historic characters, like the devilish Jab.
Las Tablas, Panama: The little country of Panama, best known for its strategic canal, should rather be known for its folkloric Carnival celebrations. In particular, the small provincial town of Las Tablas 130 miles southwest of Panama City has one of the best festivities in the country. Fierce competitions for best costume and fanciest float keep the atmosphere enlivened at all times. Fireworks are part of the package too and you can safely join in the fun with your own 14″ FireCracklers Confetti “Snappers” from Flutter FETTI.
Venice, Italy: The Venetian Carnival boasts a lot more history than celebrations across the Atlantic, but it has a lot less zaniness too. In Italy, the celebration is all about its distinctive Bauta, Columbina, Moretta, Volto, and Medico della Peste masks that hide the identity of the wearer. Rather than raging dance parties, attendees head for traditional events like a grand ball, many of which are quite posh and expensive. The majority of people tend to just wander the streets, admire the gondola parades, and ogle the amazing costumes passing by at every corner.
Cadiz, Spain: Whereas Italy focuses on costumes, Spain relishes its talented artists and witty musicians. Carnival in Cadiz is best known for its walking choirs, satirical chirigotas, lyrical comparas, and comical quartets. Although they do dress up in costumes, it is their words, acts, and improvisation that really entertain the crowd. When you want to hear some music, head to the Plaza de Cathedral for a rock concert. Then head to Plaza San Juan de Dios to catch the daily thunderous firecracker display.
Goa, India: Introduced by colonizing Portuguese sailors centuries ago, the seaside state of Goa in India continues to host a huge Carnival festival each year. The festivities are as traditional as any other, with colorful costumes, huge bands, long parades, elaborate floats, and grand balls. The legendary King Momo even makes an appearance as head of the Carnival to kick off the annual party. What do you do when you need a break from all the action? Relax on the pristine sands of Goa’s beaches, of course!
About Flutter FETTI®: Flutter FETTI is an innovator, manufacturer, and worldwide distributor of confetti and streamer products. Our mission is to bring excitement and joy into every special event in your life. Contact one of our confettiologists and we’ll make the right product recommendation to add the “WOW!” effect to your Carnival celebration.