10 most colorful carnivals

Oddly enough, but February is the most festive month of the year. The thing is that this month, around the world are the most memorable carnivals, during which you can see colorful parades, plenty of food and all kinds of fun. There are many theories concerning the origin of the carnival. Some believe that the word «the carnival» comes from the Latin expression «carne vale», which means «farewell to meat», meaning the last days when one could eat meat before Lent. Others believe that celebrating ward off evil spirits and are a way to say goodbye to winter and welcome spring. Around the world spend hundreds of carnivals, among which are the most memorable and colorful: 1. Carnival Rio, Brazil (17-22 February)

The Rio carnival is a kind of yardstick with which to measure all other carnivals. It is also one of the most celebrated artistic events in the world. Slightly more than half a million tourists come every year «the capital of all carnivals in the world» to watch the greatest Orgy of all times and peoples. The carnival begins with the crowning of king Momo, who passed a huge silver and gold keys to the city. Then begin the celebration across the country on all the streets, squares, bars and clubs, culminating in a Parade of Samba, when the best are on a Samba school in Rio de Janeiro to win the title of best in Brazil.

2. Venice carnival, Italy (11-21 February )

The carnival of Venice is probably the second most popular carnival in the world. It starts two weeks before Ash Wednesday and ends on Fat Tuesday, called Mardi Gras in Catholic traditions. During carnival, concerts, balls, dances, parades and other events. Participants typically wear elaborate costumes and masks. The tradition of wearing Venetian masks came to light because all residents of the city wanted to be equal, regardless of whether they were rich or poor. Today more than 30 000 tourists a day come to Venice to celebrate carnival.

3. Carnival in Trinidad and Tobago (17-22 April )

Dancers, Calypso, steel drums and rum bottles are immutable attributes of the largest Caribbean carnival. Carnival in Trinidad and Tobago is a mixture of European, African, Indian, native American, Chinese and middle Eastern influence. Taking the best traditions of many cultures, this carnival is rightly called «the greatest show on Earth».

4. The carnival in Barranquilla, Colombia (18-21 February, )

The carnival in Barranquilla is so awesome that even UNESCO has named it «a Masterpiece of oral and intangible cultural heritage of humanity». Thousands of tourists flood of Barranquilla, a port city in Northern Colombia to celebrate this holiday that starts four days before Ash Wednesday and reaches a peak during the Batalla de las Flores (battle of flowers). The carnival in Barranquilla is the most important folklore festival in Colombia and one of the largest in the world.

5. The carnival in nice, France (17 February-4 March)

Carnival in nice is one of the most important carnival events, alongside the Brazilian and Venetian carnivals. During carnival, the city of nice turns into a massive party, accompanied by parades, fireworks and bonfires, floral processions and lush street performances. On the first day under the deafening cry of the crowd at place Massena arrives the King of carnival. Carnival procession represents more than 20 chariots and 500 «big heads» papier-mache. The last day is a night parade, when the streets of nice lit by a multitude of colorful lights.

6. The carnival in Santa Cruz de Tenerife, Spain (17 to 26 February)

Today, the carnival in Santa Cruz de Tenerife is the second most popular, world-famous carnival after the carnival of Rio. Celebrations on the streets of Santa Cruz de Tenerife start on Friday spectacular opening parade, which reaches its peak at night, when thousands of people in carnival costumes dancing until the early hours. The carnival consists of two parts: the official carnival and street carnival. Carnival is known for its dressed dancers, dazzling Queens and musical theatres murgi.

7. The Mardi Gras carnival in New Orleans, USA (February 21, )

Mardi Gras is a popular American holiday, which began to celebrate in the mid-1800s. Costume balls, noisy parties and holiday parades this carnival one of the most colorful and violent events in America. Fat Tuesday is the last day for Catholics to indulge their desires before Ash Wednesday, after which begin the week of mortification that comes with fasting. During the carnival held more than 400 chariots with 15 000 participants, who are followed by millions of viewers.

8. Carnival in Goa, India (18-21 February, )

The carnival is rather exceptional and unique event in India, which was introduced by the Portuguese, the ruling in Goa for over 500 years. Carnival is also held in February, for three days and nights, when the legendary king Momo takes over the Board staff, and the streets are filled with music and a rainbow. Carnival in Goa is accompanied with dances, parades, balls and the famous «red-and-black dance» which is held on the last day of the National club of the capital city of Goa — Panaji.

9. Cologne carnival, Germany (16-22 February, )

Opening of carnival in Cologne begins long before the main event, November 11 at 11:11 PM, and after the New year carnival is once again gaining strength. Street carnival lasts from Fat Tuesday to ash Wednesday and the celebration held on the streets, in parks and pubs. But the key point street carnival is «rose Monday» when is a festive procession, during which the hosts of the celebration: the Prince, the Peasant and the virgin are in the city and give out candy.

10. The Basel carnival, Switzerland (26 February to 2 March )

The carnival in Basel is the largest in Switzerland and is held every year between February and March. In the days of the carnival the old town is completely transformed, filled with hundreds of lighted lanterns, decorated with illustrations. The streets are drummers and musicians playing the flute-Piccolo. According to local historians, the tradition of spreading confetti appeared in Basel, and later spread to the whole world.

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