The side of the carnival of Las Palmas that you don’t know of

Las Palmas of Gran Canaria hosts one of the world’s largest carnivals. This long standing tradition on the island attracts around a million spectators and is one the most unique festivals of the capital. The city dresses in bright colors, its inhabitants unleash their natural creativity and dress up in extravagant costumes.

The popular music, and the rhythm of the batucada, sounds annually in the Santa Catalina Park, the key centre of Carnival and the gateway to the city for travelers arriving by sea to Puerto de La Luz. In this park lies the large and magnificent open-air stage which combines spaciousness with an impressive backdrop. The kick-off event takes place with a “pregón”, an opening speech announcing to the crowd gathered at the main stage in the Santa Catalina Park the beginning of the celebration. The murgas (the minstrels) in Las Palmas of Gran Canaria have thousands of followers, they are the image of grace, wit, panache and satire, transmitting to his audience, with their oral musical theatre performed, fun, laughter and hilarity.

There is also a “Carnival Queen contest”, in which dozens of participants prance and dance down the catwalk with allegorical and iridescent costumes, under the watchful and expectant gaze of millions of viewers and a “Drag Queen competition”, a fresh, daring and transgressive event in which participants of any gender or sexual orientation do an imaginative musical performance featuring several costume changes and wearing full makeup and platform shoes (in some cases measuring half a meter in length). The celebration includes parades, masquerade, music and you can enjoy popular Mogollon (dances). The end of the carnival is announced by the “Burial of the Sardine”, when grieving “widows” in costume bid Carnival farewell each year. It is a satirical ceremony and represents the end of carnival season and the beginning of the religious fasting period.

Would you like to visit the Carnival of Las Palmas of Gran Canaria? Looking forward to your comments!

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