Friday, February 08, 2013

Carnival in Canary Islands

It's carnival time in the Canary Islands and this is a huge event that doesn't exactly keep to the traditional carnival timetable. It goes on well after Ash Wednesday, even getting close to Easter some years, as each community stages their own and wants participants from neighbouring towns. The main events are in Las Palmas on Gran Canaria and in Santa Cruz on Tenerife, the latter being the second-largest carnival in the world after Rio de Janeiro. In Santa Cruz this year some events have been cancelled because during the election gala for the carnival queen one of the contestants' elaborate costume caught fire and she was severely burnt.
But wherever you'll be in the Canaries over the next few weeks watch out for local posters and announcements. The actual parades and main events couldn't be missed anyway - the sights and sounds are obvious.
Each community end their festivities with the 'funeral of the sardine' when a large papier-mache sardine full of pyrotechnics  is burnt and pushed into the sea, accompanied by the wailing of 'grieving ladies', i.e. men dressed in women's black clothes.
Images from my archive of the carnival in...
...Valle Gran Rey, La Gomera in 2007

No comments :