Carnival is a celebration that dates back to the times of ancient Rome and is today one of the most popular festivals in the world. Here is a list of the essential European destinations to travel to Carnival with children. The perfect occasion to get to know the variety of parades, dances, and costumes offered by this great annual event.
1. Venice Carnival in Italy
This celebration is famous throughout the world for its elegance and its antiquity. Typical costumes imitate 17th-century clothing, although most simply wear a mask. In its beginnings, these parties were the only occasion in which all the inhabitants of the city mixed, regardless of their social class, yes, always with their faces covered. If you plan to travel to this destination, it is best to book well in advance, since it is a very busy time.
2. Cologne Carnival in Germany
They are the most famous in the country. During five days you will be able to know the most important monuments of the city while you attend the different events. The start of this celebration is the so-called Weiberfastnacht , the day in which women take to the streets and have the power to cut the ties of all the men they meet, always in a comical and festive context. The date that children usually like the most is Carnival Monday , as there is a parade in which people are asking for sweets shouting: “Kamelle! Kamelle! “
3. Nice Carnival in France
It attracts tourists from all over thanks to its climate and its location on the Côte d’Azur. These days, half a million visitors seek to enjoy the floats, the lights and the outstanding gastronomy of the region. One of the essential parts of this celebration is the Battle of the Flowers , a famous parade starring the Carnival Queen in which a multitude of colored flowers are thrown to the public.
4. Patras Carnival in Greece
Without a doubt one of the best destinations to travel in Carnival with children. This Greek city is not only home to the most prominent in the country, but its parades are mainly focused on entertaining children with activities such as the bicycle race or painting workshops. In fact, these are the only protagonists of one of the scheduled parades.
5. Bohemian Carnival in the Czech Republic
Bohemia is a region west of Prague . Their masquerades imitate the famous celebrations that were organized in Czech territory since the Middle Ages. If you attend this event, don’t forget to go to the famous masked ball or take your children to the fancy dress party that is organized every year. Enjoy with your family this playful atmosphere and the festivals that animate every corner of the area.
6. Maastricht Carnival in Holland
The city of Maastricht is another destination to travel on Carnival with children. We recommend that you attend the traditional raising of flags and the launch of eleven cannonballs in Vrijthof Square, which herald the start of the event. From that moment on, three days without rest will take place in the Dutch metropolis. Don’t forget to wear your costume to enjoy one of the most hectic dates in the Netherlands.
7. Basel Carnival in Switzerland
It is the largest popular festival in the country, lasts 3 days and begins with the touch of the bullseye. At the beginning of this, more than 200 lanterns painted with carnival motifs are illuminated in the dark, giving rise to a very striking picture. During the second day, attendance is essential on a family trip as a children’s parade is organized in which children can dress up and participate.
8. Madeira Carnival in Portugal
The allegorical parade on the first Saturday of this celebration is one of the most important events in Madeira. In it thousands of participants perform a unique choreography to the rhythm of samba throughout the urban area, until it ends in the Plaza del Municipio. Trapalhao is also very popular , whose route fills the city center with color and joy.
9. Maaseik Carnival in Belgium
The Maaseik parade is the oldest in Belgium. This tradition began in 1865 with the Day of the Poor, in which people with the most economic resources distributed clothing and food to the most disadvantaged. Currently, on this holiday what is distributed are candies and sweets . An ideal destination to travel to Carnival with children!
10. Aalborg Carnival in Denmark
It is not celebrated in the winter months, as is usual, but during the summer. It is the most prominent in northern Europe, in fact the Danish city welcomes between 15,000 and 20,000 people during this date. The concerts in Kilde Park take place throughout the week, and are also very typical fireworks, which can be seen strolling through the port. Noteworthy is the Battle of the Carnival Bands, an exciting confrontation in which the participants compete to make their float the best.
Also, to travel in Carnival with children, you may be interested in other destinations in Europe such as Verona or London, which have a great variety of monuments of tourist interest.