Photo: Desiree Martin/AFP
Billed as the best place to celebrate carnival outside of Rio de Janiero, the Santa Cruz carnival in Tenerife runs from Wednesday 19t February to Sunday 1st March. It draws crowds of 400,000 and involves street parties, parades, satirical street bands and of course, the crowning of a carnival queen. Full details of events found HERE:
Carnival of Carrizo de la Ribera, Leon
Photo: Cesar Manso/AFP
Another carnival with cowbells, this time, locals dress up as characters called 'antruejos' (shown in picture, above), terrifying looking figures that you definitely wouldn't want to meet on a dark night.
In Solsona, Catalonia, carnival festivities have a long history. Under Franco, the celebrations were forbidden; however, the city was the first to begin celebrating again after his death. This carnival gives you the opportunity to experience some Catalan culture traditions, chief among them the parade of the gegants or the symbolic hanging of the (Catalan) donkey.
Arrival of the birds
The carnival in Villarrobledo is another one with a long history which goes back to the 19th century. Traditionally, the festivities begin on Thursday with the Llegada de los Juanes, a parade of people wearing bird masks. They are the opening act for ten days full of costumes, fun and fiestas. There is also a children's carnival with its own costume competition.
Carnaval del Vino de Haro
In La Rioja, fans of classy celebrations might find exactly what they are looking for. This year's celebrations follow a Murder on the Orient Express theme, with wine playing a major role. Local bodegas present their latest creations. Salute!
Gay carnival in Sitges
More than 250,000 people flock to the coastal town of Sitges about 35 kilometres from Barcelona for one of the biggest gay carnivals in the world. Starting on Tuesday 18th to Wednesday February 26th, the week is packed with parades, parties and shows and the gay-friendly town opens its doors to thousands of revellers. By the way, this one is also said to be one of the safest street festivals of the world. Best party night is on Saturday!
Drink and dress up
A carnival choir entertains the crowds in Cadiz. Photo: AFP
The carnival in Cádiz is one of the most famous in Spain, dating back to the 16th century. These days it's all about dressing up and poking fun at politicians and people in the news, as well as the usual eating and drinking of course.