a. a festive occasion or period marked by merrymaking, processions, etc.: esp in some Roman Catholic countries, the period just before Lent
Carnaval is celebrated all throughout Spain for many weeks but the most famous place to go for Carnaval is Cádiz. The whole city goes absolutely insane: constant partying, crazy costumes and hundreds of satirical street performances, known as chirigotas.
This year I had the opportunity to head to Cádiz for Los Carnavales with the Erasmus group from the university. 100 students just free from exams heading out on a 7 hour drive, to have 12 hours of partying and then head back again. Red bull at the ready.
Dressing up was done in no small measure. I was a cowgirl (yehaa), and was accompanied by Danny and Sandy from Grease, the superhero group ' The erasmusables', Amy Winehouse, a fairy, the Spice Girls and, of course, the Pope.
We arrived in the afternoon and the party was already going. After a "cultural" tour of the city we headed closer to the centre where a huge concert was taking place in one of the squares.
After getting lost for quite a while we eventually made our way to the club for the night and danced the night away. Even managed to get a kebab on the way home, something I SERIOUSLY miss in Spain.
I have to be honest with you: I was a little too busy enjoying myself to actually take in much of the culture. I didn't see any chirigotas and i didn;t even pay much attention to what the others were wearing. However one aspect of the culture that did strike me immediately was the stereotype I had been told about: Everyone is so friendly! Seriously, we were all pushing and shoving, falling into each other and spilling drinks but everyone I met seemed to be in a fantastic mood.
Cádiz seemed to be a really lovely city full of lovely people. I would definitely go again but I think I need a rest before I try to tackle Carnaval again!
PS We even attempted our own Harlem Shake! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rIJ91iEZPoY&feature=youtu.be