Carnaval in La Paz is celebrated with gusto, and there is something for everyone to enjoy.
As most people know, Mexico is a very Catholic country and, for people of the Catholic Faith, the 6 weeks before Easter are marked by a somber time of reflection and penance known as Lent. It begins on Ash Wednesday, which falls on February 14. During Lent, members of the faith are expected to give up frivolity and anything related to fun or celebration, often including eating meat. For this reason it is a common practice in Catholic countries to spend the last day or two prior to Ash Wednesday indulging in food, drink and merriment to make up for what will be lost in the coming 6 weeks. In Mexico this time is called Carnaval. The name is thought to come from the phrase “carne vale” which means “farewell to meat”.
When is Carnaval?
In La Paz, Carnaval is celebrated with gusto! It runs for six days beginning on February 8, with a “sneak a peak night” and running until February 13 with parades on the 11th, 12th and 13th, and there is something there for everyone! The festival planners even make sure that there are raised platforms where people with disabilities are able to sit and see the parades.This year, Saturday, December 9, on the main stage there will be the calculation of the Royal Court selection, from which the next Carnaval Queen and other positions of honor will emerge for this festivity. There will be a huge ceremony on the main stage on the Malecón that includes the crowning of this year’s Carnaval royalty.
Watch the video to see some of the parade entertainment from last year’s Carnaval.
This Year’s Carnaval Theme: México Fantástico
The planning committee has chosen the theme México Fantástico (Fantastic Mexico) for this year and it is sure to be a huge party. In addition to a wide range of traditional carnival rides and games, there will be dozens of food stalls with everything from churros to tamales and more. The length of the Malecón will be lined with vendors of all sorts selling their wares including clothing, crafts, blankets, jewelry, and much more. Local artists will also be selling their artisanal works.
Entertainment for All Ages
Carnaval is also a GREAT time for music and entertainment! This year there will be a main stage at the kiosk on the La Paz Malecón, as well as 11 other stages set up where performances of all types are scheduled for young and old throughout the five days of festival. Over 1,500 artists and performers are scheduled to participate, with music often going well into the early hours of the morning! Some big name performers are scheduled, such as María León, Kany García, and Eden Muños, as well as many bands, such as Banda MS and Banda El Recodo, and many local artists of all genres. There will be dance troupes, comedy shows, and so much more. A separate stage will be set up specifically for children’s entertainment, such as Turbulence & Burrita Burrona, and Gallina Pintadita the Musical. If you’re in La Paz, you must take in some of the amazing free entertainment!
The La Paz Municipal Police department announced that they will ensure that there are almost 250 members and 30 vehicles assigned to ensuring the peace and security of those attending, with a particular focus on protection from violence against women and children. Carnaval WILL be a safe place for everyone.
For much of the week, sections of the Malecón will be shut down, and access to some of the streets in el Centro will be closed for stalls, stages, rides, etc. The Malecón itself will be the main focus of the event, but many of the small side streets, such as Constitución alley, Mutualismo and part of Calle Nicolas Bravo where it connects to the Malecón will be completely blocked.
Win Free Tickets
To enter the contest, you must upload in the comments of the post a photo of you wearing a cowboy hat. Then:
Share the post publicly on your Facebook page.
The winner will be the one who gets the most reactions on their comment.
Contest closes 8th February 2024 at midday, the winner will be announced on the same day.
The winner will receive two Fan Zone tickets for the Eden Muñoz Concert.
Carnaval is a truly Mexican celebration that you don’t want to miss! For the latest updates and information about Carnaval in La Paz, visit the official Carnaval La Paz Facebook page here.