Carnaval de Cádiz: Get in on the celebration!

What is Carnival?


Are you ready to participate in one of Spain’s biggest and most celebrated festivals? A huge street party filled with live music, dances, floats and costumes – the Carnival of Cádiz is one you shouldn’t miss!

Although many parts of Spain celebrate Carnival in the spring, the festivities in Cádiz are unique because this city celebrates for the longest amount of time. People in this city definitely know how to party! This large city, located on Andalucía’s Atlantic coast, has been hosting this festival since the 16th century, taking influence from the carnival in Venice, a major trading partner of Cádiz at the time. This really is the best time of year to visit Cádiz and experience its incredible culture and infectious atmosphere firsthand. Smart Insiders is here to offer you some top tips for this crazy carnival!

When is the celebration?

 The jam-packed weeks of celebration come from Christian traditions and take place during the two weeks leading up to the season of Lent. Because many people choose to abstain from things like alcohol and meat during Lent, those in Cádiz celebrate with a crazy party before the time of fasting begins. 2024’s carnival celebrations will take place from the 8th – 18th of February, and visitors flock in from around the world to be a part of this legendary carnival in the south of Spain

What can you see?


Live Music and Costumes (Chirigotas+ Tipos)

Music plays an integral role in the carnival, blasting in every corner, with festival-goers dancing around to the beat of the drum. It is common for musical groups, known as chirigotas, to gather on the streets and perform short songs or poems while dressed in funky costumes, called tipos. These performances often satirize or parody trending political or social topics.

Head over to the Plaza de las Flores and be amused by the abundance of various performers. A famous competition of official groups is held at the Gran Teatro Falla, where you are sure to be entertained! The songs are witty in nature, have fantastic rhythms and are adored by the crowds.

Street Parades and Floats

The festival is known for extravagant street parades, with intricate floats with dancers and gymnasts on board! These incredible parades are a favorite event for those of every age and are a sight to see! Make sure to snap some shots of this epic moment of the floats as they are engulfed by all of the confetti!

How should you dress?

Almost everyone will be dressed in a costume at the carnival, so be sure to join in the fun! Below are some costume tips we have for you to keep in mind.

Grab some friends and do a group costume!

Keep in theme with the carnival, grab some friends and do a fun group costume! Not only is it more fun to dress up collectively, but it’s also a great way to keep track of everyone in your group in the sea of festival-goers! The more, the merrier!

At this festival, there are no rules regarding how you should dress up! Go all out and pick up the craziest costume you can find. A great idea is dressing up as a popular pop-culture figure! 


Comfort is key. Be mindful of the weather!

As in any trip, comfort is key. When you are deciding what your costume will be, remember you will be wearing it all day and late into the night. Remember that As in any trip, comfort is key. Remember that comfortable shoes are essential as there will be loads of walking and dancing, especially if you wander around the incredible attractions that Cádiz has to offer. This party doesn’t stop and goes well into the early hours of the morning, so we would recommend worn-in shoes that won’t give you any blisters!

Be sure to be mindful of the weather. This festival occurs in February, so it might be a little chilly when the sun goes down. When you are deciding what your costume will be, remember you will be wearing it all day and late into the night. Don’t forget to pack up some layers! 

If you are looking for a traditional, cultural event in Spain that will guarantee you a good time, Cádiz is the one for you. Come with Smart Insiders to experience the crazy Carnival in Cádiz, and book your spot here. We know you won’t regret it!

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