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Issue 5 / Top 5 Festivals from Pan Am Countries

Top 5 Festivals from Pan Am Countries

Jul 12, 2015

 

It’s now Pan American and Parapan American time! It's festival central here in Toronto but let's celebrate these nations who have their own fantastic festivals as well. Here is our five favorite Pan Am festival cities! 

As Toronto celebrated the launch of the Pan Am and Parapan Am Games yesterday with a lavish opening night ceremony, now is the time to celebrate the athletes representing their respective nations throughout the Americas (from Canada, to the Caribbean islands, to Argentina) compete in the games. But that’s not all that these countries have to celebrate, here’s a list of our top five carnivals from countries participating in this year’s Pan Am Games. Time to start planning your fest-filled vacation! 

Carnival and J'ouvert in Trinidad

A culmination of hip-shaking soca music, daring, bright-coloured costumes, and non-stop dancing, Trinidad's Carnival and J'ouvert Monday draw crowds from near and far for an action-packed few days of fêting. Celebrities like Rihanna, Idris Elba and Nicki Minaj have jumped into costume and joined the party along with music powerhouses Machel Montano and Destra. Revellers from across the globe can connect with mas camps (bands) to join in the festivities and don a daring but beautiful outfit for the day. Be sure to get your rest on the flight there because there is no sleeping once the party starts.
                                                                  

Carnival of Brazil in Brazil

Photo credit: Venturist via Flickr/www.viator.com 

The Carnival of Brazil is one of the largest, most famous street carnivals in the world, and during the festivities many Brazilian cities come alive with song and dance. Rio de Janeiro, São Paulo, Minas Gerais, Pernambuco and Bahia, just to name a few, host huge parades and festivities for six days leading to (and including) Ash Wednesday. Huge floats and party-goers flood the streets and take over the city. It’s a celebration of religion and culture, woven with fun, festivities, food, music, dance and more.

Mashramani in Guyana

Photo credit: www.realtalkzz.com

Mashramani started in 1970 as Guyana's way of celebrating becoming a republic. Held on February 23rd, their day of independence, Mashramani entails a day of food, dancing, games, music and more. The night before they host a j’ouvert and people from all corners of the country flock to the streets to follow their favourite soca and calypso bands down the road. After the all-night party, the parade begins and elaborate costumes flood the streets.

 

Toronto Caribbean Carnival in Canada

North America’s biggest Caribbean festival packs the streets of Toronto with tourists and locals annually during the August long weekend. Formerly and still commonly called Caribana, the festival celebrates Caribbean culture and traditions with hundreds of brightly- and ornately-dressed dancers hitting the streets between slow-rolling trucks blaring that year’s soca hits. Food trucks, fresh juice stands and flag booths line the streets and there’s a king and queen competition, art shows, boat cruises and concerts. There’s also a junior version of the parade, Kiddie Caribana, giving children a chance to dress up, take part and learn about their culture.

Mardi Gras in the United States

 

Every year on Shrove Tuesday, the people of New Orleans (and tourists of course) hit the streets of New Orleans for Mardi Gras. French for Fat Tuesday, Mardi Gras is the last day before Lent and therefore the last day to enjoy decadent food before fasting. The day of parades, culture, masks, beads, soul food, music and dance is an incredible sight to take in.

Photo credit: main image courtesy of  www.asset-d.soup.com 
 

Geeta Wahab

Geeta Wahab

Author

Cultivating a life she loves, Geeta (@geets.suites) is chasing all her passions, including her love for home décor. As a brand new home owner, her current journey has launched her further into that world - check out her Instagram @geets.suites for tidbits of her story and other decorating pieces. A...

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