In Europe The riotus party called the Carnaval was originally spawned from celebratory Roman orgies held in honor of Bacchus who was, fittingly, the god of wine, theatre, ritual madness, and ecstasy. The celebrations continued through the years, incorporating masks during the Middle Ages so that revellers could protect their identities. In Catholic tradition, the end of Carnival marks the beginning of Lent, representing 40 days of fasting. Celebrating Carnival before abstinence allowed followers to fill up on enough food and drink to see them through the following month.
Today Carnival is alive and well in europe with Carnivals that occur annually in Spain, Italy, France, Germany, Portugal, Denmark, Netherlands and the UK. Unlike their Equatorial counterparts Europe often celebrates their Carnivals for an average of 2 days and this is often for the Parades to take place, the event is often not actively celebrated as much by the local population as it is in many other places and is often localised to a single city.
However these Carnivals are still immensely enjoyable, often including a blend of cultures within it's audience that you will not find anywhere else. For people in europe these are often great Festivals to attend as they are a short flight away and as they do not last as long as other carnivals in the world they are perfect for a mind-blowing 3 or 4 day trip.
Many carnival bands will travel to and participate in the Carnivals of other European Countries wherever possible in order to showcase their costumes and provide people with the opportunity to take part in the best type of celebration on earth. We would recommend European Carnivals to people who want to be a part of the action, and also for those individuals who want to visit a city at a time when there is a lot of fun to be had.
In Europe due to the inclement weather many of the festivities took place indoors inside Ballrooms where identities and intentions were concealed behind flamboyant masks or disguises. As a result most European Carnivals have a sharp increase in events where Carnival Music can be heard and enjoyed on the run-up to the Carnival Parade.