Carnivale in Viareggio

One of the great highlights of the year, for me, is the carnival in Viareggio - one of Italy's biggest and best.  So last Sunday (my next to last day in Italy for a while) we headed down to the city.  It's a family party and a great chance for some dressing up and dancing in the street.

The floats are always awe-inspiring in terms of their size and complexity - some bigger than the buildings on either side of the street - and there's always a strong political message.Some floats are just plain whacky!

Or even scary!!

But the costumes are always fantastic.  I loved Neptune's attendants.

This year, pop music was quite prominent, with homages to both Freddie Mercury and John Lennon.

This was one of my favourite floats - a gigantic insect, lit up from within, with moving head and legs - like something from War of the Worlds.

There was a strong environmental message - a First Nation American float featured endangered animals and butterflies -

and there were several that also highlighted the precarious economic situation.  The figures of Poverty and Famine were stalking the parades, particularly on this float - The Last Beach

and I found this wonderful money pig having a rest on a pile of skulls beside the route.

Elsewhere, the message seemed to be that the world is being run by clowns - many of them with tanks and bazookas.

As always, it's the people along the route that catch my eye.  This innocent little boy sprayed me with silly string!

And I loved this Pirate family - he could certainly give Johnny Depp a bit of competition!

The carnival route is along the promenade which runs parallel to the beach.  What better way to end the day than a walk along the edge of the sea.  And a great place to cool off tired feet!


  1. What a fantastic experience! A feast of sights and sounds.


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