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The eight most beautiful carnivals in the world to attend

Carnival is one of those festivals that have united people through folklore for centuries. It is usually celebrated following the Christian calendar, and comes before the period called Lent (the 40 days before Easter). Its history originates from some pagan holidays, such as the Roman Saturnalia or the Greek Dionysia.

Each country, over the centuries, has come to celebrate it in different ways, but in general you can find, everywhere, some things in common: the floats, the masks, the flowers, the dancing and the parties. It is a time when anyone can be whoever they want, and it once served to subvert, momentarily, existing social orders.

The magazine Forbes has compiled a ranking of what are the 8 best carnivals in the world to take part in. Alongside the most famous, we also find lesser-known but equally beautiful festivals.

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The Mardi Gras of New Orleans (USA)
The origins of this beautiful Carnival, one of the most famous in the world, go back to the traditions of 17th and 18th century Europe within the House of Borbone. Today it is a grand parade full of floats, music and dancing, always in the typical New Orleans style
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Venice Carnival (Italy)
The origins of the Carnival of Venice, perhaps the second most popular in the world after that of Rio, are to be found in the celebration of the Republic of Venice after its victory over the Patriarchate of Aquileia in 1162.
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Venice Carnival (Italy)
One of the most characteristic elements are the famous porcelain masks, which are now a symbol of Carnival all over the world. Venetian doctor masks are also characteristic. In addition, the tradition of the Flight of the Angel, one of the most fascinating Carnival spectacles, has also been restored.
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Carnival of Rio de Janeiro (Brazil)
Of course, Carnival is celebrated differently in different parts of Brazil, but that of Rio is undoubtedly the most important because of its magnificence and grandeur, as well as the exuberance in costumes.
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Carnival of Rio de Janeiro (Brazil)
The Carnival of Rio de Janeiro is known worldwide especially for the magnificent parades organized by the city's best samba schools. The parades are held in the Sambodromo, and are one of Brazil's main attractions. The Samba schools are huge and very organized, and they work year-round to prepare for Carnival. The parades last four nights, and are part of an official competition divided into seven divisions at the end of which one school will be declared the winner of the year.
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Cologne Carnival (Germany)
Very famously, the Cologne Carnival in Cologne, Germany, begins with the women's parade, during which women take the lead in the parade and walk in front of everyone as a sign of celebration and liberation.
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Cologne Carnival (Germany)
The main event of the carnival is Rose Monday, two days before Ash Wednesday. During all these days, the people of Cologne go out in disguise. The typical greeting during the festival is "Kölle Alaaf!", in the language kölsch.
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Carnival of Barranquilla (Colombia)
It is the second most important Carnival in all of Latin America after that of Rio de Janeiro. The so-called Verbenas, public fiestas or festivals, open the four days of Carnival.
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Carnival of Barranquilla (Colombia)
For its cultural importance within South America and beyond, this Carnival has earned two "honors": that of Heritage of the Nation, by the National Congress of Colombia, on November 26, 2001, and that of Heritage of Humanity (Patrimonio oral e intangible de la humanidad) conferred by UNESCO in Paris, on November 7, 2003.
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Carnival of Notting Hill (England)
The parade is led by representatives of the West Indian communities in London. Over the years (it has been celebrated since 1965), this carnival has become increasingly popular, so much so that it attracts millions of tourists to the streets of the capital.
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Nice Carnival (France)
Famous for its floral floats, the Nice Carnival is another must-see in the heart of Continental Europe. It is the most important carnival on the entire French Riviera.
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