Updated 23 February: Santiago del Teide Ayuntamiento has announced that as a result of the bad weather forecast, the Fiestas Committee has suspended Los Gigantes carnival events for this weekend. A new programme will be published shortly for events postponed.
Updated 16 February: Tonight’s the night for two of the most popular carnival events. First, in Puerto de la Cruz, the high-heels marathon, the Mascarita Ponte Tacón, starts around 8pm in the Plaza del Charco and sees men dressed up as women in high heels of at least 8cm navigating an obstacle course – a quite literal “highlight” of the carnival! In Güímar there is magic of a different kind, black and transgressional! The performance of Las Burras starts from around 9pm in the plaza de San Pedro Arriba and sees the legendary witches dressed as donkey mares infiltrating male society to perform a witches’ Sabbath …
Updated 9 February: Arona’s programme for the Los Cristianos carnival is HERE (1-12 March), and Santiago del Teide Ayuntamiento has also unveiled its programme for the always-popular Los Gigantes carnival (23 February-4 March) HERE. Meanwhile, Puerto de la Cruz’s carnival is already underway but affected by the weather with some postponements: the official website and programme is HERE. The programme for Santa Cruz’s carnival is HERE.
Updated 8 February: And in the end, this year’s carnival queen is 33-year-old clerk Carmen Laura Lourido Pérez in her second attempt to win the crown. She was representing Fuente Alta wearing the fantasía Renacida (reborn) designed by Jorge González, who also designed last year’s winning fantasia – the Madame Soleil creation worn by 2017 carnival queen Judith López who herself was representing Fuente Alta! The carnival now moves onto the streets, with the opening parade tomorrow, Friday 9 February.
Updated 7 February: For many the carnival queen gala is one of the main events of the Carnaval, and it will be tonight that the 13 candidates will take to the stage in their fantasias. The gala is being shown live on La2. Good luck to all the candidates, and I imagine anyone watching will need to turn the sound down when Saida Prieto walks onto the stage. Let’s pray to any and all the gods that everything will be safe tonight.
Updated 9 January: Christmas is only just over, but the tickets for the adult murga final sold out last week within five minutes of becoming available. Tenerife is already in full gearing up for Carnaval mode, with the official presentation yesterday of the 13 carnival queen candidates to the mayor of Santa Cruz, José Manuel Bermúdez. All will be present at the official inaugural act of Carnaval 2018 this Friday, 12 January, at the Castillo Negro in Santa Cruz at 9.30pm.
Meanwhile the Cabildo has confirmed the dates and given descriptions for some of the most popular events as follows:
- 7 February – Carnival Queen Election Gala. Considered by many as the highlight of the Carnival, the spectacular Carnival Queens are often the focus of the stunning iconic images each year. Shimmering sequins, feathers, colours, fabrics and textures – the huge structures that the aspirant queens wear look truly amazing, and every costume seems to have been inspired by a fairy tale. The beauty and flair of the wearers make it even more difficult to choose one favourite design.
- 9 February – Opening Parade. The queen’s costume, her maids of honour and the Carnival groups take on a whole new level when seen close up parading down the streets of Santa Cruz, followed by costumed performers, dance troupes and musical groups.
- 11 & 17 February: Family-friendly Day Carnival. The other face of Carnival, the daytime festivities. Groups of friends, children and families stream by in their finest costumes. Under the bright light of day, people of all ages and origins share the streets looking to have a good time.
- 13 February: Coso Apoteosis Parade. On Carnival Tuesday, when everyone’s muscles ache from Monday night’s dancing and their faces are still speckled with glitter, the city is once again filled with colour to celebrate the Grand Final Parade.
- 14 February: The Burial of the Sardine. The Burial of the Sardine takes place on Ash Wednesday and features a crazy, irreverent procession of weeping “widows” with a huge model fish, which is finally “cremated”.
The main Carnaval website is HERE. It’s underway!
Updated 28 November: The big news for Carnaval 2018 is that Saida Prieto, the carnival queen candidate horrendously burnt when her fantasia (carnival dress) caught fire back in 2013, will try again to be Carnival Queen. She will be representing the newspaper Diario de Avisos, and says that she hopes to recover her dream as well as she has recovered her health. I imagine that she will carry the goodwill and hopes of the whole of Tenerife with her, and I can’t imagine what it would take for this enormously brave woman now not to be Reina of Carnaval 2018!
Updated 6 November: The dates for the 2018 Los Cristianos carnival are now confirmed as 1-12 March, with Pirates, Corsairs & Buccaneers as the main theme, a world of adventures, hidden treasures and mythical undersea monsters which will all be coming into land in the harbour, Arr Jim Lad! The full programme will be unveiled in due course. Click the poster to the right to see full size.
Updated 8 October: The Santa Cruz carnival now has its poster, the main image above.
Updated 4 September: The public can now vote for the carnival poster, and among the ten finalists there is just one non-Canarian, artist Marc Olbrechts (left, click to enlarge). All you have to do to vote is click HERE, then choose your favourite, click on it and scroll to the bottom and click the blue vote button … there’s one vote per IP.
Updated 2 August: The dates for the Puerto de la Cruz Carnaval are 3-18 February, and although the Santa Cruz carnival voters selected Fantasía rather than Ancient Greece, over in Puerto de la Cruz the carnival theme has been chosen as Greek Mythology, and the poster already designed (right: click to enlarge). Carnival Tuesday will be on the 13th, with the burial of the sardine on Wednesday 14th. The men’s fancy dress high heels marathon, the Mascarita Ponte Tacón, will be on Friday 16th, and the Gran Coso parade on Saturday 17th.
Updated 1 June: Any designers or artists out there might be interested to know that the design of the main poster for the Santa Cruz carnaval – famously the second biggest carnival in the world – is being thrown open to the public. The council’s fiestas department says that entry is open to everyone, and the rules for the design competition will be published HERE and in the official website Carnavaldetenerife.com in a few days … but that designers should get started on their projects now! The theme, chosen by public vote as posted below, is Fantasia.
Original post 2 April: Carnaval has only just finished, but as I reported in the Carnaval 2017 post, voting opened to the public last month to choose the theme of the Santa Cruz Carnaval 2018, which will take place between 7 and 18 February. Out of the options of carnival on ice, Fantasia, New York, the Old West, Savannah, the Renaissance, and Ancient Greece, the leader from the start, Fantasía, has won. And so, we already have an idea of what to expect in January and February next year!