Carnival parades in photos – Germany, Switzerland, Argentina
In the weeks leading up to Easter each year, cultures around the world celebrate with their own versions of Mardi Gras, also known as Fasching, Fasnacht, Carnival or Carnaval — and that means, of course, lots of carnival parades. Mardi Gras of course just means “Fat Tuesday,” but in the United States it has come to be a catch-all name for the parties, parties and celebratory customs leading up to the period of Lent prior to Easter.
Carnival is by custom a time of eating, drinking, debauchery, and generally indulging. That’s because you are supposed to be good during the ritual fasting and eating only fish of the Lenten season, or the 40 days (not counting Sundays) starting on the Wednesday after Fat Tuesday a.k.a. Shrove Tuesday.
We’re not convinced that this time of partying and indulgence these days really leads up to self-denial and repentance for nearly six weeks. Seems it may just be a good excuse for many to get a little crazy, particularly in hotspots such as New Orleans; Nice, France; and Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. But it’s still a good time all over the world with costumes and customs worth exploring for travelers.
In our story, “Great Carnival Parades in Europe,” we explain a little bit more about terminology and note upcoming dates. There you will also find a number of photos not seen in this gallery.
Below we give you a glimpse at carnival parades and customs in three places: a kid’s parade in Switzerland, a small-town fling in Southern Germany, and a street party and parade at “the End of the World” in Argentina’s Ushuaia.
With southern hemisphere weather, the carnival celebrations mean baring lots of skin.
In an area south of Stuttgart, Geislingen is one of many small towns that take their carnival (Fasnacht) partying and parades quite seriously. You can spend a number of days making the rounds.
For the kid’s parade, the whole town turns out, with marching bands and costumes of all kinds. Clean, daytime fun.