The tradition of the Las Palmas carnival dates all the way back to the 15th century. The present carnival has had the same form since the 1970s. During Franco’s rule, street parties were banned, but it didn’t take long for the islanders of Gran Canaria to get permission to revive their cherished carnival after a break of over 40 years.
The carnival kicks off in February with the prestigious crowning of the carnival queen. The competitors show off their astounding outfit creations and fanciful designs.
Some of the other highlights of the carnival are; the crowning of the drag-queen, the carnival parade “Gran Cabalgata” and the popular gala evening “Gran Gala”. The carnival’s grand finale is rounded off with the “Burial of the Sardine”. The sardine is a symbol of sinful living, which the carnival represents. A huge model of a sardine is carried in a long procession through the town to the beach at Las Canteras, where it is burned on a large bonfire. The festivities are then over and everyone is now “pure”, ready for the next big celebration, Easter.
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