Carnival of Tenerife

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      Carnaval de Tenerife 28.455411, -16.250153 (Directions)

    The Carnival of Tenerife is celebrated throughout the Island, although the best known, cheerful, luxurious and extravagant is the Carnival of Santa Cruz, second only to that one of Rio de Janeiro.

    The Carnival begins in February and lasts about three weeks. One of the most important moments is the Queen´s election gala, with the procession of the most beautiful candidates dressed in grand and imaginative clothes. The Friday before Mardi Gras (Shrove Tuesday), a spectacular procession announces the festival with thousands of masked people in fancy dresses, and dozens of bands touring the streets, dancing and having fun until the morning. On Shrove Tuesday, there is the Parade of Coso, a grand parade of floats and firework displays. The next day, Ash Wednesday, the Burial of the Sardine announces the end of the festivities: the Spirit of Carnival (a cardboard fish) is burned, and then  thrown into the sea accompanied by a procession of mourning widows. However, the final farewell takes place over the weekend with the celebration of the Piñata Chica, resulting in more festivals and parades.