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Monday, February 28, 2011

Carnival at Nice, In Photos

It's that glorious time of year again - the annual Carnival at Nice.  Billed to attract more than 1 million people to France, this fete surely tops the list of coolest events on the Cote d'Azur.

And while I can't claim that we bumped into all 1 million revelers, we did brush elbows with considerable numbers of French, English, & Italians on Sunday afternoon. 

After a quick lunch of a few Nicoise specialties, including socca & sardines farcies (stuffed), we headed to the famed Promenade des Anglais to watch giant floats, crazied clowns on stilts, & pretty-ladies atop giant balloons ramble down the parade route.

One of the nicest things about the day was the coming together of young & old. You were as likely to see a four-year-old spraying the crowd with neon silly-string, as to witness her father raining confetti on passersby. And yes, we were fortunate enough to experience both.

And what Franco-Italian festa would be complete without a handful of Florentine flag-throwers? Well, if there is one, I don't want to know about it, since these young lads captured the attention...

....and hearts of more than a few spectators.  Purely on their technical skills with flags of course.

Much like last year, it was quite a chilly day. Thankfully we managed to escape the rain, and topped off the afternoon with a heavenly hot chocolate from Amorino. And just as we were mentally bookmarking our calendars for next year's festivities, our old friend Mr. Sun, or the King of the Carnival, swung by to bid us a fond adieu. Now if we could just get him to speed up this springtime thing.   

The Carnival at Nice lasts from now until Tuesday, March 8th. For detailed events, click here.


  1. Very nice post Tuula. Thanks for all the pictures. I love the Promenade des Anglais any time of the year. I was not even aware that Carnival was a big event in Nice. Have a very nice day.

  2. Wow, such elaborate costumes! I've only been to Carnival in the Caribbean and the costumes weren't to this scale. Very fun! :)

  3. This is so much fun! I love the costumes. I wish we had something like it here. Tu as de la chance :)

  4. Thanks for the great comments everyone - we had a really great time.
    And the costumes were certainly one of the best things of the day Corinne, so bright & colorful!

  5. Tuula, that looks like so much fun! I'm bummed I missed one of the Riviera's greatest time of year. I'm glad you made it out to Nice and got to enjoy the festivities... even if it looks a bit chilly there!

    Isn't it neat that Nice celebrates its Italianness just as much as its frenchness at the carnivale? Have a great time in Rome!

  6. I love Florentine flag-throwers! I saw them in that movie Under the Tuscan Sun and thought they were so fantastic! I think I'm going to have to head your way for Carnival next year x

  7. Awesome. We have friends in the Netherlands who look forward Carnivale each year. I did not know that France enjoyed this festival too. The photos are really nice. Thanks for sharing.


  8. These are great photos. Such elaborate and colorful costumes! It is always such a treat to visit a city during special festivals.

  9. Tuula - Looks like a ton of fun, just like here in Venice. I so agree with you that it's a party for all ages. I haven't been sprayed yet by the silly string (am still trying to find the word in Italian for it), but I have a headful of confetti! Have a great time in Rome, so sad we're just missing each other there.

  10. I LOVE these shots, Tuula! :-) I'm shivering in my office grinning away at all the colors and crazy costumes. :-) So beautiful.