Carnaval de Nice 2011, one of the major European carnivals, will kick off on February 18, 2011 at the Place Masséna facing the Bay of Angels in Nice, the largest city of the French Riviera. This time many activities will be either truly Mediterranean or inspired by the country, as the 2011 carnival theme is “King of the Mediterranean (Octopus 1st)”. The lively musical event will break monotony of the dull white winter for about three weeks. The Nice Carnival Queen, crowned as the Ambassador of the carnival, will grace one of the flower floats.
Photo by debs-eye
What to See?
Flower Parades will feature twenty floats, decorated with stunning flowers, and a number of performers in elaborate bright costumes. The “flower battles” will take place on the floats. Lilies, gerberas, roses, daisies, tokyos, gladioli, mimosas and other colorful local flowers will be showered on the jubilant crowd awaiting along the Promenade des Anglais stretching between the Hotel Negresco and the Theatre de Verdure.
More than 1,000 dancers and musicians from different parts of the world will entertain public. Local and international street music and theater groups will also present various performances.
Resplendent figurines made up of traditional papier-mache will complement the parades. Keep evenings free to enjoy razzle-dazzle of illuminated float parades. The Parades of Lights and Carnival Parades, starting from the Place Massena, will loop around the Albert 1er Gardens. Huge screens installed on the square will display lots of entertaining programs. Patrick Moya, a well-known French artist, will organize a parade of big heads and virtual 3D floats in the Streets of his Island on Second Life.
On the last day, closing ceremony will start at 8:30 pm. One hour later the incineration of the King and a firework display will warm up the atmosphere.
Do’s and Don’ts for the Carnival Visitors
- Do not bring your pets along to watch the parades.
- Use appropriate car parks before boarding Massena and Opera-Vieille Ville bound trams for Carnival Parades and Flower Parades respectively. Park the vehicles in Parcazur Pont-Michel if coming from the East and Parcazur Las Planas when approaching from the West.
- Traffic will be stopped two-hours in advance of beginning of the parades, so plan your arrival accordingly. The parades start at 2:30 pm and 9:00 pm.
- Reserve seats and entry tickets for parades and other events in advance to have better view of the floats and performers.
Hotel Deals in Nice, French Riviera
Hotel De La Mer
Hôtel De La Mer is a welcoming 2 star hotel in Nice Old Town (Vieille Ville), directly in Massena Square, where Parades of Lights and Carnival Parades start.
Ajoupa Baie des Anges Vacation Rental
Located in the center of Nice, Ajoupa Baie des Anges apartment is ideal for a great holiday in the French Riviera, both if you travel with a group of friends or with your families!
Hotel De Garlande, Avignon
Hotel De Garlande is a 2 star hotel situated in the center of Avignon, close to numerous art galleries, upscale boutiques and speciality shops selling traditional products.