First held as far back as 1873, this famous Tuscan carnival is best-known for its five vibrant processions which take place over the period of a fun-packed month of celebration. Making their way slowly along the beachside Viareggio Avenue, the parades are truly a sight to behold - huge papier mâché representations of politicians and celebrities ride high atop heavyweight floats with enthusiastic spectators lining the streets. And the party doesn’t stop there - carnival month is full of masked balls, all-night parties and special exhibitions. The entire town is in party mode with restaurants and bars serving up tailor made carnival menus for the occasion.
Viareggio Carnival takes place from 5th to 28th February with the five parades happening on 5th, 12th, 18th, 26th and 28th February. You can buy tickets for each of the parades at one of the Carnival kiosks on the Avenue Viareggio or from the Fondazione Carnevale on Piazza Mazzini. Alternatively, you can buy them online from the official website. You can get to the Carnival by flying to Pisa’s International Airport, the Aeroporto Galilei di Pisa, and from there taking the train from mainline station Pisa Centrale straight to nearby Viareggio. The train station is a leisurely 15 minutes’ walk from the parade zone.
If you’re planning to attend the carnival, make sure you bring a mask with you so that you can feel right at home in the festivities. In common with many other carnivals, masks are an important part of the festivities and history of the event. During the parade, you’re sure to see a large number of mascheroni a piedi, the giant moving masks which form part of the floats, as well as teste in capo, the giant heads which are worn by participants, together with the carnival’s mascot, Burlamacco. If you’d like to learn more about how these beautiful masks are created, head to the Museo del Carnevale which is on the parade route.
Make the most of your trip to Viareggio for the carnival by staying in the very best rental accommodation for you. If you book with Eventful Stays, you can choose to stay in luxury apartments, penthouses, bed and breakfasts, studios, houses or boats…all close to the carnival festivities via public transport or on foot. Check out our accommodation in Viareggio.
If you’re travelling to Viareggio for the carnival, you’ll find plenty of things to see and do in one of this beautiful location, including: Bagno Maurizio, La Passeggiata and Villa Argentina.
To find out more information about the carnival, please check out the carnival’s official website where you’ll be able to download the complete carnival programme and find out more about the costumes, masks, songs and history of the Viareggio Carnival.
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