The Caribbean Carnival trail - JANUARY 2020


Photo credit: John de la Bastide/Shutterstock.com


This list includes some of the most popular carnival events in the Caribbean, as well as some lesser known festivals, which are surprisingly fun.


Saint Croix Crucian Christmas Carnival

December 15th – January 4th

Held in Saint Croix, this event which unfolds late December to early January has it all. Around this time, expect to find activities all over the island of Saint Croix, as part of this festival which merges Christmas and carnival in a very interesting way.

Bahamas Junkanoo

December 26th - January 1st

Frequently compared to 'Kakamotobi', the Fancy Dress Festival of Ghana, Junkanoo celebrations in the Bahamas are larger than life. Annually on Boxing Day (December 26) and New Year’s Day (January 1), the eye catching festival takes to the streets and features costumed revelers, themed music, and loads of entertainment. The parade can be seen on the streets of downtown Nassau between 2am and 10am. The most amazing part of this festival is how easily the large parade and captivating beats manage to get spectators off their feet, and into the party!

Insider tip: While the main parade is held in Nassau, you can also get a feel of Junkanoo on Grand Bahama Island, The Exumas, Eleuthera, Habour Island, The Abacos and Bimini.


Saint Kitts Carnival

November 22nd - January 4th

Saint Kitts, the larger and more populated of two island nations (Nevis), is known for its lush rainforests, beaches of white, gray, and black sands, and of course, its carnival celebrations. Carnival in St Kitts, also known as Sugar Mas, typically starts from the second week of November, and spans until the first week of January. There is a packed schedule of activities marking this celebration which includes sunset cruises, jouvert, calypso and soca competitions, beauty pageants and more. The grand parade usually features colorful carnival bands parading through the streets to the sounds of sweet soca music!

Good to know: Jouvert is a carnival street party that happens in the early morning hours the day before the carnival parades of many Caribbean islands. It is a pre carnival party, which typically features revelers dancing with t-shirts and shorts representing their band of choice. Creative t-shirt designs are encouraged, and paint, powder, and mud and all part of the deliriously, messy fun.


Photo credit: John de la Bastide/Shutterstock.com


Montserrat Carnival

December 21st - January 1st

This festival starts in December and ends in January. During this time, Montserrat comes alive with its biggest festival for the year. This is a lesser known event, but it is very popular particularly for home-comers to Montserrat who fled the island after the Soufrière Hills Volcano eruption. The love for home despite circumstance can be seen in this event, as people come together and celebrate life.

Turks and Caicos Junkanoo Jump Up

December 31st - January 1st

If you’re looking for a good time in Turks and Caicos, Junkanoo is a good pick. Happing within the beautiful islands of Turks and Caicos, this event is known for being a parade of energy. The Junkanoo parade held on January 1 includes horns, drums and revelers in bejeweled masks, and handmade costumes dancing into the wee hours of the morning. This festival pays tribute to African music and dance.

Looking for a place to stay? Definitely check out Beaches Turks & Caicos (all-inclusive resort in Turks and Caicos).

Story By Kylie Morrow

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