Cadiz and its carnival
In Spain Carnival is celebrated in many towns and cities but above all they are known for their traditions and grace, the Carnival of Cadiz, and for the color and beauty of Tenerife Carnival queens: two twin celebrations that were declared as International Tourist Interest.
The origins of the modern Carnival are religious following the ban of eating meat on days of Lent, which begins forty days before each Holy Saturday - also known as Ash Wednesday. From this day is a period of reflection for Christians where one begins fasting in preparation for Easter.
Carnivals therefore end on Ash Wednesday with the burial of the sardine - after a week of festivities, dancing and entertainment involving excessive food and drink; the Lenten fast begins with the body well-fortified. And like the body gave up on eating, worshiping Don Carnal, also the moral is relaxed and anonymity of the mask took advantage to outwit Doña Lent and to satirize freely to authorities and settle things that were put off during the year.
Mask carnivals have had their periods of light and shadows in the history of Spain and there have been times since the sixteenth century up to the reign of Charles I in which they were banned. Also with Felipe II and finally during civil war, holding these parties were banned throughout Spain.
The famous Carnival of Cadiz has been influenced by the Italian carnivals and the Genoese merchants also brought it to African destinations.
For Cadiz, we can say that several carnivals, Carnival Grande, and Chico or the "Jartibles" called to those after the burial of the sardine who are reluctant to dismiss the celebrations and that are still dressed in their costumes in the streets. So the celebrations begin as early as January with the competitions Cluster (Troupes, Chirigotas, choirs and quartets) officers in the Gran Teatro Falla and usually ends in late February or early March when Easter falls.
However, the real Carnival of Cádiz takes place on the street where locals and tourists mingle in disguise in the neighborhood of Vine, surrounding the old town by the Market Square and other parts of the beautiful city. Here one drinks, eats, sings, dances and laughs with street or "illegal" jokes to liven up the party (battles of verses full of wit and social criticism).
Parades, concerts, musical performances and fireworks make up a unique holiday atmosphere in the majestic city on the Mediterranean with endless beaches and natural landscapes - peaceful after those days of revelry and fun.