Carnival in Malta

Malta CarnivalsDuring late February Malta and Gozo have a five day celebration just before going into the 40 days of Lent during these days of Carnival Malta turns into a colourful island of fun and folly. This celebration was thought to have been brought over by the Knights of St John back in 1535 but there are some studies that date back as early as 1470. The revellers used to gather up in Valletta right up to 1751 these days you will find all sorts of celebrations happening around the island but the main event still happens in Valletta and Floriana.

The Festivities in Malta are a fun packed extravaganza for all the family but the preparation behind it is takes months of hard work and organisation. The main organisers are The Malta Council of Culture and Arts they set up the programme for the whole 5 days with help from all the parties involved such as the dancers, the float makers and makeup artists etc. They also set the theme and make sure that the floats are appropriate for all the spectators this has caused a few problems in the past but it still remains very colourful and amusing.

The programme consists of Dancing Competitions in Freedom Square and Float Parade on the first day then on the Saturday it is the Children’s Carnival where you will find lots of little cherubs dressed up as pirates, princesses and lots of Minnie Mice can be found The Carnival band comes out in the late afternoon and then the parties begin many of the clubs and rave destinations put on some fabulous themed events.

On the Sunday Valletta is still in full swing and more dancing competitions are held in Merchant Streets John Street, Republic Street and Freedom Square .Then the Grande Final takes place in Floriana where you can see a wonderful show and many of the floats that have been on parade during the five days including the Carnival King .

The Council usually commission a float maker to make this spectacular float which will be the most colourful one out of all them .These floats take a whole year to design and make they are made out of wood and paper marché hence why the float makers pray for sunshine during these five days and they are the impressive size of a tug boat. The floats are judged and if the float makers win they will go up in the categories where category 1 features the best art work. The other brilliant thing about Carnival is the traditional sweet which is called Prinjolata this consists of a volcano of Madeira Sponge, pine nuts, lots of cream and colourful decorations simply wonderful on the lips.

Many Maltese, as well as the authors of MaltaTown.com, tend to cross the Channel and celebrate in Nadur, Gozo. The celebrations here are slightly more outrageous and grotesques in a good way. The events that take place here are more intended for the adults as they tend to let their hair down sometimes a bit too much but that is the joy of Carnival you get to relive your childhood fantasies and be that Knight or Princess and as silly as you like so as the Maltese say VIVA LA KARNIVAL.