Opening & Official Dates
The Rethymno Carnival Commity is pleased to announce the opening of Rethymnno Carnival 2017 and the official dates.
With this year theme “Dreaming in unity” the slogan and basic element of Carnival 2017, the strongest carnival group in the country a huge hug for everybody, participants and visitors from around the world are invited this year to “live & experience” under the same roof, the dream!
Intense planning is underway for the 2017 event, with many volunteers and carnival groups involved in the organization of various events. The Grand Rethymno Carnival kick off was on Saturday February 4th 2017 at the Unkown soldier sqr, followed by the presentation of the costumes of the teams that will take part in the Carnival of 2017. At the official opening event the local community along with visitors and volunteers enjoyed a spectacular opening with fireworks, satirical theatrical scenes, promotional initiatives, live concert by SBARAQUACK in a non-stop live program with Funk, Disco, Rock ‘ n roll, Balkan rhythms and many other surprises.
The Carnival started by bringing the message of Carnival all over Rethymno city and the cities of Chania & Herakleon through road shows known as “Forerunner”, where the festive atmosphere spreads to the local communities.
One of the most important brand events of Rethymno Carnival is the famous Treasure Hunt.
These educational and fun events with information and hidden messages based on the local history of Rethymno started on 4th & 5th of February on the 20th Children’s Treasure Hunt 2017, followed by the 28th Treasure Hunt for adults on the weekend of Saturday 11th and Sunday 12th of February. This year Treasure Hunt is very crucial since Rethymno Carnival will attempt to beat the Guinness record for the largest treasure hunt in the world!
Welcome the spring time and walk through the picturesque paths of the historic center on Tuesday 14th of February where the classical Greek style Serenades will take place and on 24th of February were the Cretan traditional Serenades will take place, a custom revival that goes back to the history of Rethymno and goes on till today. On those special days you can follow the carnival rhythm all over Rethymno and enjoy traditional “local meze” ofered to all the participants.
The Greek custom has it to start the fasting with the last meet consumption on Thursday, February 16th on the day of “Tsiknopempti”. Enjoy the barbeque, the special Cretan dishes offered in famous restaurants and taverns inside and outside the historic center and dance along with the Carnival groups in all the street parties and happenings during that day.
Put on your costume, jump on your bike and join the cycling ride around the city for kids & adults . On Thursday February 23rd 19:00 at the Unknown soldier sqr, cycling fans of all ages disguised in their carnival uniforms ride their bikes filling the streets of the Historic Center with joy and imagination.
The Great Carnival Evening Parade is on Saturday 26th of February starting at 21:00 and finishing with a live party. Not much needed to learn about the most famous event of the Carnival, just be sure that this night will give you wonderful memories and the eager desire to come back to Rethymno to live the experience all over again.
The Carnival celebration ends with the Ash Monday on the 27th of February. The Greeks leave behind every sinful attitude and non-fasting foods to prepare their bodies and souls for the Orthodox Easter. On Ash Monday we throw the traditional “Koulouma” based on the Greek Orthodox monks diet, a festive with vegetarian delicatessens offered in every village and in the town. Been soup, “lagana” bread and desert “Halvas” are the dishes of the day that you have to taste.
Join us during our Carnival Festive Celebration to learn more about the local history and the authentic identity of Rethymno. Witness the local community’s cooperation between different groups of participants, see us working all together to a common theme passing the global message of unity and solidarity to the people.
The Carnival of Rethymno is a creative cultural institution which shows the special character of the local population and the local initiative and involvement. This common passion is exactly what aids the start up of many established theater groups, ateliers, hand-crafts, art venues e.t.c. here in Rethymno. All the floats are made by Rethymnian artists and are always based on recyclable materials. Also most of the carnival uniforms are made by local crafts, another way for people of Rethymno to work together and contribute to the local economy. 2.000 Rethymnians, including many Rethymnian entertainers, perform at the main events as well as promotional events leading up to the carnival. Llast year we had 45 Carnival groups with 33 floats on the parade, 18.000 participants and more than 100.000 visitors of all ages from all over the world that had the opportunity to celebrate and enjoyed the Carnival.
Visit the Rethymno Carnival 2017 and participate to the most fun and creative Carnival festival of Greece.