More than 100 years of history contemplate one of the best carnivals in Spain. The Sitges Carnival is not only one of the oldest in Catalonia but also one of the most spectacular.
Tens of thousands of people invade the streets of Sitges dressed in very striking outfits, loaded with feathers and colours, trying to emulate the atmosphere of Brazilian carnivals, like that of Rio de Janeiro. The floats, pulled by tractors, also appear overloaded with decoration and people dance unleashed on them. The Sitges Carnival lives more in the motto of “anything goes here” than in the sarcastic and critical manner of other more traditional carnivals in Spain.
In the Sitges Carnival, the carnival groups are called “Colles” and the oldest of them dates back to 1976. Great year, because it was the one I was born in, all things considered.
Some of the most outstanding ones are Erem Pocs 1976, Paperets club (in charge of filling the streets of Sitges with confetti), Markatú Batucada (who bring the Brazilian rhythm with their music), Colla Huerto’S (theatre workers who usually interact with the public), Sabor a Xocolà (one of the most emblematic ones), among others.
Sitges 2020 Carnival Program
Among the most outstanding events of the Sitges 2020 Carnival are
Saturday 15th February
08:00h A 14:00h 1st AMERICAN CARNIVAL AND CARNAZUMBA. Free activity. Pre-registration for the Americana at the reception of the Municipal Pool as places are limited. Carnazumba outside the pool, no registration required. Place: Municipal swimming pool in Sitges.
18:00h PRESENTATION OF THE CARNESTOLT 2020 SONG: The song that will animate the whole week of carnival will be presented.
20:00h PRESENTATION OF THE CARNIVAL QUEEN Sitges 2020: a thrilling show that will fill it with light, music, fire and colour. At the end, the retinue parades through the streets of the city with this route: Fragata, Paseo de la Ribera, Bonaire, Parellades, Cap de la Vila, Jesús, Franccesc Gumà. Place: La Fragata Stage
Wednesday 19th February
3rd CONTEST OF BALCONIES, FACADES AND CARNIVAL WINDOWS: from the 19th to the 28th of February admire the impressive facades, windows and balconies that the people of Sitges decorate with care and enthusiasm.
Thursday, February 20: Lard Thursday
19:20h at The Frigate, UP of His Majesty Carnestoltes At the end of the event, Her Majesty and her entourage will make a procession with the following route : Passeig de la Ribera, Bonaire, Parellades, Cap de la Vila (where Her Majesty will meet the Queen of Carnival and her entourage), Major and Town Hall Square, where Her Majesty will take possession of the traditional PREDICOT (this will happen around 20.20).
21:30h XATONADA WITH CARRUSSEL – CASINO PRADO: with the visit of Her Majesty Carnestoltes and the presence of the Queen of Carnival 2020 and her entourage.
21:30h XATONADA POPULAR – ABPS with the show of Cabaret Carnavalero with Mercè Garcia and secret and surprising companions! Place: Palau del Rei Moro
22:30h, XATONADA-BAILE, with the assistance of Her Majesty Carnestoltes, the Queen of the Carnival of Sitges and her entourage. Music by the Quartet Soundtrack. Place: Salon Teatro Societat Recreativa El Retiro
Friday 21st February
9.00h VISITS TO SCHOOLS AND RESIDENCES: Throughout the day, HM Carnestoltes and the Queen of Carnival Sitges 2019 with their entourages visit schools, residences and grandparents’ houses to take the Carnival everywhere. HM Carnestoltes and the Queen invite all school children to prepare costumes and decorate classrooms and schools.
17:00h: XIC CARNIVAL – RETREAT (Small Carnival – Retreat). All the children in Sitges are offered the possibility of getting to know the Sitges carnival. Thus, El Retiro will also be able to enjoy the costumes that the children will make in their schools. His Majesty Carnestoltes and the Queen of the Carnival of Sitges will attend. Place: Salon Teatro Societat Recreativa El Retiro.
18:30h RUA D’ANTES: a journey through the history and nostalgia of Sitges’ Carnival, led by Her Majesty Carnestoltes and closed by the Queen of Carnival, where the whole town of Sitges can participate dressed up as they see fit and accompanied by two charangas that will liven up the party as far as Paseo de la Ribera. There, the party will go on. The tour will be as follows: Cap de la Vila, Parellades, Bonaire, Passeig de la Ribera up to the height of the little garden of the painter Pere Pruna. Place: Cap de la Vila
23:45h “ALL SUCCESS” PARTY: Casino Prado. Party with the kings of the megamix DJ’s Toni Peret, Quique Tejada and José María Castells. Until 06:00 they’ll be playing hits from the 80s and 90s. Free admission after withdrawal of invitations at the Casino Prado offices. From 02:30h: 10 euros + 1 drink.
Saturday 22nd February
10:00h, VISIT TO THE MUNICIPAL MARKET by HM Carnestoltes and the Queen of Carnival Sitges 2020 with their respective retinues.
11:00h RACE OF DISCOUNTED BEDS: presentation and exhibition of the disguised beds participating in the race. At 12 o’clock the crazy RACE OF DISPLAYED BEDS will start in front of the gardens of the Casino Prado Suburense, with the animation of the charanga Buscant el To. Route of the Bed Race: Francesc Gumà, Jesús, Cap de la Vila, Parellades, Sant Pau, Passeig de la Ribera, Sant Pere, Parellades, Bonaire, Passeig de la Ribera up to the height of the gardens of the painter Pere Pruna. It is one of the most fun activities in the Sitges 2020 Carnival.
15:00h DINAR POPULAR DE BENVINGUTS: in the Hort de Can Falç. Her Majesty Carnestoltes, the Queen of Carnival, her entourages and all those who wish to, will eat a spectacular carnival menu together. The menu will be priced at £15.
16:00h CONCERT OF THE BARD: great Party of the lovers of the Bard, with Mikel Roig and Dalton Band. It will be presided over by HM Carnestoltes, the Queen of Carnival Sitges 2019 and their respective entourages. Venue: Gardens of El Retiro Recreational Society.
17:00h – 22:00h, TEQUEREQUE FESTA: Carnival percussion festival that will begin with an exhibition in the Town Hall Square. First the invited groups will perform and then the children’s section Markatú Batuquets that, together with Markatú Batucada, will form part of a parade through the centre of Sitges. Route: Plaça de l’Ajuntament, Carrer Major, Cap de la Vila, Parellades, Bonaire, Passeig de la Ribera, 1r de maig, Plaça de la Indústria, Marquès de Montroig, Parellades and Cap de la Vila (final exhibition).
Sunday, February 23rd
12:00h. SITGES CARNIVAL CHILDREN’S ROUTE: Route: Avinguda Sofia, Passeig de la Ribera (sea side) up to the height of El Greco’s statue and back along Passeig de la Ribera (mountain side), c/ Bassa Rodona, Plaça del Pou Vedre, c/ Espalter, c/ Sant Francesc and Cap de la Vila.
19:30h. RUA DE LA DISBAUXA: Route: starting from the end of l’Avinguda Sofia, Passeig de la Ribera (sea side), La Fragata, Passeig de la Ribera (mountain side), Bassa Rodona, Plaça del Pou Vedre, Espalter, Sant Francesc and Cap de la Vila.
23:30. EL RETIRO CARNIVAL FESTIVAL: With Dj Lagarto and some other artists who will entertain with the best festive music, hits of the moment and the most carnival themes of their long list of creations. Venue: Recreational Society El Retiro Assembly Hall
Monday 24th February
FROM 11:00h to 14h. QUITXALLA FEST: children’s festival with activities, performances, workshops and a popular chocolate party for all children and their families, with the presence of Her Majesty Carnestoltes, the Queen and Child Queen of Sitges Carnival. Music, street theatre, puppets and travelling humour from the Miramar to Can Bota Park At the same time, QUIRALIA will offer giant games, inflatables and carnival workshops, and FROGGIES will put the finishing touches to a fabulous carnival photocall for the little ones in Can Bota Park. From 12 o’clock onwards, they’ll be handing out chocolate and cake to everyone. Place: Tour from Miramar to Parc de Can Bota and performance in Parc de Can Bota.
17:30-19:00. MERIENDA CARNAVALESCA – CASINO PRADO: at the Teatro Casino Prado Suburense, with the presence of the Children’s Queen, a snack for children from the children’s groups of the Casino Prado and a party with the entertainment group “Xaxipiruli”, with the assistance of HM Carnestoltes and the Queen of Carnival.
Tuesday 25th February
15:00h. RUA INFANTIL: Route: Avinguda Sofia, Passeig de la Ribera (sea side) up to the height of the statue of El Greco and back along the Passeig de la Ribera (mountain side), c/ Bassa Rodona, Plaça del Pou Vedre, c/ Espalter, c/ Sant Francesc and Cap de la Vila.
21:00h. RUA DEL EXTERMINI: Route: exit from Passeig de la Ribera with Avenida Sofia and direction La Fragata, return along Paseo de la Ribera and climb up Bassa Rodona, Pou Vedre, Espalter, Sant Francesc and end at Cap de la Vila.
Wednesday, February 26th
12.30h VERMUT OF THE LIVING: popular vermouth for all those who are ALIVE – or think they are. Sardines with bread and tomato, photocall, concert by Víctor Erena, DJ Yuri and awards ceremony of the Balconies and Carnimal competitions. In addition, among the people attending, there will be a draw for a trip for two people to the islands in business class and with a car included. Place: Hort de Can Falç
18.50h RUA DE SM CARNESTOLTES: in the Town Hall Square, H.M. Carnestoltes will celebrate the Thanksgiving Day with the following route, Town Hall Square, c / Major, Cap de la Vila, c / de les Parellades, c / Bonaire, Paseo de la Ribera.
19.20h END OF THE PARTY – BURIAL OF HM CARNESTOLTS: on the Ribera promenade, at the El Greco monument, the will and last will of HM Carnestoltes will be read. Here ends the huge carnival party of Sitges 2020… And you will have to wait 365 days to get excited again with one of the most impressive carnivals in Europe.
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