Rijeka Carnival is an internationally recognized event in the Kvarner region, and recently a brand of the city of Rijeka. “Sunday Times”, declared carnival
as one of the most exotic events in the world, and the Rijeka Tourist Board won the “Golden Tourist Heart”, as the organizer of the best tourist events in
Southeast Europe in 2009.
Rijeka Carnival has a centuries-old tradition with influences of Venetian and Austrian carnival elements and Slavic folklore. The carnival is organized by the Tourist Board of the Rijeka since 1982. Carnival events begin with sound of antonian horn, and the carnival flag to mark the beginning of many exciting events. The opening event of the carnival is a carnival queen selection together with handover the keys of the city. Carnival then elects a female representative who will represent them in all public presentations. For many years, Hall Of Youth is official place for selection of Rijeka Carnival Queen.
Mayor of Rijeka handovers city keys to grandmaster of the carnival, what is sign that fun starts and carnival have all the power in the city. Part of Carnival’s Parade is over ten thousand participants, from all over the Croatia and abroad. Major topics of Carnival are mocking to current political situation in country.
Parades move from circular quay (Travel coast), through the Delta and end on the Corso Street. End of the International carnival parade is marked by burning the mascot, to symbolize everything bad that has happened in the last year. Carnival bal, concerts and exhibitions are held in the scope of manifestation, in the Governor’s palace.
Part of the event is the Children’s Carnival Parade, which is an international event for children, together with carnival car rally “Paris-Copper”, which is organized by the Automobile Club „Rijeka“, as a parody of the world-famous rally race “Paris-Dakar”. Race takes place with masked vehicles where all participants must be masked also.
The specificity of the carnival is the participation of so-called Ringers, people dressed with sheep skin with a bell around his waist. End of the carnival is marked by passing of halub ringers, who are involved from the beginning of Carnival. During Carnival, you can experience the combination of historical and cultural traditions, and elements of folklore and mythology. Carnival has been added to the list of 500 most important events in Europe.
At the carnival parade held in 2010 was attended by 8,000 thousand masks distributed in 94 groups, and the procession attended by the 73 allegoric cars. The whole procession is accompanied by almost 100,000 people.