While most associate February with Valentine's Day and Black Love Day, the month also signifies the start of Carnival season. Dozens of Caribbean nations and territories—as well as other diaspora communities—celebrate the vibrant festivals each year.
Residents and tourists alike play mas as they take to the streets in colorful costumes and traditional garb that represent the various bands and groups. Participants move through the streets well into the early morning as they dance, chant, and vibe to the sounds of local drummers and DJs. The overall theme of carnival season is similar, but each destination's event has its own personality and itinerary. And, oftentimes, folks will island hop to catch as many Carnival celebrations as they can.
If you're ready to join in on the action, we've curated this easy-to-follow list of the world's Carnival events taking place this year.
February is home to some of the top Carnival experiences globally. Many Caribbean-islanders will argue that Trinidad's is the best ever, but Brazil also puts on a phenomenal display as well. The month kicks off with Aruba and ends with Santiago, Dominican Republic. Below you will find dates to each event going down during the month.
- Oranjestad, Aruba: February 4-22, 2023
- Ponce, Puerto Rico: February 16 - 21, 2023
- Saint-Pierre, Martinique: February 16 - 22, 2023
- Rio de Janeiro, Brazil: February 17 - 25, 2023
- San Pedro, Belize: February 18, 2023 - March 2, 2023
- Barranquilla, Colombia: February 18 - 21, 2023
- Haiti: February 19, 2023
- Curaçao: February 20, 2023
- Port-of-Spain Trinidad & Tobago: February 15 – 22, 2023
- Guadeloupe: February 20, 2023
- La Vega and Santiago, Dominican Republic: February 23-27, 2023
March is a pretty quiet month as far as celebrations go, but things pick back up in April. The month ushers in with the British Virgin Islands and immediately moves to Jamaica. You can find April's full roster below.
- British Virgin Islands: April 7, 2023
- Kingston, Jamaica: April 12 - 17, 2023
- St. Thomas/USVI: April 26-30, 2023
- St. Maarten/ St. Martin: April 30, 2023
Don't count June out, as everyone heads to the pink sand beaches of beautiful Bermuda for its events.
- Bermuda: June 16-19, 2023
During the summer month, expect events in St. Lucia, Cuba and more. Oh, and just because they're not as big as a Brazil or Trinidad Carnival, it doesn't mean they don't pack a punch as far as excitement.
- St. Vincent and the Grenadines: July 3 - 4, 2023
- Castries, St. Lucia: July 12 - 19, 2023
- Cuba: July 18- 27, 2023
The main events wrap up in August, although the Islands of the Bahamas celebrate Junkanoo just after Christmas and into the New Year. Easily the hottest month of the year, in many ways, you can expect Grenada's Spicemas and Barbados' Cropover to be the most sought-after events at that time.
- St. John, Antigua and Barbuda: August 1-8, 2023
- Grenada: August 1-15, 2023
- Saint Kitts and Nevis: August 8, 2023
- Bridgetown, Barbados: August 7 - 14, 2023