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Published: October 3rd 2014
This was the most fun-filled of all the Carnivals that I’ve had the opportunity to attend over the years, even moreso than those in Menton and Nice. And it was incredibly inexpensive: only two Euros, about $2.75 .
Did you know that besides world famous “Carnival” or “Mardi Gras” celebrations … exuberant explosions of sensuality just before the somber holy season of Lent … other less extravagant festivals are also held in small towns around the world? Not the least of these is the one held in Loule (pronounced “low… lay”). . In fact, legend has it that the huge parades for which Rio is justly famous today originated as simple religious processions back in Portugal, which were transported to Brazil, Portugal’s former colony. The rest is history, as they say.
Portugal’s largest modern Carnival has been celebrated in Loule for more than 100 years. It’s a family-oriented affair, with kids dressing in costumes and all ages attending the parade held on three consecutive days before the start of Lent on the main avenue downtown. Loule is in the Algarve, Portugal’s southernmost province, where the winter climate is usually sunny and relatively warm, about a dozen miles northeast of
the Algarve’s capital, Faro. For more information go to: http://in-the-algarve.com/events/carnival-loule/
The theme changes from year to year: when Margo and I attended in 2010 it was “The World of Show-Business”. Here are some photos that we took, which will give a basic look at that most joyful and enjoyable mixture of gaily decorated allegorical and sometimes risqué floats, satirical figures, Brazilian and Portuguese samba dancers, street dancing, marching bands, and people of all ages just having a grand time !
To see any of the 38 photos below in full size, just click on it.
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