Barranquilla for (pre) Carnival, Part I

Barranquilla hosts the the second biggest Carnival celebration in the world, following just Rio. Robyn and I contemplated going for the actual thing, but unfortunately, all the hotels were booked up, and the remaining rooms were upwards of $400 USD, for less than stellar accommodations. We opted go a few days earlier, when rooms were inexpensive, to view some of the pre-Carnival activities.

We took a porta-a-porta van from Cartagena, which was a lot less eventful than the last bus, and cost 21.000 COP.

But there were still snacks!

Every variety of chips you can imagine!

Now that's service

The hostel options were limited so we opted for a luxurious stay at the Smart Suites ($50 USD/person/night).  Ahh… you really appreciate the little things after a few weeks in hostels! The bed felt like a cloud, and the hot shower was a welcome change! The rooftop view and pool were nice touches as well!

I could get used to this...

Everyone we spoke to mentioned that the party starts a month before the main event. We  found the official website online listing all the pre-carnival events. Luckily our hotel was located right by all the action. One morning at breakfast, the reigning Carnival Queen stopped by our hotel! She had a camera crew and security with her. Too bad I didn’t have my camera!

Lots of great restaurants and bars in this area too. We found a place called 101 Chupitas… aka 101 shots! How does this place not exist at home?!

Even the streets are decked out for Carnival! I learned that this crazy guy is La Marimonda, “a hooded figure with a long nose, floppy ears and bright trousers and vest.”  There are several other famous characters that are popular for costumes as well. Can’t wait to check out the parade!

2 Comments on “Barranquilla for (pre) Carnival, Part I”

  1. Those costumes are so interesting! You know I definitely love staying a night in a hotel after so many days in a hostel…it’s a nice relaxing change….well if my budget can afford it that is.

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