10 of Europe’s best alternative carnivals

February 3, 2017

It’s carnival season in Europe in the lead up to Mardi Gras. We round-up some of the best, beyond the most famous, from festivals dating back centuries to epic parties in Cádiz, Basel and Sicily

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Started in the 17th century as a feast to honour local fishermen, Dunkirk’s is now one of the biggest – and longest-lasting – parties in France; kicking off in January with weekly grand balls. Festivities reach a peak the three days before Ash Wednesday known as Les Trois Joyeuses with costumed bands and parades and, on the Sunday, a unique local twist involving 450kg of herring. So avoid the town hall if you don’t want to get pelted with fish.

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