All the fun of Carnival is back in Barcelona!

Once again, the craziest celebration is here. After an edition marked by the Covid-19 pandemic, this year, Their Majesties will be back on the streets with an Arribo created by the Comediants theatrical company. The festival starts on Maundy Thursday, 24 February, with around thirty activities, and ends on Ash Wednesday, 2 March, with the Burial of the Sardine.

Their Majesties kicking off the Barcelona Carnival / Photo: Ajuntament de Barcelona

The parade will start at the end of La Rambla with the triumphant entrance of King Tótil and Queen Belluga, who will be leading the Carnival entourage, followed by those who own or work in the kiosks on Las Ramblas, who will be the stars of the parade this year.

Next, accompanied by the Carnival giants, the Capgrossos de la Rambla and the press distributors, the festive procession will make its way up the Rambla, stopping at the various kiosks and presenting the ambassadors of the old towns of Barcelona, and representatives of the seven deadly sins.

Once at the Palau de la Virreina, the entourage will make its presentation, and the king will proclaim his reign, opening a week of revelry with one of the most eagerly awaited moments of the evening: the Taronjada. This year, music, fireworks and orange confetti will kick off Barcelona’s craziest party!

Carnival giants in the Town Hall square / Photo: Ajuntament de Barcelona
Their Majesties making the Carnival opening speech / Photo: Ajuntament de Barcelona

The fun extends throughout the city

Throughout the weekend there will be Carnival parades in the city’s different neighbourhoods. This year there will be around thirty parades and over fifty activities that will fill neighbourhood centres, civic centres, local association centres and markets with fancy dress competitions, exhibitions, masked balls and fancy dress workshops.

To get there, take the Hola Barcelona Travel Card and travel around Barcelona in comfort!

We recommend you consult the full programme on the City Council website and check for possible last-minute changes, and whether or not spaces and activities are subject to capacity restrictions.

Make-up is one of the protagonists of Carnival / Photo: Ben Kerckx in Pixabay
Confetti as a symbol of celebration / Photo: Gabriel Rodrigues in Pexels

The Carnival menu

Another feature of this festival is food. The tradition of stuffing yourself as if the world were about to end has a historical explanation. Carnival is the celebration that comes just before Lent, a period in which the Catholic religion formerly prohibited the consumption of meat and eggs.

The two days when gastronomy takes centre stage are Maundy Thursday and the Burial of the Sardine.

On Maundy Thursday it’s traditional to eat botifarra blanca (white sausage), tortilla (Spanish omelette), rancho (a big stew) and coca de llardons (suet pastry). To go with this dessert, sweet wine, muscatel and cava are classics.

With regard to the Burial of the Sardine, the tradition was to go out for a meal to say goodbye to the festival. Today it is traditional to eat sardines and herrings. However, burying sardines can have another meaning as well: Lent also meant a period of sexual abstinence.

Market vendor showing botifarra blanca (white sausage) / Photo: Ajuntament de Barcelona
Sardines, a traditional meal to say goodbye to the festival.

On 2 March, events and activities are also planned in many of the city’s districts. If you don’t want to miss the festivities and to travel there in comfort, check all the metro and bus information at before leaving home.

Poster of Barcelona Carnival 2022 / Photo: Ajuntament de Barcelona