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Carnival, Festival, Fasnacht

By August 19, 2022No Comments

Barranquilla Carnival in Barranquilla, Colombia

In honor of Santa Barbara’s famed Fiesta celebration this month, we are highlighting the top carnivals around the world.

There is nothing like a local celebration to immerse oneself in the culture of a destination!

Due to the popularity of carnivals, planning in advance and with an experienced travel advisor is key.  Some travelers prefer lodging near the action with a view of the festivities, others a quiet place to retreat to after the party.  When it comes to festival travel, it pays to work with someone “in the know”.

Important to consider when planning for a carnival/festival is; seating for the best view, booking transportation as it can be scarce, COVID and other potential health requirements and of course lodging- which fills up fast.  The weather continues to play an important role in travel, especially outdoor events, so make sure to consider the time of year.

For inspiration, check out a few of our favorite carnivals, festivals and Fasnacht’s:

Barranquilla Carnival in Barranquilla, Colombia

While not too many people have heard of Barranquilla Carnival it is in fact Colombia’s most import carnival celebration. It is also one of the largest carnivals in the world, attended by millions.

It is a pre-Lenten carnival that runs for four days prior to Ash Wednesday considered a must-see event. Carnival features amazing costumed parades, streets parties and a mix of Caribbean and Latin music.

Read more about Barranquilla Carnival here.

Quebec Winter Carnival, Canada

Quebec City, Quebec, Canada

The Quebec Winter Carnival is different to most because it happens smack bang in the middle of winter. It is one of the biggest carnivals in the world with over a million people attending every year. It features dog-sled racing, snow sculptures, snow baths, sleigh rides, balls, ice skating and night time winter parades.

This carnival gives the locals are reason to stop hibernating and just get outside and embrace the cold weather and drink a Caribou. A giant snowman is the mascot who lives in a five-story ice castle that gets remade every year for carnival.

Read more about Quebec Winter Carnival here.

The Carnival of Venice, Italy

Nowhere celebrates carnival quite like Venice. This is the most extravagant and elegant carnival in the world. The carnival is famous for its revellers wearing traditional 18th century masks and costumes. Wearing masks which dates to the 13th century when people would disguise themselves to hide their social class and engage in some debauchery.

Venice provides the most majestic backdrop for the costumes and masks that fill the city’s streets and alleyways. Venice Carnival is also famous for its luxurious masquerade balls and parties that are held during carnival.  Venice Carnival runs for 20 days but it is the last two weeks when most of the festivities occur. It is a must-see event that attracts millions every year.

Read more about Venice Carnival here.

Fasnacht in Basel, Switzerland

Carnival in Switzerland is known as Fasnacht which is celebrated all over the country. However, the largest and most popular celebration occurs in the city of Basel. Basel Fasnacht has been recognised by UNESCO as being a ‘Masterpiece of the Oral and Intangible Heritage of Humanity’.

This carnival lasts exactly 72 hours in what the locals call the three best days of the year. Basel Fasnacht will transport you to another world. It features many traditions and customs that are centuries old. You will hear traditional music, see 20,000 traditional folkloric masked costumers parading around the town. There is also a beautiful lantern festival that lights up the city streets.

Read more about Basel Fasnacht here.

Click to plan a trip with a professional travel advisor
Fall Foliage
Summer brings on a feast of festivals and fun, before giving way to fall, when the foliage explodes into life like popping fireworks. Flashes of brilliant color sweep across forests elevating the breathtaking scenery to new heights and illuminating magnificent mountainsides with a full range of autumnal hues.

Canada and New England are the top destinations for foliage viewing.  Now is the best time to plan your fall foliage trip, our experienced travel advisors are standing by ready to assist.

Santa Barbara Travel Bureau Client Appreciation Event
You’re invited to a travel event in our beautiful downtown State Street office!

Thursday August 22, from 5-7
1028 State Street, Santa Barbara

Join our team for drinks and apps in a fun open house style, mingling with seasoned travelers and vacation experts.

Learn about exciting destinations and the latest trends in travel.  Exclusive promotions from both Silversea and Royal Caribbean Cruises.


At Silversea, not only do we know Canada and New England, but we know cruising. We know that our small ships are perfect for accessing the off the beaten track ports that other ships simply cannot reach. We know that some guests prefer an expedition cruise while others prefer enthralling cities. We also know that our friendly ambience, crew to guest ratio of nearly 1:1 and gastronomic excellence make us a leader in luxury cruising.

All-inclusive, all-encompassing and all around the world – Silversea is the only choice when it comes to Canada and New England.

In coordination with Santa Barbara Bureau, Silversea is pleased to present a $500 SAVINGS PER SUITE or $250 SAVINGS for solo travelers. Valid on 2022 or 2023 voyages. Date of Issue: August 25, 2022 Book by Date: September 7, 2022 TO REDEEM THIS CERTIFICATE, CALL Santa Barbara Bureau

Book Now
Experience Carnival in Venice on a Regent Seven Seas “European Indulgence” cruise.


Indulge on board or on shore with your shipboard credit, from luxurious spa treatments to Regent Choice Shore Excursions. Then, look forward to an extra night on us in your last port of call before heading home.

EVERY LUXURY INCLUDED • FREE Airfare • FREE Unlimited Shore Excursions • FREE Specialty Restaurants • FREE Unlimited Beverages, Including Fine Wines and Spirits • FREE Unlimited Wi-Fi • FREE Pre-Paid Gratuity  • FREE Valet Laundry Service

*European Indulgence offer is capacity controlled and applies to new select 2023 Mediterranean and Northern Europe bookings only made between July 1 – August 31, 2022. Offer includes $500 Shipboard Credit per Suite and 1 Free Post Cruise Hotel Night. Availability is limited and restrictions apply.