Carnival in Emilia-Romagna: Where to Go

Bologna Uncovered

Carnival of Cento Float being paraded in Cento, at Emilia-Romagna’s most prestigious Carnival celebration. (Photo credit: Apt Servizi Emilia-Romagna)

February in Italy is all about Carnevale (and the Sanremo Music Festival, but that’s another story). The festive season that precedes the 40 days of Quaresima in Catholic countries culminates on Giovedì Grasso and Martedì Grasso, the last Thursday and Tuesday before the beginning of Lent. Celebrations usually involve parades of floats with playful and imaginative elements. As the Carnival period is connected to Easter, its dates vary, but they usually fall between the beginning of February and March (this year, Fat Thursday falls on Feb. 23 and Fat Tuesday on February 28).

Bologna and Emilia-Romagna do not have famous Carnivals as those of Venice or Viareggio, but we hold our own. So if you happen to be in the area during this time, here are some of the top Carnival celebrations you…

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