INTRODUCTION A colourful parade of dancers and floats marked the opening of the annual Spring carnival in Nice on Saturday (5 February).
INTRODUCTION A colourful parade of dancers and floats marked the opening of the annual Spring carnival in Nice on Saturday (5 February). The festivities coincide with the beginning of the holiday season in the French resort.
SYNOPSIS: Every year huge crowds come to watch the carnival and participate in the spring-like atmosphere created in this Mediterranean city. The two-week long celebration is believed to be descended from ancient pagan rites. Nowadays the carnival coincides with the final festivity before the beginning of Lent. This is the 93rd carnival to be held in Nice.
A colourful procession of dancers, enormous floats, and huge papier mache figures paraded through the city's streets. Local citizens and children help to build the floats, and all take part in the merry-making.
Many carnivals, such as this one in Nice, are held throughout Europe at this time of year, and have become a major tourist attraction. The parade is just the beginning of the festivities. There will be plenty of music, dancing and "flower battles" in the weeks to come.