We say “exotic” since carnival is still a Caribbean event: color, feathers and sequins are everywhere, accompanied by the sound of drums and music from all over the world. Tasty cocktails will encourage you to move your body for three days straight!
The origins of the Notting Hill Carnival
The carnival was started to give visibility to the Afro-Caribbean community living in the district. It was also a good way to mitigate the tension that existed at that time among immigrants who had just arrived and the original community of Notting Hill.
When it takes place
This year, the carnival will be held on August 27 (Saturday), 28 (Sunday) and 29 (Monday). On Saturday, the festival begins with a percussion competition and continues on Sunday and Monday with the usual parades, including lots of dancing and colors.
One of the two days is reserved for children, so if you are traveling to London with your family you’ll be guaranteed fun for the whole family. After the big parade on Sunday, with thousands of participants and some fifty floats, the party continues on with a number of after-parties which are organized as a culmination of these three intense days.
An opportunity to visit London
The Notting Hill Carnival provides you with the perfect excuse to take a trip to visit capital of the United Kingdom. Summer in London offers moderate temperatures (unlike the heat of Southern Europe!), and you may well have gorgeous weather, so there’s really no better time to go.
While you´re in the Notting Hill district, be sure you also visit the Portobello Market, which is full of antiques and curiosities of all kinds. If you´ve seen the movie “Notting Hill,” which starred Julia Roberts and Hugh Grant, you can also check out some of the places where the plot unfolded.
But London offers so much to do. Speaking of markets, however, another you should visit is Camden Town, in the north. If you like parks, London is for you. There’s the legendary Hyde Park, of course, but also Regent´s Park, Green Park and St James´ Park, among many others. If you’re into musicals, be sure to go see one (especially if you are traveling with your family). A great walk can be found along the Thames, and you’ll also encounter several essential landmarks, such as Big Ben, the London Eye, St Paul´s Cathedral, and Tower Bridge.
Whatever your interests, London is an ideal city for a getaway this summer. Rent an apartment in London and enjoy this festival.