Carnival in Tenerife


Carnival in Tenerife

Carnival in Tenerife is one of the most fascinating attractions on the island. Held usually between February and March, it attracts crowds of tourists every year. Its dates vary each year, as they depend on the Easter holidays. In 2022, it starts on January 24th, but the main street party, known as the “Fiesta,” begins on February 25th and lasts until March 1st.

The Santa Cruz de Tenerife Carnival is among the top ten most famous and best carnival events in the world. At the top of this ranking are the vibrant and colorful Carnival of Rio de Janeiro in Brazil and the incredibly spectacular Venetian Masked Carnival. While the Carnival in Tenerife may be a slightly smaller event, it certainly does not lack the typical splendor of the Canary Islands. During the carnival week, the streets of Santa Cruz de Tenerife are filled with music, joy, dance, and a multitude of colorful costumes. When it comes to events in Tenerife, this is undoubtedly an event worth noting and adding to the calendar. You can find the detailed schedule of the 2023 carnival events below.

Carnival Celebration (Final Week) / Street Party

The carnival in Santa Cruz de Tenerife begins on Friday, the day after Fat Thursday, with a spectacular opening parade. During this parade, all carnival groups march through the main streets of the city, announcing the arrival of the carnival. The parade lasts over 4 hours, starting at Parque de la Granja and ending at Plaza de España. Here, you can see the Carnival Queen and her Court, each in a highly elaborate vehicle. Towards the end, the nighttime fiesta begins. The celebration continues on the streets of the city until the early morning hours of the next day. The nighttime fiesta takes place every night until Ash Wednesday.

Daytime Fiesta

The daytime celebration starts on Saturday at noon. Saturday is known as the Day of Dance, and numerous stages are set up in the city center where Latin artists perform. One of the main carnival streets is “Bethencourt Afonso Street,” popularly known as “Calle San José.” Sunday of the carnival is Family Day. Entire multigenerational families come to Santa Cruz, often dressed thematically to stand out from the crowd. Monday is another day of celebration, with performances by various artists on the stages set up throughout the city. Tuesday marks the end of the carnival with the grand finale parade along Avenida de Anaga. Once again, you can see the Queen and her Court, as well as all the colorful dance groups.

The highlight of the carnival in Tenerife takes place on Ash Wednesday, the first day of Lent, with the symbolic burial of the Sardine. It is a symbolic farewell to the carnival, and participants often wail and lament loudly. The Sardine is a gigantic cardboard structure that is burned at the end of the event.

Carnival in Tenerife – Pre-Street Party

Before the grand fiesta on the city streets begins, the Santa Cruz Carnival features many other attractive events. Various contests take place, including a costume competition where the most creatively decorated vehicles are awarded, as well as the selection of the official carnival song and the Queens of the Third Age and Children. During this time, there is also an official presentation at the City Hall of the carnival queen candidates. The candidates appear in incredibly original and creative costumes, specially designed for the occasion by renowned designers. Results are announced at a grand gala held on the Wednesday before Fat Thursday, just before the start of the street party. The gala also involves hundreds of amateur artist-dancers, dressed thematically in beautiful, shiny, and colorful costumes, creating a unique atmosphere and unforgettable impressions.

Carnival in Tenerife 2023

The dates for the Santa Cruz de Tenerife Carnival 2023 have already been confirmed. It will take place from Friday, February 17, 2023, to Sunday, February 26, 2023, preceded by events in theaters and the convention center. The 2019 carnival in Santa Cruz was the last one celebrated with complete normalcy, as subsequent years faced challenges such as the calima in 2020 and the pandemic. Additionally, the carnival date was shifted in 2022 for the same reasons. Therefore, it is said that the 2023 carnival will be one of the biggest in recent years. Locals are already sewing and purchasing their costumes, while tourists are booking flights and hotels. You can start planning your carnival trip to Tenerife. Below, you will find the event’s theme and schedule.


Theme of Carnival 2023: New York


Carnival Events Schedule 2023:


February 14, Tuesday – Concierto de Los Fregolinos

8:30 PM – Fregolino Concert

Event Venue: Teatro Guimerá

February 15, Wednesday – Gala de Elección de La Reina

9:30 PM – Carnival Queen Gala

Event Venue: Centro Internacional de Ferias y Congresos

February 16, Thursday – Festival de la Zarzuela

8:30 PM – Zarzuela Festival

Event Venue: Teatro Guimerá

February 17, Friday – Cabalgata Anunciadora

8:00 PM – Opening Parade and Street Carnival
10:30 PM – Nighttime Dance Party

February 18, Saturday – Ritmo y Armonía Rondallas

5:30 PM – Performances
6:00 PM – Rondallas Parade
7:00 PM – Rhythm and Harmony Contest
10:30 PM – Nighttime Dance Party

February 19, Sunday – Carnaval del Día

11:00 AM – Nifú, Nifá
12:00 PM – Fregolinos
1:00 PM – Daytime Carnival

February 20, Monday – Bailes de Carnaval

5:30 PM – Performances
10:30 PM – Carnival Monday Night Party

February 21, Tuesday – Desfile principal del Carnaval

11:00 AM – Nifú, Nifá
12:00 PM – Fregolinos
4:00 PM – Main Carnival Parade
8:00 PM – Nighttime Dance Party

February 22, Wednesday – Enterro de la Sardina

10:00 PM – Burial of the Sardine
10:30 PM – Nighttime Dance Party

February 24, Friday – Coso infantil y Festival de Galardonados

6:00 PM – Children’s Carnival Parade
8:00 PM – Festival of Winners
11:30 PM – Nighttime Dance Party

February 25, Saturday – Carnaval del Día

1:00 PM – Daytime Carnival
9:30 PM – Nighttime Dance Party

February 26, Sunday – Gran Fin de Fiestas Carnaval 2023

10:00 AM – Exhibition and Vintage Car Parade
11:00 AM – Nifú, Nifá
12:00 PM – Zarzuela
5:00 PM – Carnival Finale with Fireworks Display


Night Events: The biggest nighttime parties always take place after the main carnival events – the Main Carnival Parade, Burial of the Sardine, and during the final weekend (Friday and Saturday).

You can find the official carnival program on the Carnivaland website.

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