The Notting Hill Carnival takes place every year over the August Bank Holiday weekend in West London and is one of London’ biggest and best events, as well as the biggest street festival in Europe. The carnival was first held in 1964, with its roots coming from the Trinidad Carnival.
The Notting Hill Carnival has continually stayed true to the roots of the Caribbean, bringing the heart, soul and spirit to the diversity of London. When the carnival started around 500 people attended the festival, and today it attracts hundreds of thousands to London and is continuing to grow in popularity with over a million people attending over the carnival weekend. Everyone is welcome and is encouraged to take part in the celebrations.
The carnival theme is a celebration of the Caribbean and includes steel bands, calypso and soca music and performers, sound systems with giant speakers set up, food and drink stalls and competitions. The festivities showcases a vibrant sea of colourful decorated floats and costumed performers moving through the streets of West London. There is a Children Parade as a part of the Family Day, where colourful costumes are displayed with dancing along the carnival route.
The main parade is the grand finale on the final day of the festivities, bringing with it as many as 60 bands and individuals in extravagant costumes, dancing to the diverse and rhythmic genres of music from the sound systems and the steel bands, as well amazing performances from international artists. For anyone who loves a big party, the Notting Hill Carnival is the place to be in in the summer. Making use of the London Transport system is the best way of travelling to the carnival from anywhere around the city.
Visit the official carnival website for more information.