Rijeka Carnival
Be what you want! Come to Rijeka Carnival!

Rijeka is a one-of-a-kind city for a number of reasons and beside all the specific features it has “that certain something” that makes it different from the rest of the world. That “certain something” is its fifth season. While everyone else live through a year with four seasons, Rijeka, stealing mostly from the winter and just a little bit from the spring, has created its own unique fifth season. It is called the Carnival. And the Carnival in Rijeka has always been written with a capital “C” and enjoyed wholeheartedly for as long as people can remember.


To speak about the Carnival’s beginnings in the city lying on the Rječina River, means telling a several centuries long story. On one winter Sunday in 1982, the carnival was created by three masked groups – the Halubje Bell Ringers, Pehlin Party People and the “Lako ćemo” (No problem) group who passed along the main city promenade. Their spontaneous walk was recognised by the Rijeka Tourist Board’s employees who, without any doubts, decided to give Rijeka back its carnival costume that had laid in the closet for decades. The spontaneous walk of the “founding threesome” has transformed into a well-organised event that sometimes lasts for two whole months during which the masked Rijeka lives on the land, on the sea and in the air.

The fifth season in Rijeka starts on 17th of January, on the Feast Day of St. Anthony. It starts with the raising of the carnival flag which always takes place in a different part of the city. And what is it that makes the Rijeka Carnival? First of all, the “carnival blood” of people in Rijeka has been flowing for centuries and it has been passed down from generation to generation.


You can enjoy yourself in Carnival Queen Pageantmasked auto-rally from Paris to Bakar. And it goes without saying that during the finale no one sleeps. All these events are an introduction to Children's Carnival Parade that passes through the city streets a week before the final one that people call the Big one or the International Rijeka Carnival Parade. The D-day of the Rijeka Carnival, that is, the Day of the big International Carnival Parade is a mix of everything that preceded it during the fifth season. It is a parade of Rijeka’s distinctiveness based on the tradition which lives on even today, in todays’ and future carnival costume. In each stitch of the beautiful costumes, because the Rijeka Carnival is, first and foremost, beautiful and luxurious, each screw of its allegorical floats, each city and suburban carnival group reflects the distinctiveness of Rijeka – the dearest and the most beautiful to us, and extremely interesting for the rest of the world.

And as far as its end is concerned…When everyone thinks the end has come, nothing is over yet – then Rijeka’s Faculty of Maritime Studies, the "POM-F-RI” carnival group, respecting each rule of the carnival funeral rites, in the middle of Rijeka’s waters burns the straw culprit guilty of all charges.

This year Carnival Parade will be held on 26th of February, so if you still do not know where to spend your holidays, book your stay at, in Hostelling International Youth hostel Rijeka. And hurry up, because the reservations have already started!

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