Rethymno's Carnival 2019, the Carnival of Crete

Plan your visit to Rethymno this February!

Since 1914 beautiful Renaissance Rethymno has been celebrating the carnival with its many humoristic events. The Rethymnians through laughter and their comical antics are paying every year their tribute to "His Excellence, The King of the Carnival."Since 1914 beautiful Renaissance Rethymno has been celebrating the carnival with its many humoristic events. The Rethymnians through laughter and their comical antics are paying every year their tribute to "His Excellence, The King of the Carnival."

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Some 20.000 participants and more than 100.000 guests are expected to visit Rethymno's Carnival Events, which combine Fun & Vacation.
The countdown has begun for the well known Rethymno Carnival taking place in Rethymno-Crete in March 2019. Intense planning is under-way for the 2019 events, with many volunteers and carnival teams involved in the organization of various events, such as street parties and performances, parades, treasure hunts, cycling tours etc, which will last for three weeks starting from January 27th.

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Hot Dates!!!
Enjoy a spectacular opening on Thursday, February 21st with fireworks, satirical theater performances, promotional initiatives, live concerts in a non-stop live program and many other surprises.
One of the most important brand events of Rethymno's Carnival is the famous Treasure Hunt, on Saturday, February 23rd & Sunday, February 24th.  2016 Treasure Hunt was very crucial since Rethymno Carnival attempted to beat the  Guinness World record for the largest treasure hunt in the world and won it with 1418 participants!

Welcome the springtime and walk through the picturesque paths of the historic center with the Old Greek Serenades on Thursday, February 26th & the Cretan traditional Serenades on Friday, March 8th. On those special days, you can follow the carnival rhythm all over Rethymno and enjoy traditional “local meze” offered to all the participants.
The Greek custom of fasting meat consumption lasts till Thursday, February 28th  on the day of “Tsiknopempti”. Enjoy the barbeque and special Cretan dishes offered in all restaurants and taverns inside and outside the historic center and dance along with the Carnival groups in all the street parties and happenings during that day.

A Children's Carnival parade & Night Parade is on Saturday, March 9th finishing with a live party and on Sunday, March 10th noon is the Great Carnival Parade. Not much needed to learn about the most famous event of the Carnival, just be sure that these days will give you wonderful memories and the eager desire to come back to Rethymno to live the experience all over again.

The Carnival celebration ends with the Shrove Monday on March 11th. The Greeks leave behind non-fasting foods to prepare their bodies and souls for the Orthodox Easter. On Shrove Monday we throw the traditional “Koulouma” based on the Greek Orthodox monks diet, with vegetarian delicatessens offered in every village and in the town. Been soup, “Lagana” bread and “Halvas” for dessert are the dishes of the day that you have to taste. Don' t miss the widespread “kite flying” custom that takes place on that day with kites flying all above the beach of Rethymno or in the fields of the countryside.
During the Carnival period, Rethymno area holds a wide variety of diverse experiences to choose from. We encourage you to explore Rethymno this Carnival period and enjoy besides the Carnival Events, Rethymno's magnificent nature, and its delicious food based on the world famous Cretan Diet which includes olive oil, wine, cheese and a lot of wild greens.
Rethymno is also the ideal playground for outdoor adventure enthusiasts. In Rethymno, there is never a shortage of things to do. From participating to the Carnival preparation to visiting cultural treasures such as the Fortress, the Arkadi Monastery or Eleutherna Museum and discovering hidden gems like Mili gorge, during the carnival period your days in Rethymno can be as busy as you want them to be.
The Carnival of Rethymno invites whoever deeply hope for better days and whoever sees rainbow colors beyond grey to be part of the large, emotional and fresh Team of the Carnival of Rethymno and share, create, have fun and experience things that nobody wants to miss.
You can see all the details about Rethymno's Carnival at and fb: carnivalofcrete


The Program:

Thursday 21st February 2019  Opening with a big Ceremony that welcomes the new Carnival

Friday 22nd February 2019 Party of the Carnival Teams of the 30rd Treasure Hunt

Saturday 23rd & Sunday 24th February 2019 30rd Treasure Hunt Organised by: Carnival Team “Ekats'I Koutsi Katsika”

Tuesday 26th February 2019 OLD Greek Serenades

Thursday 28th February 2019 Tsiknopempti

Thursday 7th March 2019  Bike Ride around town for kids and adults

Friday 8th March 2019  Cretan Traditional Serenades

Saturday 9th March 2019 Children's Parade 2019 & Night Parade 2019 

                              17:00 Beginning at Theotokopoulou Str. junction21:00 Night parade. 22:30 Ending with the live concert at Mikrasiaton Square.

Sunday March 10th, 2019 Great Parade of Teams and Floats14:00 Grand parade. Beginning at Theotokopoulou junction

                             18:30 El. Venizelou Street-Closing Ceremony / Burning of the King of the Carnival, spectacular show with Fireworks / Live Concert /

Shrove Monday         Monday, March 11th, 2019 Municipality of Rethymno