Carnevale in Cosenza

Carnevale, also known as Carnival or Mardi Gras, is celebrated in so many parts of the world like Rio De Janeiro, New Orleans, Notting Hill, Venice and, well, even Cosenza.

Corso Mazzini is the place to be if you want to partake in the festivities linked to Carnevale.  There have been stands set up for at least two weeks selling the most essential things you’ll need – confetti and silly string.

Every evening kids dressed up in costumes weave through the crowds of people on the pedestrian area with plastic bags full of multi-coloured pieces of paper known as “coriandoli”.  You can’t help but smile as you watch them eagerly try to shower their friends and family with these colourful flecks.

Carnevale isn’t just for children, there is entertainment for everyone.  Along the Corso, you find street performers doing tricks for an attentive crowd. But, you won’t find a float parade, instead Corso Mazzini becomes a runway with a parade of people dressed in intricate costumes, stopping to take photos with spectators.  This year, the parade was organized for Martedi Grasso (Fat Tuesday) and unfortunately I was in lessons and wasn’t able to catch the “sfliata” but I’ve got some photos from last year that give a pretty good idea of what took place.

This year’s carnival celebrations also included a folk group from Civita, a small town in Cosenza known for it’s deeply rooted culture and traditions brought over by Albanian refugees in the 15th century. On Sunday, this group of young men and woman, dressed in traditional costumes, made their way along Corso Mazzini. They didn’t get very far before being stopped by people on the street asking questions and taking photos. At certain points along the pedestrian area, they performed a traditional song and dance instantly capturing the attention of passerbys.


The street sweepers can be heard as we consume the last of our chiacchiere and bid addio to another Carnival season.

Did you celebrate Carnevale this year? Have you experienced Carnevale in the past? Share your experiences below, I’d love to hear from you!



  1. Image Earth Travel

    April 30, 2017 at 6:50 pm

    Shame I missed this in Cosenza…maybe next year.
    Great post, beautiful costumes and definitely as stunning as the ones in Venice!

  2. karenincalabria

    February 28, 2017 at 6:38 pm

    Beautiful, elaborate costumes!

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