Archive image of a carnival day in Marbella. JOSELE
Carnival returns to Malaga province

Carnival returns to Malaga province

Towns around the area celebrate the festivities with a varied programme including competing musical groups and fancy dress contests


Friday, 18 February 2022, 10:38


Carnival festivities are returning to Malaga province. Celebrations will include fancy dress competitions, comparsa and murga groups (satirical choirs who usually dress identically and sing about current affairs), carnival parades and activities for children. Each town has its own celebratory style; some feature all the events on one day, while others opt for a programme which takes place over several weeks. See below how each town is celebrating in 2022.

Malaga city

Carnival festivities began in Malaga city on 1 February, with a competition between different carnival 'comparsa' groups. The final will take place on Friday 25 February in the Cervantes theatre. Tickets to the final and to the other heats are available on the Malaga carnival website.

Some towns pack all events into one day, while others have a programme which last for several weeks

The main events will take place from Friday, 26 February to Sunday, 6 March, mainly at weekends. The opening ceremony will be at 8pm on 26 February in the Plaza de la Constitución. The opening ceremony for the childrens' carnival will be at 12pm on 27 February. At 5.30pm, a parade will start from the Plaza Fray Alfonso and end in the Plaza de la Merced, where the finalists of the carnival comparsa competition will perform. The children's parade will begin at 12pm on Monday, 28 February (Andalucía Day) in the Plaza de la Constitución, followed by workshops for children from 12 - 2pm and 5 - 7pm. Children's carnival groups will perform from 6.30pm.

At 6pm on Friday, 4 March a parade will begin in the Plaza de la Constitución followed by the battle of the flowers and the Drag Queen Gala at 9.30pm. The parade (Desfile de Grupos de Animación y Dioses) will begin at 12pm on Sunday 6 March in the Plaza de la Constitución, followed by a series of performances and an awards ceremony. Carnival will end with the famous Entierro del Boquerón parade. This is a mock funeral procession with pall bearers carrying a large model of an anchovy to the Malagueta beach. The procession begins at 5pm in the Calle Larios.

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Marbella and Estepona

San Pedro Alcántara will be celebrating from Friday, 25 February until Sunday, 28th, beginning with a show and fancy dress competition in the amphitheatre. Throughout the weekend, all activities will take place in the afternoon, from 4pm to 8 pm. On 27 February , there will be performances by various carnival comparsa bands in the amphitheatre. The Carnival Parade will be on Saturday, 26 February from 4pm. The floats will be stationary for the duration of the event, making it easier to enjoy them all.

In Marbella, most events will take place in the San Pedro and Pablo Ráez boulevards. The first event will be an opening ceremony in the Teatro Ciudad de Marbella at 9m on Saturday, 26 February and a performance by the Tino Tovar comparsa group. On 27 February there will be a children's afternoon with the 'Bulevar de la Fantasía' (fantasy boulevard). The traditional 'chorizada' (chorizo tasting) and 'mejillonada' (mussel tasting), organised by local carnival associations, will take place on 28 February from 1pm, all with entertainment from local bands.

The Carnival Carousel will be on Saturday, 5 March from 12pm to 3pm, with performances from various bands. At 6pm, the celebrations will move to the Antonio Gil pavilion in the Represa park, where comparsa bands from Cadiz will perform.

In Estepona, all activities will take place on Saturday, 19 February from 12pm to 6pm. Events will be held outdoors, in the Parque del Calvario. In case of rain, celebrations will be moved to the Padre Manuel cultural centre. Throughout the day, there will be a parade and fancy dress competitions with cash prizes as well as crowning of the reigning carnival nymph and god. There will also be performances from different local groups from La Línea and San Pedro.


In Vélez-Málaga, celebrations will begin at 9pm on Friday, 18 February in the Teatro del Carmen. The traditional carnival parade will take place on Saturday, 19 February, ending with an awards ceremony for the best costume. In Nerja, carnival will be from 24 - 27 February. Torrox will celebrate next month, with parades through the old town on 12 March and on the El Moche seafront promenade on 19 March. Algarrobo town and Mezquitilla will celebrate on 26 and 27 February, from 4.30pm.

Guadalhorce Valley

Alhaurín el Grande's carnival celebrations will take place from 28 February to 6 March. Most events will be held in the Antonio Gala municipal theatre. There will be a musical adaptation of Peter Pan on Sunday, 27 February, and competitions between various carnival comparsa groups throughout the week, with the final on 4 March. At 8pm on 5 March there will be musical performances from several carnival bands in the Cártama cultural hall. The carnival parade will be from 12pm on Sunday, 6 March.


Ronda's celebrations will be from Friday, 25 February to Saturday, 5 March. There will be a series of group performances during the opening ceremony and throughout the week, ending with the parade and traditional burning of a figure or mannequin on 5 March.


Antequera's carnival will be from Friday, 25 February until Sunday, 27 February. The Montenegro family (who have been in business for 50 years supplying fancy dress ands carnival costumes for festivals) will open the celebrations on the Friday at 8.30pm in a marquee in the Plaza de Toros arena. The same venue will host performances from carnival groups on 26 February.

The carnival parade will be on Sunday, 27 February, beginning in the Paseo Real and passing through the town centre, to be followed by a costume competition in the Plaza de Toros.

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