Skip to primary navigation Skip to content Skip to footer
Back to Blog

Behind the Nice Carnival

Negresco Hotel

As you may already know, the Nice Carnival is one of the world’s major carnival events, alongside the Brazilian and the Venetian one. It is held annually in February in Nice on the French Riviera and lasts two weeks.

The carnival of Nice is also one of the biggest carnivals of France and a major event of the winter period in Nice. People gather from all over the country, but also from all around the world. Around a million visitors to see this spectacular parade. You can even taste some traditional dishes of Nice, like the Socca (made of chickpea) or the Pissaladière (made of anchovies).

The parades take place day and night in the center of the city, and even “flower battles” occur near the Promenade des Anglais. If you never head of the “flower battles” of the Nice carnival, it’s an old tradition: it was initially simple exchanges of flowers, but over time it became a real show with flowers thrown from a float to the crowd.

However, the Nice Carnival isn’t merely an entertaining event. Indeed, the different floats are often carriers of messages. Some are denouncing global warming, and others are accusing current generations who are dependent upon new technologies. Political satire is also present, and the media and, more generally, the tv brainwashing is mostly criticized.

Apart from being a special moment where young and old dress up to have fun together, the carnival on the French Riviera is a huge event, thanks to which the city attracts people from around the world and earns money. The economic benefits are estimated at 30 million euros. This year the event gathered almost 300 000 people, including nearly 35 000 foreigners!

Concerning the ticket prices, the entrance is 5 to 12€ (free for children under six years old), and the grandstand tickets cost about 21-26€. Come as early as you can, because you’ll have to wait for up to 2 hours otherwise! Of course, you can get a special pass if you’re a journalist or a well-connected person.

This year we have had a carnival under the snow, who knows what awaits us next year!

Check out our Private Half-Day tour of Nice City if you want to discover the best of Nice.