The Carnival holiday in Andorra comes each year in February or March, as in many other significantly Roman Catholic countries. The date varies, but it always immediately precedes Ash Wednesday, which is the first day of a 40-day Lenten fast leading up to Easter.
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Andorra has become one of the most popular vacation spots for Carnival events in recent years. Just before the Lent fast starts, everyone indulges in excessive fun, food, and excitement.
The two main centres of Carnival fun in Andorra are towns of Andorra la Vella and Escaldes Engordany. Large dance groups parade through their streets on the Saturday before Ash Wednesday. Colourful floats and costumes, lively music, confetti in the air, and satirical skits are all involved. The parades pass by the shopping districts, and shoppers stop to watch open-air plays dubbed such things as “The Dance of the Bear” and “The Smugglers Trial”.
Carnival Monday is the official holiday in Andorra, but it is not at all the only day on which celebrations occur. Most shops and eateries are still open on Monday, in fact, to take advantage of the floods of tourists and local celebrants.