Carnaval in Puerto Escondido: Get a costume, get crazy, be happy and dance in the streets. After all, Carnaval only comes once a year and anything goes! In 2014 the event begins February 28 and runs till March 2. Popular Mexican guitarist Paco Rentería, a hit at last year’s event, will return this year.
Carnival, or Carnaval, as it is called in Latin America, comes from the Latin meaning “farewell to the flesh.” It refers to the 40 days of Lent, when Christians were forbidden to eat meat, had to wear somber clothing and refrain from merriment.
So the days preceding Lent were the last opportunity to enjoy the pleasures of the flesh and Carnaval evolved as a period of sanctioned excess, of carefree abandon and indulgence in which wild behavior was accepted as a necessary outlet.
In Puerto Escondido Carnaval is normally celebrated with parades and a cultural program in the square at the Agencia Municipal, where the king and queen of Carnaval are crowned and the ritual burning of bad humor takes place.