Since 1965, on the west of London, in the famous Notting Hill neighbourhood, the second largest carnival in the world after Rio de Janeiro is celebrated. What began as a small street festival of Caribbean immigrants in London, has become one of the most popular festivals in the country.
This year it will be held on 28 and August 29 from 9 am to 7 pm, despite the recent rioting in the city, local authorities are still planning special security measures that will be up due to the large influx of people, that on other occasions has reached one million people.
Over 30 km, participants dressed in colorful and ostentatious clothes, dance Latin rhythms accompanied by large steel bands, who will participate in a fun contest on the first day of the festival, the day dedicated to families and youth, as there will be concerts and activities dedicated to the family. On Bank Holiday Monday, a large number of parade floats will participate and hundreds of Caribbean food stalls will be placed on the streets of Notting Hill.
The parades begin on the Great Western Road, Chepstow Road until you reach to continue along Westbourne Grove and end in Ladbroke Grove.
Dates: Sunday 28 to Monday August 29, 2011.
Times: Both days from 9 am to 7 pm.
Getting there: The best option is the public transport, either bus or metro. The nearest stations as Ladbroke Grove and Latimer Road are closed to the public during the celebration of Carnival, so it will be necessary to choose other stations as Westbourne Park or Bayswater.
Official Website of the event: http://www.thenottinghillcarnival.com
Price: The carnival is organized by the government and have no charge.
Where to stay
As in any place, where there is big event, it is necessary to book in advance, as availability can be greatly reduced. Hotels in London are spread throughout the city, so it is advisable to choose areas with good communication as Paddington where you can find good accommodation such as Cardiff Hotel or Hyde Park Court Hotel. If you do not mind giving up a central location and prefer cheap hostels, the hostel Smart Russell Square or the New Cross Inn, may be good options for you.
Where to eat
London is characterized by a huge variety of restaurants of every type and budget, but due to the Notting Hill Carnival hundreds of exotic Caribbean food stalls will be installed where you can sample specialties like Jamaican chicken, fried plantains or punch rum for a very cheap price.