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Rethymno Carnival

Rethymno carnival is becoming increasingly popular and has already grown to be the second biggest carnival in Greece. The 2017 carnival, despite the economic crisis, already exceeded all expectations in participations and event happenings.

Every year more than 60.000 people visit the town for the last carnival week and the closing parade. The whole experience is a wonderful celebration of colors, music, joyfulness, and inspiration! Massive parader teams, creative costumes and floats, pounding music and exceptional party spirit.  More parties and masquerades are organized all over the town as the days progress towards the closing carnival weekend. Traditional and modern with music and theatre, street parades and children's events. A time to be carefree with everyone invited to join the party and experience this unique festival experience.

For the next carnival the festivities are expected to be even more memorable and the coordinators of the 2018 Rethymno Carnival festival have already started the preparations with great enthusiasm and the participating teams already met to discus the themes and the organization of the event.


Like most city hotels Casa Maistra Residence is always fully booked around that time predominately by Greek guests who arrive here from every part of the country. Especially for Casa Maistra Residence, booking in advance is very important for that period since there are only 3 Suites located in the heart of the celebrations with the same low season prices, even during the grand parade weekend.



Just in case you find tempting some of the above here are some useful tips for you to plan your carnival trip to Rethymno:

Weekends, and especially the final carnival weekend, is when most people prefer to dress-up while many masked events, dances and children's parties are held at different locations throughout the three week carnival period (“Apokries”).

The second carnival week is “Meat week” (Officially the last week of eating meat until after Lent) and the most important day is the Thursday before Easter week which is usually the beginning of what visitors would consider to be the real Carnival season. In Greek is called “Tsiknopempti” (“Tsikna” is the smell of burning meat and “Pempti” means Thursday). On that day the tradition is to go to a tavern for the meat feast enjoy some wine and listen to live traditional music.

Sunday of the followng week is the last day of “Apokries” when the Grand Carnival Parade is held. On the night before (Saturday) there is also a smaller night parade where thousands of people gather in front of the mayor’s house to parade and dance to the beats of latin music. 

Clean Monday is the next day and marks the end of Apokries and the first day of Lent (“Sarakosti”). It is a holiday and it is also seen as the start of spring time. Fasting starts on that day and it lasts for the next 49 days leading up to Easter. It is customary on that day to go for an excursion to the mountains or the beach to fly a kite and enjoy a picnic or a tavern meal.

So now you have no excuse… Hurry up and join the party of the Rethymno Mardi Gras. Book your suite at Casa Maistra Residence and find yourself in the heart of it all….