Your Guide to Bahamas Carnival – Carnival in Paradise

Bahamas Carnival is a wild, vibrant and colourful celebration that embraces local Bahamian culture and heritage.

Bahamas Carnival is currently postponed due to COVID-19!

April 30th 2020

May 3rd  2020

Days to start

What is the Bahamas Carnival?

bahamas carnival

The Bahamas Carnival is a festive Caribbean Carnival that takes place in the month of May in the Bahamas. It is a lively and fun experience that is rich with local culture. It has everything you would expect from a traditional Caribbean Carnival but with lots of Bahamian flavor.

The carnival is popular with locals and visitors from all over the world, who descend to Bahamas to get immersed in all things Bahamas – the lifestyle, music, food, dance, fashion and arts. This summer carnival celebration is one of the most anticipated events of the whole year!

Carnival in the Bahamas is nothing but good vibes and sees everyone in high spirits!. The Bahamas Carnival features a big catalogue of events that offer something for everyone’s needs. If you want to, you can join in the madness and take part in the Road Parade and then dance the nights away at all the fetes then you can attend.

Or if you prefer, you can just sit back and be a spectator, watching all the carnival magic and soaking up the atmosphere. You don’t need to be in the parade, you will still have an awesome time at the parade from the sidelines. Plus there is a huge array of cultural activities at the Bahamas Carnival that you can enjoy.

When is the Bahamas Carnival?

Bahamas Carnival is currently postponed due to COVID-19!

The Bahamas is a four-day Caribbean celebration that will run from April 30th 2020 until 3 May 2020.

Where is the Bahamas Carnival held?

bahamas carnival

The Bahamas Carnival celebrations today occur only on the Islands of the Bahamas. The Bahamas is a country that is located in the northwestern West Indies. It is located north of Cuba and sits about  80 km (50 mi) south-east of the Florida Coast.

Where to experience the Bahamas Carnival? The highlight of the Bahamas Carnival is the Road Fever. The Bahamas Carnival will occur in the vicinity of Clifford Park, The Western Esplanade, and Arawak Cay.

What is the difference between The Bahamas Carnival and Junkanoo?

bahamas carnival

The Bahamas Carnival and Junkanoo are two completely different events. Junkanoo is the main cultural event of the island and takes place between Boxing Day (the day after Christmas) 26th of December and the 1st of January.

The Bahamas Carnival is more similar to the other Caribbean Carnival’s like seen in the region with a mas band parade, fetes, food vendors, pumping soca music and lots of rum. 

Junkanoo is the absolute heart and soul of Bahamian culture. In fact Junkanoo is the only part of Bahamian society that is uniquely Bahamian. You can read all about Junkanoo Carnival here.

There is also a Junkanoo Summer Carnival that is held during the months of June and July over the weekend that was introduced due to its increasing popularity.

How do they celebrate the Bahamas Carnival

bahamas carnival

Bahamas Carnival has so many activities for everyone to enjoy, that are uniquely Bahamian. The main attractions of the Bahamas Carnival are of course the colorful street parades and witnessing the incredible costumes, dances and musicians.

Other highlights of the Bahamas Carnival include the diverse amount of concerts and live music shows. Lots of different fetes and private parties are thrown during carnival. You can taste the mouth-watering local cuisine.  Or browse some visual arts or shop for some of the local art and handmade crafts.

Bahamas Carnival Mas Bands & Costumes

Here’s a list of the 2020 Bahamas Carnival Mas Bands and their social handles to check out their costumes and see if you want to join their band.

Budget for Bahamas Carnival

How much does the Bahamas Carnival cost?

The local currency is essentially equal with the $US, so 1BSD = 1USD.

  • Airfare: depends on where you fly from but around $250-$500 from most major US cities
  • Hotels: average cost $200 a night (can be cheaper and can be more expensive)
  • Car Rental: $250-$350 depending on days
  • Costumes Backline: $300 – $450
  • Costumes Frontline: $450-$600
  • Costumes Men: $300
  • Fetes: $5 – $60; budget about $300 for entire carnival
  • Spending Money: food, gas, souvenirs, $300-$500

TOTAL: minimum budget = $1500 – $2000 pp

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Where to purchase tickets for the Bahamas Carnival?

Head over to https://bahamascarnival.com where you can purchase tickets for several carnival events.

How to get to the Bahamas?

The best way to get to the Bahamas is to fly. The airport is connected to many international airports. You can also arrive by boat from another island or the USA. Once you are on the island it is very easy to take a taxi around. To get a quote for a flight click here.

Where to stay in the Bahamas?

bahamas carnival

There are hundreds of options for accommodations. From luxurious resorts and hotels, to guesthouses and private Airbnb rentals there is something for all budgets and tastes. Most tourists stay in the Paradise Island area of Nassau, and just take a taxi to the carnival parade.

The best areas to stay in terms of the proximity to the Bahamas Carnival are downtown Nassau as most of the action takes place in and there are plenty of hotels and guest houses in this area if you want to be close to the action. Other great areas include Cable Beach Strip Arawak Cay Area (St. Albans, Botanical Gardens), West Bay Street, Paradise Island and SandyPort.

Due to high demand during the Bahamas Carnival we strongly recommended booking your accommodation well in advance! Check out some great accommodation deals here.

What to do and see in the Bahamas?

bahamas carnival

The Bahamas has over 700 islands and cays! A vacation in the Bahamas can involve swimming in some of the most beautiful white sand beaches in the world. Or relaxing in a beach chair with a tropical drink. If you are more adventurous there are plenty of adrenaline-inducing activities. Or you can indulge in some underwater exploration or  water sports.

The city of Nassau has many historic sites with lots of great restaurants, shops and bars. The island also has some large resorts as well as casinos. There are so many sparsely populated islands if you want to get away from it all and sit on untouched beaches.

For more information about tours, things to do, sightseeing tours, day trips and more click here.

Before you go!

We can’t stress enough the importance of travel insurance being protected on your travels is an irreplaceable peace of mind. Don’t learn the hard way about the importance of travel insurance. Never travel without coverage.

Get a quote through our recommended insurance provider, World Nomads.

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