Mardi Gras is a celebration that I always heard about growing up, but didn’t know much about since in my country it’s not a thing. So I grew up wondering what it was, I knew it was purple and green-themed, and that people celebrated. But that’s it.
Now, this all changed when I visited New Orleans for the first time and everyone kept saying “but you have to come visit on Mardi Gras” and proceeded to explain to me what it was. Now it’s all I want to do in life. Visit New Orleans again during the Mardi Gras. So I’m going to tell you why Mardi Gras is the most fun as a person who has never celebrated it.
1. One month-long party
My first reason why Mardi Gras is so much fun is that it’s a month-long celebration. The official day this year is the 25th of February, but they take the excuse to celebrate the rest of the month. Being from the Caribbean, partying is not uncommon to me. And doing it for a whole month sounds like the most exciting.
Spending only one night in the French Quarter in New Orleans was enough to let me know that they also know how to party. And it’s a great excuse for everyone around the world to start doing it.
Some of the traditions this holiday holds are carnivals, parades, and masks. And as if it wasn’t enough, there’s also food involved. In New Orleans they know how to season and cook, it’s one of the finest cuisines. But in Mardi Gras, they make ‘king cakes’ which, I haven’t tried, but just by the pictures, I need one right now.
It’s pretty common in New Orleans listening to live music on the street but during Mardi Gras, you get the experience to see it all around all the time. It must be one of the most awesome and bizarre experiences ever. And I may be biased, but I just love just picturing it.
2. Get to see floats
Another one of the traditions in Mardi Gras, which deserves a whole category in this list, is the floats. People pour their heart and soul in these carnivals, so each year they come together and create this giant floats. Just picture the Disney parade but way more fun (and way more loud).
The themes vary, from satirical, to beautiful scenarios. In what they all coincide, is in trying to make the most impressive piece of art, which also happens to move around.
You may also know about the infamous bead collars. They throw them from the floats, you catch them and at the end of the night, whoever has the most, gets to decide where to eat. I totally made that up, but I mean… it’s a great idea.
3. Who doesn’t love a good carnival
Carnivals around the world are highly popular because of the colors, music and just the overall environment. There are highly know carnivals outside of the US. If it’s either the Rio Carnival in Brazil or the Venice Carnival in Italy, carnivals make people come together. And the carnival in New Orleans is no exception.
Having such a widely known celebration around the world its an excuse enough to enjoy Mardi Gras at its best. Imagine meeting someone from Barbados who has never been to or celebrated the carnival.
You get to see live music, get to know people from around the world, dance, eat, party and enjoy a good environment. Can it get any better than that? Actually, it does…
If none of the reasons mentioned before convinced you of why Mardi Gras is, in fact, the most fun holiday, I’m sure this one will. It’s like Halloween on steroids.
Yes, Halloween is one of the most awesome holidays and celebrations of the year. But imagine all the dress-up combined with a one-month long party.
In Mardi Gras, people get really creative and dress up in costumes, makeup, masks. It’s actually really interesting seeing people take their time to craft and create these costumes and seeing it come to life before your eyes. The dedication and effort people put into this celebration its amazing. Just watching the videos it makes you really wanna be there.
5. Excuse to visit NOLA
So besides everything I’ve said, does it get any better? Oh yes, it once again does. Just to top everything else, this holiday it’s in New Orleans. And having visited New Orleans, I can say is one of the most amazing places I’ve been to in the US.
The culture, the people, the food. Visiting for Mardi Gras gives you a great excuse to get to know New Orleans and the beauty it holds.
You can start by walking through the French Quarter, which you’ll get to know pretty well if you’re visiting for Mardi Gras. Also, the food and music you’ll find on the street are top-notch. And to end your trip on a high note, eating beignets from Cafe Du Monde will leave you wanting to go back soon.
Culturally, New Orleans has a lot to offer and you really shouldn’t pass the opportunity to get to know it. Walking around and getting around the city and parks makes you really appreciate it.
It’s a great way to start the year on the right foot. I know sometimes life may get busy and tiring, but finding reasons to celebrate, even if you think there aren’t, sometimes makes a huge difference.
Just looking for an excuse to seeing your friends, or hanging around with your family, may seem like a small thing, but sometimes has a huge impact on our whole attitude. Being grateful that we have reasons to celebrate, even the small things.