The Barranquilla Carnival is one of Colombia’s most high profile events but it lacks sufficient resources for tourists, and could be dangerous for foreign visitors, according to Colombian publication El Heraldo.
The event, held annually in the city of Barranquilla on Colombia’s Caribbean coast, was named by UNESCO as one of the “Masterpieces of Oral and Intangible Heritage of Humanity.”
Every year Barranquilla’s streets are filled with a kaleidoscope of costumes, parades, dancers and music, attracting hundreds of thousands of revelers.
El Heraldo raised concerns that certain zones in the city can be dangerous for tourists, especially non-Spanish speakers, during Carnival. The publication reports that local shopkeepers cite El Paseo Bolivar as the most dangerous area for foreigners.
El Heraldo also notes that the Carnival’s official website only provides information in Spanish and that obtaining seats to view parades is difficult for non Spanish speaking foreigners because they are only advertised via local radio and other press. Other free events, such as exhibitions are also only promoted in Spanish.
Zandra Vasquez director of the Cayena Cultural Center told El Heraldo that “the resources for non Spanish speaking tourists are never going to be sufficient. Every year Carnival becomes more international. It is necessary to create an alliance between cultural and touristic institutions to strengthen knowledge of Carnival for the foreign public”.
Carnival kicks off in Barranquilla this Saturday 13th February. Put on your party pants and get ready to rumba!