How to tell you’ve had a good time at Carnival | Tempio Pausania, Sardinia, Italy

How do you define a good time? Is it with music or dance? Is singing in your repertoire? What if we combine all those ingredients and throw a six-day festival in honour of a dead King?

The party starts here:

The festival parade of masks and floats generally occurs before Lent. People of all ages and walks of life come out to celebrate the King of Carnival – King George (or Giorgio if you’re in Italy). Many of the ancient traditions have disappeared over the centuries, but one thing clearly stays the same –  Carnevale Tempiese, The Carnival of Tempio Pausania.

Tempio Pausania is in the Gallura region of northern Sardinia and is the administrative capital (along with Olbia) making the province of Olbia-Tempio.

The 14,000 inhabitants know how to throw an impressive Carnival and have shown up by the thousands to pay homage (and party) in honour of the King.

In just a few weeks time people from all over Europe will take part in dance, costume and play, at one of Sardinia’s biggest celebrations, after brushing out the winter cobwebs and hailing in the new sun shine.

The legend of King Giorgio takes us back to pre-Roman times, when Giorgio was sacrificed to fertilize the earth. Today however, King Giorgio is a huge display of cast iron, wood and paper mache. He sits on an embellished throne and is paraded throughout the town’s city center.

For six days he is praised, honoured and bestowed upon. On the last day when the masses are drawing to a climax, King Giorgio is burned in the public square. Thus repeating the ancient rite of fire that heralds the end of winter and the arrival of spring.

Colourful floats and disco pumping music is the modernized version of events which transpired over 2000 years ago.

Groups from all over Europe come to compete in the following categories: dance, baton, best costume, and best float.

Baton Twirlers from Bulgaria


Flag Throwers from Italy

Since the 18th century Carnival has been a major event all over the world, involving the entire population in singing, dancing, eating and money spending. And also politics. It’s synonymous with Italy’s carnival’s, maybe the politicians are just easy targets!

Carnival is all about having a good time (Bunga, Bunga) and expressing ones opinions and ideals about the world around them. Who’s to judge? And who really cares? However, as for the following group, they were asked to disperse and remove themselves from the parade. We had arrived early to grab a good spot, so I was able to snap this photo at the start of the parade.

(Is there anyone out there that can explain this group’s political point to me? I’m having difficulty. Something about blackmail employment being anal? And 100 sheep are better than … what? What is 1 da Le*on?)

Besides these guys causing a bit of trouble Carnevale Tempiese 2011 went off without a hitch. All people were happy and joyous as the confetti rained down and the music pumped its base.

I know Sardinia has its host of wild animals roaming these rugged hills so I was surprised to find this big guy just hanging around, I think he needed medical attention and I’m not trained in that type of monkey business.

How do you know when you’ve had a good time at the Carnival of Tempio Pausania, Sardinia, Italy?

When the fat ladies sing …

and when …

the …

Cops …

get …


Did you have a good time at Carnival? Where in the world did you participate?

For more information about the Carnival of Tempio Pausania, Sardinia, Italy please visit the following website: Carnevale di Tempio Pausania 2012

8 thoughts on “How to tell you’ve had a good time at Carnival | Tempio Pausania, Sardinia, Italy

  1. It’s the Carnival season likewise here in the Philippines…actually we have all sorts of Carnival and Fiestas all through the year but the better ones are lined up during the first and second quarter of the year…before Summer comes and even after! (^_^)

  2. YAY!!! There will be more pictures from this years shindig soon!!!!! Hazing a police car? How grand is that!!!

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