A traditional pre-Lenten Caribbean carnival that is friendly, accessible to visitors and uncommercialised. It is a moveable feast determined by the timing of Lent and in 2011 the main event falls between March 7th and 8th. Mas Dominik is a mixture of African masquerade and French carnival traditions. Many of the costume designs are traditional such as the Sensay where the masquerader is completely hidden by a costume of raffia, rope or strips of material topped by a mask and cow horns. The opening of carnival or Jouvert begins at dawn on the first day. Individuals take to the streets in home made costumes or night clothes banging drums or saucepans, anyone can join in and the streets are very eerie at dawn, populated by shadowy figures and the sound of drums. This is followed by the joyous celebrations of the school bands and other traditional masqueraders. The climax on Carnival Tuesday features the costume bands who make several laps of the route. There is no space in the narrow streets for elaborate creations or large structures but this means the carnival action is close, neither locals or visitors can remain spectators for long and will find themselves jumping up behind a band or a truck that plays the current carnival tunes.
The main carnival events take place in and around the capital city Roseau, and it is compact enough that you could not possibly miss the carnival. You need to stay in or around the capital to make the most of the events as public transport is virtually non existent after dark and associated events such as calypso competitions take place late into the night.
Google map: bit.ly/e4cdUX
Send your feedback or queries to firstname.lastname@example.org