It's back from January 2024! The Dunkirk Carnival is an emblematic festival in the north of France. It's a unique event, eagerly awaited by Dunkirkers themselves and by all other enthusiasts. Just 1 hour from Lille, you can enjoy all the folklore of the Dunkirk carnival. Come and vibrate to the rhythm of the drums and share this unforgettable experience with the carnival-goers!
At Evancy, our aim is to help you make the most of the Dunkirk carnival by giving you the chance to stay right next door. Our residences are located in Bray-Dunes, 15 minutes from the heart of the carnival - they'll give you a moment of peace and quiet before plunging into the Dunkirk crowds. There are free shuttle buses from the town of Bray-Dunes to the carnival bands and balls. So there's no excuse for not taking part this year.
The precise timetable for Carnaval de Dunkerque 2024 will be unveiled shortly, it generally takes into account the dates of Mardis Gras and Easter. In any case, the programme will include several major events such as the Trois Joyeuses, which represent the high point of the festivities. Here are the main balls on the Dunkerque Carnival 2024 agenda:
Bal des joyeux Beultes (Bray-Dunes)
Bal des Ckouckenards (Leffrinckoucke)
Bal du Chat Noir (Kursaal hall, Dunkirk)
Bal des Kakernesches (Dunkirk Kursaal)
Bal des Corsaires (Dunkerque Kursaal)
Nuit de l'Oncle Cô (Dunkerque Kursaal)
Bande de Dunkerque (1st of the 3 joyeuses)
Bal des Acharnés (Dunkerque Kursaal)
Bande de la Citadelle (2nd of the 3 joyeuses)
Bande de Rosendael (3rd of the 3 merrymakers)
Bal des Gigolos et des Gigolettes (Dunkerque Kursaal)
Bal de la Violette (Dunkirk Kursaal).
Bal du Sporting (Kursaal de Dunkerque),
Bal des Optimistes (Leffrinckoucke).
Bal du Printemps (Dunkerque Kursaal).
The Dunkirk carnival is a very old tradition, dating back to the early 17th century. Before the sailors left for several months of fishing, risking never being able to return, their bosses, the shipowners, organised a big party.
Bands and balls sound familiar? The Bandes are the vibrant heart of Carnival: they bring together the carnival-goers in disguise who parade through the streets to the sound of music and drums. As for the Bals, these are costume parties where participants dance and sing the night away. Children's balls are also held throughout the carnival, to the delight of young and old alike.
Among the many carnival traditions, the herring throw is undoubtedly the most emblematic. Originally, fishermen offered herrings to the crowd as a sign of generosity. Today, this custom continues, with plastic herrings thrown from the balcony of the Hôtel de Ville.