Leicester family enjoys Gran Canaria Carnival despite Sahara sandstorm scare

By Adam Rear

Las Palmas Gran Canaria Carnival 2020 was enjoyed by a visiting Leicester family despite a horrendous sandstorm.

The catastrophic weather meant many holiday-goers, such as De Montfort University student Carmen Goode, had flights cancelled and were packed into hotels with what they say was very little space.

Despite this, Carmen, 19, said: “The Carnival was amazing! The atmosphere around the island was so surreal and I really felt part of their culture while celebrating.

“Funnily enough we wouldn’t have been going to the festival, but our flight got cancelled so we decided that the carnival would take our minds off of the stress and worry of getting home to Leicester.”

The sandstorm raged on over the course of Carmen’s stay on the island

The Carnival is the largest winter event in Las Palmas de Gran Canaria as it takes place during a tourist high season.

The huge line-up of more than 40 acts spans over the course of three weeks to give island-goers a cultural celebration.

The carnival contained multiple acts such as the Drag Queen Gala, singing contests, horseback riding and numerous daytime carnival events.

The carnival even featured a performance by Colombian artist Juanes, who performed on stage at Parque Santa Catalina, the capital of Gran Canaria.

Carmen said: “Whenever I go away on holiday I always like to learn the language and soak in whatever cultural aspects of the country I can.

“Gran Canaria not only had sunny beaches and cheap booze, it had such a variety of cultural backgrounds.

“At the carnival, I especially loved Juanes who sang all of his songs in his native language.

“His performance was a stand-out moment for me as I have always loved the sound of Spanish/Latin-American songs.”

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