According to tradition, most of the carnival events, especially on the coast, begins on St. Anthony's day, January 17, and lasts until Ash Wednesday, February 26, when the carnival doll is ritually burned announcing the ending of winter period and welcoming spring. . And the most famous of all Croatian carnivals is the Rijeka Carnival which is one of the 500 best European events. The Rijeka Carnival is the TOP event of Croatian tourism, which is also promoted in the campaigns of the Croatian National Tourist Board. Rijeka Carnival is also the TOP event of Rijeka's tourism and cultural tourism that our fellow citizens recognize as such. But this year it will be a special event as at the same time time the grand opening of Rijeka - the European Capital of Culture - will take place. On February 1, 2020, the Port of Diversity will also have its official start in the Port of Rijeka, which will for this occasion become an area of a different face and character.
37th International Rijeka Carnival can start with the slogan "Be what you want!" completed with fun and dance.
On the first day of the Rijeka Carnival, as an introductory event to all the carnival events, there will be a ceremonial handover of the city keys to the carnival and the competition for the Queen of Rijeka Carnival. The carnival program will then be followed by numerous carnival parties and various masquerade events, such as the Masquerade Paris – Bakar Rally, snowboarding in the center of the city, the Humanitarian Masquerade Ball, Carnival Laugh Days and other events.
The Children's Carnival parade was announced on February 8, and on the same date at the ExportDelta Carnival Concert Events opens Jole, then on February 14, Prljavo kazalište, February 15, the Carnival party will take place, the Koktels will perform on February 21, the Vigor group will perform on February 22, and the February 23 will be reserved for local concerts.
The grand finale of the Rijeka Carnival - International Carnival parade, featuring Croatian and foreign traditional and urban carnival groups with thousands of masks and numerous unusual vehicles will take place on February 23. Due to the fact that Rijeka is the European Capital of Culture at the same time when Carnival, beside the friend cities from Germany, Italy, Japan, there are the cities as Kaunas, Veszprem, Matera, Novi Sad, Esch-sur-Alzette and Galway, respectively cities that have or will carry the ECOC title and for the first time parade from New Orleans, Korea India, Lithuania, China will be present at the Rijeka Carnival Parade.