Montevideo Carnival 2024 dates

Hot off the press! The world's longest carnival is in Montevideo Uruguay and we've got the dates.
By Karen A Higgs
Montevideo Carnival
Last updated on January 9, 2024
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Montevideo carnival is the world’s longest carnival starting January thru early March. We’ve got the links you need in English about where to go and what to see.

LATEST: Saturday 10 February Llamadas parade moved to Sunday 11 due to weather forecast

Carnival in Uruguay is uniquely different to anywhere else in the world. And what’s really special for a visitor is that it is still an event primarily for the locals. Here are Montevideo carnival 2024 dates:

Carnival tablados

Carnival tablados are on across the city from late January for the next 40 nights (longer if there’s rain). Tablados are nightly shows featuring four to seven carnival groups. So you can expect to be able to attend a tablado in Montevideo until early March. Some tablado line-ups are better than others. Get The Guru’Guay Guide to Montevideo to learn why.

Recommended tablados

1. El Velodromo Love their great line-ups and that they offer shows every night of the week. Details here (in Spanish)

2. Museo de Carnaval In the Old City, the only venue with cover in case of rain. Open Fridays and Saturdays only. Details here (in Spanish)

The video explains how to buy tickets at a tablado

Montevideo Carnival parades 2024 dates

The Inaugural Carnival Parade (Desfile inaugural)
Thursday 25 January eve
Av. 18 de Julio (main street), from Plaza Independencia to Plaza Cagancha

Samba Schools Parade (Desfile de escuelas de samba)
Friday 26 January
Av. 18 de Julio (main street), from Andes to Paraguay

Las Llamadas, the Llamadas Parade
Friday 9 and Saturday 10 February
LATEST: Saturday 10 parade moved to Sunday 11 due to weather forecast
Traditional route: Isla de Flores street, from Zelmar Michelini to Minas

Montevideo carnival parade

Essential reading on Carnival in Uruguay

Source for dates: DAECPU

Cover photo by Jimmy Baikovicius

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49 Responses

  1. Hey Karen,
    Thx for your work here. I would like to know about what time the desfiles/parades normally start.
    We have little children and i couldn t get this information anywhere. Would be good to know.

  2. Hallo 🙂 Ich werde Mitte Februar nach Uruguay kommen.
    Bis wann geht denn der Carneval dieses Jahr? Und welche Region ist in Montevideo am sichersten und besten um eine Übernachtung zu buchen?
    Liebe Grüße Elli

    1. Hallo, Elvira. Hier ist der Artikel auf Deutsch, damit du die wichtigsten Karnevalsdaten in deiner Sprache sehen kannst. Was die Unterkunft angeht, empfehlen wir dir, nicht weiter als Carrasco zu wohnen, da die meisten Veranstaltungen in der Nähe des Zentrums stattfinden. Viele Grüße

  3. Hola Karen, tenemos el libro guía de GURUGUAY, pero me gustaria saber como alquilar un balcón para disfrutar el desfile de las llamadas por la calle Isla de Flores……pensamos estar en la primer semana de Feb. 2024.
    Gracias,
    Mario

    1. Lamento que la persona que conozco ya alquiló su balcon. Tal vez acá alguien postea disponibilidad. Saludos! — Karen

  4. Hi, I went to a parade in Piriapolis which was great in February. Do all the smaller towns also have scheduled parades during Carnaval? If so where are those dates posted?

    1. Hi Aida, I’m afraid I’ve never seen a listing of when the local carnivals are on, nor do they seem to be announced more than locally or a few days/weeks in advance. Sorry not to be of more help — Karen

      1. Buongiorno Karen stiamo pianificando un viaggio a Montevideo a marzo 2024 sai se il 1 marzo ci sono manifestazioni legate al Carnevale? Grazie mille Gianmarco

        1. Hi Gianmarco, Carnival runs for 40 nights from the Inaugural Parade. If there are rain-checks then carnival may still be on by March 1. Hope this helps! — Karen

          1. Hi Karen, when I check the schedule on Velodrome, it’s only listed for a few days in January. When will the full schedule be released? Can we assume that they will have some sort of event every night until early March? Thanks!

      2. Thanks Karen, changed dates and will be there for las Llamadas 2024!! If I see other parades I will let you know!
        Saludos!

    2. They are posted in the local Intendencia’s calendar a month or two before.
      Piriopolis, for instance, is in Maldonado Intendencia so search “Intendencia Maldonado, UY” and then their Calendar of Events in January and the Desfiles etc for the local Carnaval events will (evenually) be posted.

  5. Hello Karen, in your book that I purchased on Amazon yesterday you reference a Christine Dunlin for certain tours. I wanted to reach out to her for possible private balcony seating for the Llamadas parade on the 2/10/24? Any help would be greatly appreciated. Thanks!

    1. Hi Russ, I’m afraid Christine Dulin no longer lives in Uruguay. If you contact me in mid January, I can put you in contact with someone who can help you — best, Karen

  6. I’d like to take my kids to Uruguay given I/we have Uruguayan heritage. Can you tell me, does the Carnaval de nińos still exist? If so, do you know the dates? I went when I was little but don’t know the exact name of it or if it still exists.

  7. Hola,
    i was reading that carneval in Uruguay starts in january and ends in march.
    i am planning to arrive in Montevideo on 19/02/24, would i be late for any carneval parties? would you recomend to arrive earlier?
    I would love to see las Noches de las Llamadas.
    thank you,
    Marco

    1. Hey Marco, I love the tablados but the Llamadas are really the best parade. If you can make it, do try to come earlier! — Karen

  8. Buenas, una pregunta.
    Se que las Noches de las Llamadas (que este año seran el 9/10 de Febrero) no hay Tablados en el Teatro de Verano (no sabria si los Tablados de barrio si hay), los Tablados empiezan nuevamente el 11 de febrero?.

    Desde ya muchas gracias.

    1. You have to go to a venue or a parade to experience it. It’s not crazy like Brazil. Uruguay is never crazy 😉 — Karen

  9. Hi, we’re planning to spend a couple days in Montevideo in January 2024. I’m curious if it’s worth extending out dates to attend the Inaugural parade? We would have to leave the Friday morning in order to catch our flight. Thank you.

  10. Do you know the dates of the carnival for 2024. We are planning to go to Montevideo on the 18th January 2024.

    1. Hi David, the dates are not out yet. We’ll publish them when we have them. According to my notes, Carnival starts with the Inaugural Parade which takes place on the penultimate Thursday of January—the 25th in 2024. Hope that helps, Karen

    2. Hi David, the 2024 dates have just been announced and the article updated accordingly. cheers — karen

      1. Thank you for the update. We have changed our travel plans so we are in Montevideo on the 25th and 26th January for the parade. Is there anywhere in particular you would suggest to watch the parade. Happy to pay for tickets etc if we get a good position.
        Thanks
        David

        1. Hi David, that’s great news. You buy tickets for the Inaugural carnival parade from Abitab stores. I’ll publish here when tickets are available for purchase (don’t expect it to be many weeks in advance) and a URL. Feel free to send me a reminder here! — Karen

  11. We arrive in Montevideo on Feb 10th in the evening after 5pm, for the weekend. How can we get tickets for the Llamades Parade?

      1. Hi Karen,
        We’re planning a trip to Uruguay and I wanted to know if mid March could be a good period weather wise. Is it too cold to swim? We wanted to avoid the crowds and the carnival.
        Thanks a lot
        Manoela

      2. Bought both of your books and was looking forward to the llamadas parades. Tried to buy tickets online but could not. You said they don’t sell out until a day or two before. That was not the case. We tried to buy them upon arrival on the 2nd, but were told none were available. Are there resale vendors or any other options?

        1. Hi Jane, so sorry to hear that. There must be a lot of demand this year, especially if they have sold out a week before.

          There was a discussion in our Discover Uruguay by Guru’Guay Facebook group and several suggestions which I will share here though I do not endorse them personally. My recommendation would be to go and see a few tablados instead. They are also a great cultural experience. Here’s how to buy tickets for the Velodrome tablado.

          1. “On MercadoLibre there are people who host parties on their balconies that overlook the parade. You can type in “llamadas azotea 2023.” I was recently in the same boat and a few places still have space for Saturday.”

          2. “I’ve never purchased tickets to see the llamadas. I don’t actually know anyone who has purchased tickets to go see it. Just get over there, walk around the many streets (crowded!!!) and find a nice spot to see from. You’ll want to get off isla de flores to change intersections and go to a parallel street to change blocks, because of the crowd on the actual street. Change spots a few times cause you never know if you might find an amazing spot to watch from. I’ve also been up to some people’s balcony (acquaintance of a friend), but it wasn’t all that good, I preferred front line action to see them go by and feel the drums up close.”

          Hope this helps and so sorry you weren’t able to get tickets. — Karen

  12. Oooh, can’t you stay for the Llamadas on the 10th?? Otherwise go to a carnival tablado — the one at the Museo de Carnaval is a good bet as it is on regardless of the weather — Karen

  13. Perfect timing! I’ll be arriving in January for 7s rugby in Punta Del Este, then starting the rugby 15s season in Montevideo in February con Alejandro y Old Christians Club!

  14. Hi Karen.
    We are arriving to Uruguay on 1st March – first to Colonia and then heading to Montevideo. Will the Carnival be over by then, or do we still have a chance? Thanks in advance, Anna

    1. Hi Anna, I’m responding on Karen’s behalf because she’s on leave. Almost everything happens in February, but I think you’ll still have a chance to find ‘tablados’ and get a taste of murga. Cheers!

  15. Hi there,

    For a long time carnival fan but first time visitor to Uruguay which of these would you recommend? I twould be good to go to all but then we woulsd see nothing else in uruguay!

    Thanks

    Justyn

    1. Hello Michael, how are you doing? The latest news I could find is on the local government website. They say: Neighbourhood processions will be cancelled and the activity will focus on one parade per municipality. The first one will be, if conditions permit, on February 12th in San Carlos and in Maldonado on February 28th. The rest are being confirmed, but tentatively the 19th will be in Piriápolis, the 26th in Pan de Azúcar and in Aiguá on the 4th of March. Hope this helps – happy carnival! — Karen

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