2018 will be remembered as one of the best years for the Puerto Plata Carnival, an event that was very entertaining for locals and tourists, celebrated as we write this article, every Sunday in the Malecon ( ocean drive ) of Long Beach, Puerto Plata. 5-6 months are spent in preparations for this event, which is a very enriching experience for those who enjoy watching a colorful display of Dominican Republic culture.
The carnival celebration was introduced by Europeans on the 16th century, years after Christopher Columbus first set foot in Hispaniola island ( La Isabela, Puerto Plata, 1492 ). Many characters of the Carnival were added throughout the years, stemming from social, political, and historical backgrounds of Dominican life.
Each major town and city of the island has its own version of the Carnaval, being the top ones the ones from Santo Domingo ( the capital ), La Vega, and Bonao. Seeing the cojuelos ( devils ) and Lechones ( pig faced characters ) is easy to tell there`s a lot of African influence in the carnaval.
This year, for 2018 it was reported that King Momo is the prominent artist Rafael Tolentino, while the Queen of Carnival Puerto Plata 2018 is Miss Oscaira Reyes Souffront, where the different tribes of Taimáscaros, the Diablos Cojuelos groups, will be presented, as well of the comparsas and individuals, also having as a first musical attraction the group Salsera Revolution (The New Era) that will be on stage popular with the sponsorship of the liquor company Brugal & Company.
VIDEO: 2018 PUERTO PLATA CARNIVAL
The activities were extended to the central park where the cathedral is, and a children`s carnival was organized to bring the little ones. We noticed many kids in El Malecon with their parents, that later followed up with the park activities.
Security is heavy on the event, a great feeling for Puerto Plata as there are agents from Cestur, National Police, AMET and national guards. The carnival association of Puerto Plata ( UCAPPLATA ) has taken many extra steps to make this carnival better than all the previous ones. There`s 2 more weeks to enjoy it, all though February. The big one will take place in Santo Domingo, the first week of March.