City Guide to Edinburgh, Scotland

City Guide to Edinburgh, Scotland

Edinburgh Festival Carnival

By edg - Posted on 14 July 2018

Jazz festival tambourine
Event details
Sunday, July 15, 2018 - 1:30pm - 4:00pm
Telephone (info): 
0131 467 5200

A free, family music and dance event with a flamboyant, festive flavour, the Edinburgh Festival Carnival takes place on the opening weekend of the Edinburgh International Jazz and Blues Festival.

The Carnival begins with a parade of hundreds (over 800 in 2018) of performers - many dressed in colourful costumes from around the world. The parade goes from the top of the Mound, down Princes Street to West Princes Street Garden for an afternoon of music, drumming, dance, acrobatics, and interactive kids' activities centred around the Ross Band Stand around the garden.

Tens of thousands of people are expected to line the streets all the way down the Mound for the procession and to pour into the Garden and Grassmarket for the afternoon performances.


1.30pm: The Parade is led from The Mound to West Princes Street Gardens.

2.30-4pm: Non-stop performances at Ross Band Stand and West Princes Street Gardens.

Acts lined up this year include:

  • Bombrando ( Portugal)
  • Gwanaval (France)
  • Nice (Iceland)
  • Enjoy Street Theatre (Italy)
  • Edinburgh Chinese Art and Culture Committee
  • Artscape Theatre (South Africa)
  • Edinburgh Samba School
  • Beltane Society
  • Pulse of the Place
  • Brass Aye
  • Dream Warriors (USA)
  • Meninos do Morumbi (Brazil)
  • 3Canal (Trinidad)
  • Acitae (Cuba)
  • Barefeet Acrobats (Zambia)
  • Kalentura (Netherlands)
  • La Paranxza del Greco (Italy)

This event is free.


The Edinburgh Festival Carnival was introduced to Edinburgh's festivals calendar in 2012 as a way of kicking off the summer festivals calendar with some razzamatazz, and to make up for the loss of two major free events in August, the Edinburgh Festivals' Cavalcade and Fringe Sunday.