Touted as the Cayman’s only national carnival, Batabano is held annually during the first week of May and its name is a salute to the tracks left behind by turtles on the beach when they come to nest. Finding these tracks was, and still is, a reason to celebrate. A cultural celebration filled with music, dance and elaborate costumes that reflect the landscape, heritage and culture of the Cayman Islands, Batabano is now celebrating its 35th year. It is a wild, vibrant and colourful celebration filled with Caribbean music, dance, elaborate costumes, lots of rum, feasting on local cuisine, parties and cultural events.
The carnival starts off with the Cayman Carnival Batabano Street Parade, which starts at 1:00 PM on May 4th at Public Beach on West Bay Road and culminates in George Town. The parade consists of masquerade bands and exotic costumes bursting with a variety of coloured feathers. Event chair, Donna Myrie-Stephen, leads the parade with an incredible, one-of-a-kind costume that should not be missed.
Hundreds of people “jump” or participate annually in the street parade accompanied by soca music that will make anyone want to dance as they watch the festival goers make their way to George Town. The parade winds around the centre of town and ends on Harbour Drive with entertainment covering six genres of music and the annual food festival.
Of course, all roads to lead George Town during Batabano and one of the most popular events is the Batabano Food Festival, which is held from 12PM to midnight on Cardinall Avenue. In the culinary capital of the Caribbean, the Batabano Food Festival is not to be missed. This ultimate street food extravaganza features local food vendors serving up the best and most delicious Caymanian, Caribbean and International cuisine.
Starting at 6:00 PM, the Batabano Last Lap takes place in George Town following the street parade and features three stages with live music in the streets to dance to until midnight. It allows the party to continue after the parade and features music from local and visiting artists and DJs.
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WHERE & WHEN
Street Parade starts at 1:00 PM on May 4th at Public Beach on West Bay Road and culminates in George Town. The annual street parade party starts at 6:00PM in George Town featuring three stages with live music and dancing to until midnight