Festival International du Cirque de Monte-Carlo
What? A highlight of the Monaco events calendar, this international circus festival has long held the support of the Grimaldis. The main event takes place over 10 days and features performances from leading international acts from acrobats to fire eaters. Last year’s circus attracted 120 artists from 16 countries! In 2018, the modern circus is celebrating its 250th anniversary and as such, the festival has invited world-class artists (slack-wire walker Huang Yang, the Acrobatic Troupe of Shanghai and white poodle whisperer Evgeniy Komiarenko) to perform. The New Generation event on 3rd and 4th February celebrates young performers, such as the Russian Bar act from Shanghai who won the 2017 Junior d’Or title.
When? 18th to 28th January & 3rd to 4th February
Where? Chapiteau de Fontvieille, Monaco
Carnaval de Nice
What? Since 1873, a parade of floats, musicians and dancers has made its way throughout the streets of Nice (almost) every February. The twice daily parades and signature flower battles attract thousands to the city for each performance, and an increasing number of smaller ‘neighbourhood’ carnivals have been added to the unofficial programme in recent years. The 2018 theme is space and the constellations – expect this year’s giant structures to be out of this world!
When? 17th February to 3rd March
Where? Promenade des Anglais & Place Masséna
Fête du Citron
What? The iconic fruit of Menton is celebrated before 240,000 spectators! This festival is a true treat for the senses, with 145 tonnes of fresh citrus used in displays across the city. The theme this time – after Cinecittà and Italian cinema in 2016 and Broadway last year – is Bollywood so we can expect a particularly colourful few weeks. Exhibitions and Golden Fruit parades will be taking place throughout the festival and the special Gardens of Light experience in the Biovès Gardens will be open on 17th and 23rd February and 2nd March from 8.30pm to 10.30pm – you’ll need at least an hour to take it all in!
When? 17th February to 4th March
Fête du Mimosa
What? Following the inauguration at the Chapelle Notre Dame des Mimosas on the first night, the festival and its parades will spread throughout the town. Aquatic acrobats and fireworks will delight on Friday 23rd February while a night-time parade with a big band takes place on the Saturday night. The following day brings another family favourite: the two-hour Le Corso Fleuri in La Napoule. The Office de Tourisme de Mandelieu has created a number of excursions and experiences alongside the festival, such as the visit to a producer of the flower with a walk through the largest mimosa ‘forest’ in Europe and the creation of a mimosa-infused perfume in Grasse. To add more action to your day, why not head out onto a section of La Route du Mimosa – a 130km trail from Bormes-Les-Mimosas to Grasse? It’s the perfect time of year for it.
When? 20th to 28th February
Where? Mandelieu-La Napoule