A Quick Guide to Attending Atlanta Carnival 2023

Atlanta Carnival 2023 guide + Atlanta Carnival things to known +Atlanta Dekalb Carnival + Atlanta Caribbean Carnival

Since 1988, Carnival in Atlanta has been an annual celebration known to be first Carnival to kick off the Caribbean Carnival season in the United States.

In addition to celebrating Caribbean culture through the various styles of Caribbean music, dance, delicious food, live entertainment and mas, Atlanta Carnival aims to promote a deeper appreciation and broader understanding of Caribbean culture in the Atlanta community.

If you’re thinking of spending Memorial Day Weekend in Atlanta for Atlanta Carnival 2023, here are some things you need to know.

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When is Atlanta Carnival 2023

The parade of the bands for Atlanta Caribbean Carnival is on May 27, 2023.

With it being a holiday weekend, you can book flights from Thursday-Monday (or Tuesday) and include things to do in Atlanta outside of the parade and fetes. When I attended Atlanta Carnival 2022, I booked the trip from Wednesday-Sunday.

Where to Stay for Atlanta Carnival

If you’re attending the Downtown Atlanta Caribbean Carnival, there are many hotels to choose from in the Atlanta metro area. Hotel rates vary depending on the length of stay and location.

On my several trips to Atlanta, I’ve stayed at the SpringHill Suites Atlanta Downtown, The Westin Peachtree Plaza, Atlanta, and the Courtyard Atlanta Airport South/Sullivan Road.

I recommend staying in College Park, Buckhead, Downtown or Midtown Atlanta since there are a good amount of restaurants and things to do in the area. Last year, I paid an average of $150/night for the room and $40/night for valet parking.

You can research hotels and vacation rentals shown below based on availability and your budget.

Atlanta Carnival Mas Bands

As an established event, both Atlanta Caribbean Carnival have a variety of bands to choose from for the parade of the bands. Costume range from $400+ USD for male and $500+ female frontline, midline, and curvy options depending on the band you choose.

Here is the list of bands for Atlanta carnival. Note that most of the big bands with some exceptions are participating in Atlanta Caribbean Carnival and some have a hard registration closure at the end of March.

Atlanta Caribbean Carnival Mas Bands

For a complete list of bands and how to register, view the parade route, or contact the section leaders, visit the official Atlanta Caribbean Carnival website.

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Where to Fete for Atlanta Carnival

Official events scheduled for Atlanta Carnival 2023 Road Parade & Festival in Stonecrest featuring live performances by Adam O, Viking Ding Dong, Sekon Sta, V’ghn, Hypasounds, and Bunji Garlin and the Downtown Atlanta Caribbean Carnival Concert in Westside Park featuring Pumpa, Motto, Lil Rick, Burning Flames, Farmer Nappy, and more at the festival village.

Both events are a great way to expose the entire family to Caribbean cuisine and culture. Other fetes during the Carnival weekend are SSS Red, Vaval Road, Doves All White Day party, and Epic Fest which hosts 6 different events throughout the festival weekend.

Atlanta Caribbean Carnival Concert

J’ouvert takes place the day before the parade (Friday May 26). Below is a list of J’ouvert Bands for Atlanta Carnival:

Atlanta Caribbean Carnival J'ouvert

Getting Around Atlanta

If you’re staying in Downtown Atlanta and aren’t attending fetes, there really isn’t any need for a car since public transportation and Uber are readily available.

*Tip* Remember to include gas, insurance, and potential parking fees in you budget for choosing a rental.

Things to Do in Atlanta, Georgia

There are tons of outdoor activities and things to do in the Atlanta Metro Area whether you’re solo or with a group. There are also a lot of Black Owned restaurants great for brunch, happy hour and dinner.

If you’re visiting for the first time, here are some things to do during your downtime in the city of Atlanta and surrounding areas for Atlanta Carnival

  • Atlanta Jazz Festival at Piedmont Park May 27-29 (free live music)
  • The Georgia Aquarium
  • SkyView Atlanta
  • World of Coca-Cola Museum
  • Martin Luther King, Jr. National Historical Park
  • Birth Home of Martin Luther King, Jr.
  • Trap Music Museum
  • Centennial Olympic Park
  • High Museum of Art
  • National Center for Civil and Human Rights
  • Atlanta Botanical Garden
  • Hike at Stone Mountain Park

Atlanta Carnival Cost

As always, the cost of any carnival depends on how much you are willing to spend. Last year, I had about two months to plan and paid $340 for my backline costume with Mas with Panache, $887.25 for my hotel, around $500 for a rental car, and about $50 for food and drinks.

If you’re traveling with friends, costs for lodging and car rentals should be split between attendees.

I hope this quick guide to Atlanta Carnival was helpful in your planning. If you have any questions, feel free to leave a comment below or send me an email.

Read More Carnival Planning Guides and Reviews

Ritual, Revelry, Release: Tobago Carnival 2022 Review

A Guide to Planning SXM Carnival 2023

Atlanta Carnival 2022: On the Road with Mas With Panache

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