It’s that time again! The 2017 Bahamas Junkanoo Carnival is just around the corner and we’re looking forward to a weekend of music, dance, and partying in Paradise. Learn more about this uniquely Bahamian tradition, and all things Junkanoo, with our guide.
Junkanoo is a cultural dance and music celebration unique to The Bahamas that dates back hundreds of years. Its history is hotly contested and there are several theories about its origins. One is that it is named in tribute to John Canoe, an African tribal chief. Another is that it derives from the French gens inconnu, meaning “unknown people” in reference to the masks that were worn in the original Junkanoo parades of the 18th century. Some say it began as a slave celebration on one of their few holidays during the year. It’s always been a celebratory masquerade tradition however participants have been known to voice their political opinions during Junkanoo parades by satirizing politicians or social issues of the day. No matter its beginnings, today’s festivities are a can’t-miss cultural event.