Carnaval takes place 40 days before the begining of Holy Week...basically, it's celebrate & enjoy before playing it "solemn" for the 40 days of Lent. Two cities of Spain, in particular, put on performances, spectaculers that are the equivalent to the US's Mardi Gras.
People dressed-up as true characters (not like the sleazy costumes that have become popular in the States during Halloween)...& although it pretty much looked like Walt Disney threw up, it was enjoyable all the same! I wanted to take some pictures of the costumes I saw (like pirates, or Whiney the Pooh) but felt too much like a creeper so I didn't other than this one picture...
In my city I enjoyed free concerts each of the four nights of celebration, featuring groups of different genres each night!
Also, there were carnaval-like rides (although more for the kids) and lots of amazing Spanish food! (& yes, those are what they look like).