Notting Hill Carnival 2011 Information and Parties
Notting Hill Carnival is London's most vibrant celebration of diversity, colour and sound. Originally started as an offshoot of the Trinidad Carnival in 1964, the Notting Hill Carnival has become an internationally acclaimed event which remains true to its Caribbean roots. Today, it's Europe's largest street festival with millions of visitors enjoying live Masquerade bands, Soundsystems, street food, dancing and parades.
Notting Hill Carnival 2011 is going to be the warm up for the huge Olympic Carnival Party in 2012 so expect it to be bigger, better and a lot more going on than usual. They are expecting the usual 1.5 million visitors to swell to 5 million for 2012!
Notting Hill Carnival Parade
Notting Hill Carnival 2011 Key Information
1) The Carnival bands take to the Notting Hill streets at about 9am on Sunday 28th August 2011 and Monday 29th August 2011. Sunday is children's day and Monday is adults day. Carnival parades normally finish at 9pm.
2) To get to the Carnival, due to mass road closures, the best way is by public transport. Either get buses to Ladbroke Grove, Notting Hill Gate or the Westbourne Grove area and walk into the Carnival. Or get the underground to Notting Hill Gate, Royal Oak, Westbourne Park or Bayswater. This means you can have a few Notting Hill drinks too!!
3) All the action takes place on the east side of Ladbroke Grove and west of Great Western Road and from Harrow Road (at the north) down to Notting Hill Gate (at the south)
4) There's nothing quite like the distinct Carribean aroma at the Notting Hill Carnival. The Notting Hill Carnival provides the perfect introduction to Carribean delights such as, jerk chicken, rice and peas and rum punch as well as other exotic cuisines. There are also hundreds of food stall on people's doorsteps and more official ones along the Notting Hill streets, serving patties, curries, jerk chicken and fried plantain.
Jerk Chicken Stall at Notting Hill Carnival
5) As well as food the main pull of the Notting Hill Carnivalm is of course the music. Expect most types of music to be pumped into your ears throughout the day and night. Historically steel bands, Soca & Calypso Music have been at the heart of Carnival but also at the many static soundsystems you will hear anything from Reggae to R&B, Funk, House, Dub booming down the streets.
Notting Hill Carnival drummers
Notting Hill Carnival 2011 - Best Soundsystems
The Notting Hill Carnival is known for its banging static soundsystems scattered around the normally sleepy Notting Hill streets. Find one that takes your fancy and dance around all day and night with a Dark and Stormy cocktail in one hand and a plate of jerk chicken in the other. Below I have selected my Top 5 soundsystems you should try out:
1) KCC and The Rocking Crew
Located just off Ladbroke Grove at the north end of the Carnival, on Womington Road is KCC and The Rocking Crew. For those of you who love soulfull house then this is the soundsystem for you. Groove away with your hands in the air all day and night here.
Good Times at The Notting Hill Carnvial
Rampage is the biggest soundsystem at the Carnival and is located at the southern end of the carnival on Colville Gardens. Expect live PAs, banging tunes and Tynchy Strider will be playing Rampage this year.
3) Latin Rave Street Jam
Located bang in the middle on the corner of Portobello Road and Golborne Road, Latin Rave Street Jam has the acclaim of being the only purely latino flavoured soundsystem. So dust down your Ricky Martin hips, grab a chica and get down, dirty and latino!
Notting Hill Carnival street performers
Located just south of The Westway on Tavistock Road, CMC/Matrix is the only purely Drum'N'Bass soundsystem. So if you like your bass hard and your drums banging then join thousands of other DnB lovers at this hardcore soundsystem.
Located south of The Westway on St.Luke's Road is Killawat, a legendary Ragga soundsystem. I'm not sure this will sell it but Killawat was founded by the uncle of Romeo from So Solid Crew fame!
Special Event: Seemingly ever present at every festival and party this year, Red Bull are hosting a special Carnival Party. The Red Bull Music Academy has teamed up with Major Lazer for a banging party Under The Westway on Monday 29th Augsuts. Expect the dancehall vibe with more experimental and adventurous sounds. This years line-up also includes the legendary Jamaican sound system from Miami; Black Chiney, plus front runner of the Moombahton movement, Dillon Francis playing back-to-back with Brodinski (one of the most exciting DJs to explode in recent years) plus very secret, very special guests. Tickets are released at 10am on 11th August on www.redbull.co.uk/carnival
Whatever you decide to do at the Notting Hill Carnival 2011, ensure you stay safe, look after your posessions and most of all, enjoy an unforgettable weekend at Europe's biggest and best street party!