Recap: Carnaval Del Sol 2018

I was offered a Super Pass as media to Carnaval de Sol 2018,  the biggest Latin festival in the Pacific Northwest. The Fiestas had included 2 days of celebration of Latin American Culture. It took place at Concord Pacific Place near the Plaza of Nations with beautiful downtown landmarks such as BC Place as the backdrop.

Thousands of locals and visitors came to enjoy the vibrant and passionate atmosphere, highlighted with live music,  visual art, dance parties from different Latin countries. Food was a huge attraction here as it is one of the most important integral parts of Latino culture.

Here are the fiestas for the foodies onsite:

  • the Food Plaza, featuring vendors serving food of many Latin American countries
  • the Beer Plaza, the 600-seat space is featuring local beers and all sorts of alcoholic beverages, delicious food and live music, which is the ultimate fun beer garden for hanging out with friends
  • the Experience Plaza, where the Delicioso Cooking Demo Shows took place featuring international and chefs giving delicious cooking lessons.

With the Super Pass, guests would have the admission to the festival for both days (July 7th & 8th), and a fast VIP entry to skip the large lines at the entrance gate and the Beer Plaza. The super pass holders would also have access to the Tim Hortons Lounge where guests would have a premium view of the Main Stage, and given lots of goodies: souvenirs, snacks, free entry to giveaway contest and 15% off discounts at the merchandise tent.  And the super pass only costs $10.

Tim Horton Lounge @ Carnaval Del Sol
Tim Horton Lounge @ Carnaval Del Sol

I was hungry and went straight to the Food Plaza, where tasty dishes from different Latin countries were offered at reasonable prices.  This reminds me of the Richmond Night Market but here it was all about the Latin flavours. A night market with Latin food vendors might be a great idea for the summer!

Columbia Street Food
Columbia Street Food 
Columbia Street Food
Columbia Street Food
Fresh Lemonade
Fresh Lemonade
Fresh Mango Snacks
Fresh Mango Snacks
Churros
Churros

My favourite vendor was the Pambazos & Tamales stand, where the famous Mexican street dishes made available. This was a great experience for my roommate Shun, who never had either pambazo or tamales. The pambazo sandwich was filled with sausage bits, cheese and fresh lettuce, as well the hot and savoury condiments and sauce as the binder. To Shun, tamale was similar the dragon boat wrapped dumplings made with bamboo leaves and sticky rice in China, whereas tamale was made with corn husk and masa, showing very similar looks, texture, and taste! It was all very fascinating to him.

Pambazos & Tamales
Pambazos & Tamales
Pambazos
Pambazos
Tamales
Tamales

The rest of the food vendors attracts long lines of folks to get a taste of the unique flavour of specific Latin nation.

There were also vendors from award-winning restaurants such as La Taqueria.

With the newly given energy from amazing food, we walked around and checked out the rest of the festival.

Arts and Merchandise Tents
Arts and Merchandise Tents
Chipotle Lounge
Chipotle Lounge

The Kid’s Plaza is one of the busiest spots, as this is one of the most family-friendly festivals, and the vibrant colours make little children excited.

Kid's Plaza
Kid’s Plaza
Kid's Plaza
Kid’s Plaza

The other important attraction for foodies here was the Experience Plaza, where international and local Latin chefs were giving cooking lessons. It is very important to understand the amazing flavours in the food we just tried and potentially apply them to our home cooking.

Experience Plaza
Experience Plaza
Experience Plaza
Experience Plaza
Experience Plaza
Experience Plaza

And if you were looking for a fun dance party, here at the YVR Travel Plaza, the live music and the performers had brought the crowd a heck of a time.

YVR Travel Plaza @ Carnaval Del Sol 2018
YVR Travel Plaza @ Carnaval Del Sol 2018

Every carnival or festival needs a good beer garden, and so did Carnaval Del Sol! The 600-seat Beer Plaza can accommodate hundreds of people, who would get to enjoy local and international wines, beers and cocktails,  delicious food and amazing live music. The year the featured beers are from Pacific Western Brewing

Carnaval Del Sol 2018
Carnaval Del Sol 2018

Final thought

This is my first time attending Carnaval Del Sol presented by Latincouver,  and what an incredible time!  This is one of the best-organized festivals for all ages, and rather eye opening to people who like to know more about Latino culture.  I was in the process of moving to Downtown from Richmond on the weekend, but I was glad to take such a fun break to check out the fiestas.  And the food was simply amazing, and it was a great opportunity to learn about Latino food and culture from so many different Latin American countries. I will be back next year!

 

For more information, check out:

Carnaval Del Sol 2018

Latincouver

 

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