The Traditional Kurentovanje Carnival in Ptuj


In February Slovenia’s oldest town, Ptuj, hosted the 56th Kurentovanje Carnival, also known as pust, the biggest cultural-ethnographic and carnival event in Slovenia. Visitors to the event enjoy watching the parade of imaginative carnival costumes which occupy the town’s streets. Join the growing number of visitors and help to drive away winter by calling for spring! Experience the time of tomfoolery and the large pust carnival in the town with the oldest wine cellar in Slovenia.

For more than 50 years Ptuj has been hosting the largest cultural-ethnographic and carnival event in the country. Every year there are more than 120,000 visitors and 10,000 costumes from more than 10 countries. This year’s 56th Kurentovanje Festival takes place from 2nd to 9th February. The event begins with the first jump of the kurent – the favourite and most common type of Slovene carnival costume. According to old beliefs, the kurent was a demon who drove away winter and beckoned spring into the countryside. In days gone by, only unmarried men were allowed to dress as kurents, who then walked in groups through villages from Shrove Sunday to Ash Wednesday. The arrival of the kurents meant good luck and a good harvest of crops for the whole year. The most recognisable part of the costume is the mask, which varies among the kurents, as well as the fur costumes worn with cowbells around the waists. During carnival time in Ptuj you can encounter more than 2,000 kurents. The event is not merely a carnival but also a tribute to Slovene heritage.

The Ptuj-based carnival took seventh place among 101 greatest shows in the world by the leading tourist guide book publisher Lonely Planet.

Drive away winter with dancing, fun and pampering in Slovenia’s oldest city!

Read more: Slovenian Tourist Board