Notting Hill Carnival for a while now. I just realized I won't be here for it and I'm SO disappointed. I went to it several years ago while visiting London and had a great time - like being in Rio for Carnival! The food is great, the music is right up my alley - Calypso, Soca, samba, steel drums - the stuff that gets in the blood and MAKES you dance. Love it!
They have a parade that rivals that of any parade I've been to. That includes Carnival, Mardi Gras and my home country's Junkanoo. (Click on Junakoo for a video!) They have beautiful and even outrageous costumes and parade through Notting Hill. They work months on the design and building of the costumes and it shows - they are spectacular! On Sunday it's the Children's Parade, which I had hoped to take Cate and X to - but will have to wait - but, please, dress up the kids in costumes and GO if you can. It's loads of fun.
Finally, the food - it's all the fare I grew up on: peas and rice, jerk chicken, fried plantains, etc. etc. I'm getting hungry just thinking about it!
If you do go but have to travel I found this website that is offering discounts of £15 off flexible rate room bookings at Travelodge. It's worth looking into.
The carnival is this coming Sunday and Monday - August 29th and 30th. Go and let me know how it much fun you had. Wish I was going too.... (I am not affiliated with the Carnival - I just really like it!)