Annual Notting Hill Carnival parade in west London

2009-09-01 19:45 BJT

There's only a handful of days in a year where you can truly rid your mind of life's worries. The annual Notting Hill Carnival is one of those days.

All along the 5-kilometer route is littered with masquerade artists, colorful costumes and soothing music.

"I'm very excited to come this year."

The largest carnival in Europe dates back nearly half a century, and always begins with a Children's Day.

Crowds hit the streets of West London, to join in the ocean of dancers.

"Today is the day to take it out and to be completed frassed, frassed like we say in Jamaica, frassed meaning chill out. And just enjoy the food, enjoy the music. It's carnival man, it's brilliant."

Tasty food is another attraction to the carnival.

You can eat in ways you normally don't.

And work in unusual ways.

"I'm partying and working at the same time. Nice foods."

And it also allows people to pretend to be something they are not.

"We have to let our queen speak."

"This carnival is a representation of the world. And for us it is very important and significant for the movement towards peace in our planet."

Organizers say the carnival offers the perfect venue for people to forget their daily problems.

Michael Williams, Notting Hill Carnival Organizer, said, "It offers joy, it offers fun, it offers a couple of days where you can just forget everything and you just enjoy yourself."

The Notting Hill Carnival started in 1964 by Caribbean immigrants.

Every August, hundreds of thousands of people come to London, to party in the streets at one of the world's biggest carnivals.