Edinburgh Festival Carnival rocks Princes Street

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Thousands of spectators crammed Princes Street and the city’s picturesque gardens yesterday as a riot of colour and glorious sunshine marked the official start of Edinburgh’s festival season.

The city centre was transformed for the second annual Festival Carnival - a two-hour mix of vibrant street entertainment ranging from a Caribbean marching band to a Chinese dragon.

Performers making their way along Princes Street. Picture: Lesley Martin

Performers making their way along Princes Street. Picture: Lesley Martin

At one “hot spot” in Princes Street Gardens, a group of energetic musicians wielding trumpets, saxophones and even drums gave people a taste of the delights on offer at this week’s Jazz and Blues Festival.

A brass band stopped visitors in their tracks in the Gardens’ west end. Chinese dancers, Polish clowns and a Parisian children’s choir added an international flair to proceedings.

Free runners and breakdancers showed off their unique skills. About 400 entertainers were involved overall in spreading the carnival atmosphere.

Trish Fearon, 59, travelled in from Dalgety Bay and wasn’t taking the expansive blue skies for granted.

The Edinburgh Samba School in action. Picture: Lesley Martin

The Edinburgh Samba School in action. Picture: Lesley Martin

She said: “It’d be so different if it was raining, so we’re very lucky that we’ve had a good day. A picnic in the park - you can’t beat it.”

Father Elliot Johnston, 39, from Penicuik, enjoyed the spectacle with children Rebecca, 15, and Lewis, nine. He said: “It’s amazing the things that are on your doorstep.”