Dance like Never Before at the Rio De Janeiro Carnival

The Rio Carnival

The Rio Carnival is a 5-day celebration taking place in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. The festival starts 40 days before Easter, on Friday and it ends on Fat Tuesday. This is the biggest carnival in the world and this year, it starts on the 21st of February. Every year, 2 million people go out in the streets daily, of which 500.000 foreigners.

There are several events taking place in the city during this time. We will cover the highlights of the festival but you can see all the events on the official website, where you can also purchase tickets.

Rio Carnival

Highlights of the Rio Carnival

Samba Parade

The highlight of the festival is the Samba Parade, also called Samba Schools Parade. This is where the Rio samba schools compete against each other. The judges and the spectators admire the parade from the Sambadrome, a specially built place to watch the parade.

The samba schools prepare in advance for the carnival, they choose different themes, costumes and tunes specially written for the Rio Carnival.

Outside the Sambodrome

As the Sambodrome is extremely crowded on Samba Parade nights, people gather on the streets and on the beach to dance. Those who parade with costumes join the crowd and make it more colourful with their dresses. If you cannot get in the Sambadrome, don’t worry, you can still experience the carnival’s magic!

The Magic Ball at Copacabana Palace Hotel

The Magic Ball is the most famous and sophisticated Ball during the Rio Carnival. The dress code is elegant, international VIPs are always on the list and the ball takes place in various rooms from the hotel. All the tickets provide entrance to the ballrooms, free open bar and buffet dinner, even though there are different tickets for individual dining rooms. The best way you can enjoy this event is by a standing ticket. Even though it has no seat assigned, there are available seats on the balcony and at other areas close to the buffet.

Scala Balls

These are the second most important and famous balls during the Rio Carnival. It has a 40-year-old history of balls held during the carnival. There are thematic dances every night. There are 3 types of tickets: standing, table or VIP. Only the VIP tickets include free and unlimited drinks and buffet.

Rio Carnival

The History of the Rio Carnival

The first festival dates back to 1723 when the rites of spring were celebrated. People used to throw parties annually to give thanks and made a tradition of wearing masks and dancing in the streets.

The concept of celebration or carnival was first brought to Rio around 1850. Since then, lots of unique elements have been added and the carnival remained a tradition. Today, the Rio Carnival is one of the biggest carnivals in the world.

Rio Carnival

Tours and activities

Small-Group Rio de Janeiro in a Day Tour

By taking this tour you will visit Rio’s most important landmarks such as the Sambadrome, Christ the Redeemer Statue, Cinelandia Square, Corcovado Mountain and you will also ride a cable car to the top of the Sugar Loaf Mountain.

If you miss the Rio Carnival you can still see a recreation of the carnival at one of the many samba shows in Rio. Book this tour to enjoy a delicious dinner and after see the samba performers dancing in colorful costumes.

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