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Rio Carnival Tours & Trips

Attracting revellers from across the globe, Rio Carnival is considered by many to be the greatest party on earth. Carnival festivities create a euphoric atmosphere, giving attendees the chance to let go of their inhibitions and let their true colours shine. Travellers from all over the world come together to dance, sing, and party the night away in one of the world’s most vibrant cities.

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The Highlights of Rio Carnival

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Rio Carnival Facts

  • How long does Rio Carnival last?

    This vibrant 5-day celebration takes place 40 days before Easter, officially beginning on Friday and ending on Fat Tuesday which marks the beginning of Lent. Even though Carnival is celebrated in cities and villages across Brazil and in other Catholic countries, Rio de Janeiro has long been hailed as the Carnival capital of the world. 
  • What is the history of Rio Carnival?

    The Carnival roots run deep, incorporating aspects from various cultures. The original festivities date back to ancient Greeks and Romans celebrating the onset of spring, and Carnival was originally brought from Europe to Brazil by the Portuguese back in 1850. The ball and masquerade rituals were acquired from the French, and other unique elements were derived from Amerindian and African culture.
  • Where can I stay during Rio Carnival?

    It is important to book accommodations for Carnival well in advance, as the best accommodation options will sell out fast. The neighbourhood around the Sambodromo stadium is not overly accommodating for tourists, so avoid booking your accommodation based on proximity to this event. Instead, it is best to do some research on which blocos you want to attend, and book accordingly. It is also wise to book near a metro station so you can easily access the many events around town.
  • How can I get to Rio Carnival?

    Galeão International Airport is Brazil’s largest international airport and is located 20km north of the city centre. The domestic Santos Dumont Airport by Guanabara Bay is next to the city centre, and it offers flights to and from Brazil’s major cities. From the international airport, there are many options for getting to the city centre including bus, taxi and private transfer services.
  • Is Rio Carnival safe?

    Yes, Carnival is safe to experience, but like all great festivals and parties around the world, there are a few precautions that travellers should take in order to stay safe. Pickpockets will be active during the festival so it's best to keep your valuables hidden underneath your clothes and to carry limited amounts of cash on you. If you find yourself in a dangerous situation, just hand over your wallet as it’s not worth the risk to your safety. 
  • Why is Rio Carnival celebrated?

    Long ago, Carnival originated as a traditional Catholic event tied in with historic elements, and today the festival has evolved into the world’s largest (and most exciting) outdoor party and celebrates Brazilian culture. The religious element may not be as present anymore but the performances by the samba schools often reflect stories that highlight certain periods in Brazil’s history, culture and unique traditions. 

Essentials for Rio Carnival

  • Book flights and accommodation as early as possible
  • Book events that require tickets well in advance (Samba Parades, Carnival Balls)
  • Don’t be shy, dance! If you don’t know the samba, no sweat, just move your feet
  • Get in the spirit and dress in costume
  • February in Brazil can be scorching, dress accordingly and don’t forget to lather on the sunscreen
  • Keep your valuables out of sight and leave your expensive jewellery at home
  • Learn the lyrics to some of Brazil’s most popular Carnival songs
  • After long days and nights of partying, rejuvenate on Rio’s gorgeous beaches

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