Carnival in Rio de Janeiro

Carnival in Rio de Janeiro

June 21, 2006

Why Carnival in Rio is special

CarnivalCarnival in Rio has been called the world's most famous party. A million tourists join millions of Rio de Janeiro citizens ("cariocas") in enthusiastic revelry spanning several days.

CarnivalThe highlight is the Sambodromo parade. Close runners-up are the street processions and masquerade balls. The Sambodromo is a 700-meter (half-mile) long parade strip flanked by spectator stands and luxury boxes. On the last Sunday and Monday nights before Lent, the seats are filled with over 60,000 eager on-lookers.

CarnivalThe attraction is the sounds and sights of the parading samba schools that goes on from dusk to day break. A samba school has nothing to do with education. It is typically a group from a poor neighborhood organized to produce a lavish Carnival procession - for the fun of it.

Carnival calendar

CarnivalCarnival takes place during the days preceding Ash Wednesday, the first of 40 meatless fasting days preceding Easter (Carnival derives from "carne vale" meaning "farewell to meat"). Although the official Carnival starting day is Saturday, the partying begins in earnest the night before and continues through Tuesday (Mardi Gras means "Fat Tuesday").

We have tribune and special chair tickets to the carnival parade.