Rio Carnival is the biggest party in the world. It takes place every year between February and March, 40 days before Easter week. The celebration takes place throughout the country but the main party is in Rio de Janeiro.
The whole carnival takes place over a whole month. There are organized street parties called Blocos in different areas of Rio and private parties at every turn. People are on the streets in beautiful and sometimes skimpy costumes dancing the Samba.
The main carnival parade concludes the celebrations and takes place over four days. It´s a big competition between the main Samba schools like Salgueiro, Portela and Mangueira and it takes place in the Sambadrome, a long stadium built just for this celebration. The parade is the main part of the carnival. People go to the Sambadrome wearing many different costumes and spend the whole night dancing. It’s the most important party in the country. From where we sit, in Sector 13, it is possible to sometimes get hold of the dancers costumes who finish the parade early. They normally throw away their costumes once they have finished.
The carnival is also on the streets, there are people everywhere wearing costumes, dancing and drinking beer. You can listen samba everywhere. There are also samba bands on the main beaches like Copacabana and Ipanema singing and dancing. It’s a great atmosphere and a great place to spend the day. People can swim at Rio’s famous beaches, dance and drink caipirinha, the famous local drink.
Rio Carnival is one of Tucan Travel’s busiest times of year with many tours arriving in Rio in time for Rio Carnival. These tours are their Overland Tours, Budget Expeditions and Adventure Tours. These tours starts in cities like Lima, Quito, La Paz, Buenos Aires and Santiago and all the groups travel for weeks around the continent until they reach Rio Carnaval. Just before the trucks and tours get to Rio de Janeiro all the groups meet at a little town called Parati (4 hrs. South of Rio). This is where the party starts and hundreds of people get to meet each other, share their stories and make plans for the coming weekend. It is also the first time that the Tour Leaders and Drivers get to see their friends after weeks or months of hard work. All the groups get to Rio de Janeiro on the same day and the majority of our passengers stay for the main parade in the Sambadrome. It’s a great time as people meet other travelers, share stories, go party and visit the main attractions of Rio, like Sugar Loaf Mountain, Corcovado and the favelas.
In all of the hotels that Tucan Travel use during Rio Carnival, they have a help desk, run by members of staff. They offer many optional excursions for the those enjoying Rio Carnival and it is on these helpdesks that they can be booked. There are city tours, football games and favela tours as well as hang gliding over the city. We also give to the Rio Carnivallers all the information about the Blocos, parties, parades and activities. On the night of the Sambadrome we all walk there together.
Find out more about Tucan Travel’s Rio Carnival’s options here.