Experience the Vibrant Rio de Janeiro Carnival Atmosphere

South America - Editor - 31 December 2007

Experience the Vibrant Rio de Janeiro Carnival Atmosphere

There is only one image that comes to mind when thinking of Rio de Janeiro and that vision is filled with the color, rhythm and festivity of the Rio de Janeiro Carnival.

No-one is quite certain exactly when and from where the festival originated, but there are a few speculations. Most people agree that is the Rio de Janeiro Carnival was derived from a pagan celebration that was known as the rites of spring. This event was held by the Greeks, Romans and most of Europe, and eventually filtered down to Rio in approximately 1850. The Portuguese who travelled to Rio still took part in their annual festival by dancing and parading through the streets, organising dances and parties, and wearing masks and elaborate clothing.

Where they stopped, Rio began, nurturing the Rio de Janeiro Carnival into one of the biggest and most popular festivals in the world. There are festivities and celebration across Brazil during this time, but nothing could compare to the festival extravaganza that takes place in Rio de Janeiro. For four days, exactly forty days before the Easter holiday, the streets of Rio de Janeiro become a sea of bodies, floats and musicians that party, dance and entertain, from one sunrise to the next!

On the 1st of February 2008 the mayor of Rio de Janeiro crowns the Carnival King during the opening of the carnival and the Children’s’ Samba Schools Parade takes place that evening. The festival only really kicks off on the 2nd of February with events such as the Costume Competition, The Copacabana Palace Hotel Magic Ball and the street band competition. A special Samba Schools Parade takes place on Sunday, and on Monday the fun continues in the form of parades, with Tuesday hosting the Gay Costume Ball and more exciting parades throughout the evening. On every evening of the festival there are dances held at Cinelandia, concerts at Samba Land and the Rio Scala Ball.

In every part of the city, in the streets, the Botanical Gardens and in the hills of Santa Teresa, there is something on the go. The days and nights are filled with events and celebrations, dances and parties, and visitors to the festival will definitely need a few days of tranquillity and relaxation to recuperate from the energetic and non-stop thrills of the Rio de Janeiro Carnival. It is an experience that is unique to the city, and an atmosphere that can’t be found anywhere else in the world.


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