The Carnival of Rio de Janeiro is by far the most popular in the world.
The Carnival of Rio de Janeiro perfectly embodies the spirit of this festivity. Since Brazil is a very catholic country, people during the Carnival enjoy all those pleasures that will be totally forbidden during the 40 days of Lent.
The Lent actually starts the day after Mardi Gras, which is the peak of these incredible celebrations.
The history of this lovely Carnival is very interesting!
In the 1930s the European middle class brought the habit of celebrating the Carnival to Brazil. In Europe, especially in Paris, parades and fancy dresses were very fashionable at that time.
Little by little this tradition became very popular and towards the end of the 19th century the first cordões (ropes) appeared. They were groups of people who used to parade along the streets singing and playing music. From these cordões came the blocos (quarters), groups of people who came from a specific area of the city and used to parade all dressed up, playing drums and dancing salsa.
Nowadays there are more than 100 blocos with different traditions and customs who celebrate in specific streets of the city.
What is the Carnival of Rio famous for?
Well, the parades of the main salsa schools of Rio are definitely the most spectacular thing! Actually, there is a proper competition between them.
Every year each school chooses a theme and creates a great show which lasts 80 minutes: the parades take place in the Sambódromo for four nights and, at the end, the best school wins! But there is more than that.
During the Carnival the whole city is on fire!
It is filled up with people in colourful costumes dancing in every corner, amazing events to take part in, music everywhere and the lovely warmth of local population.
Visiting Rio during the Carnival is perfect to discover more about the local culture and enjoy it fully! Just follow the crowd waving through the city centre to feel an incredible energy!
Here you can see some incredible pictures.
Do you want to discover more Carnival celebrations?
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