Carnival in Rio in the Sambadrome

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Star architect Oscar Niemeyer designed Sambodromo street specially for the Carnival parade in Rio de Janeiro. The best samba schools of Brazil compete for the honor of winning. Preparations for this top event are going on throughout the whole year and represent for many participants their purpose in life. Each samba school participates with around 4’000 members at this competition including 200 to 400 drummers. Even though many regard Carnival in Rio as very touristy – and it certainly is very different from the more traditional Carnival in the North of Brazil – you should by no means miss this unforgettable experience.

Rio de Janeiro’s carnival parade, due to be held February 2021, has been postponed indefinitely because of the Corona pandemic!

In case you find the tickets for Carnival on Sunday and Monday are too expensive we recommend to participate in the event on Saturday after Carnival. This is the day when the winners parade takes place with a defile of the samba groups ranked top five. On this evening you don’t share the competition but the event is by no means less spectacular and the tickets are far cheaper.

How to get to the Sambadrome during Carnival

The Sambadrome is located near two subway stops, and the stop at which you get off to arrive to the Sambadrome will differ based on your sector,
with even sector exiting the subway at the Praça Onze subway station and odd-numbered sectors exiting at the Central subway station.

Even-numbered sectors: Exit Metro Rio at a station called “Estação Praça Onze”.

Odd-numbered sectors Get off the Metro Rio at the “Central” subway station.

For more details, please read here

Carnival dates

Carnival in Rio 2023:
Saturday, February 18 – tuesday February 21
Winner parade: saturday, February 25

Carnival in Rio 2024:
Saturday, February 10 – tuesday February 13
Winner parade: saturday, February 17

Holiday apartment rental at Carnival in Rio de Janeiro

During Carnival in Rio de Janeiro, most apartments (and also hotel rooms) are only rented for a minimum of 5, 7 or 10 nights. The higher prices usually apply from the Wednesday before Carnival until the Sunday after the “winner parade”. You should book an apartment early (about two to three month in advance) as demand is very high at this time.

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