Visit Rio during Carnaval and have the time of your life!

Fancy dancing samba in the street from dusk 'til dawn? There's no greater party on earth than this iconic festival of Rio de Janeiro, so focus on perfecting those saucy samba steps. Join the conga line, move and shake in the drum-fuelled street parties, witness the festivities reach their dizzying climax and get swept up in this magic celebration of life. This is the ideal extension to any South American trip or a great adventure in its own right. Sign up for the party of a lifetime and join the spectacle of Rio Carnaval.

Start
Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Finish
Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Countries
Brazil
Themes
Festivals and Events
Code
GDRA
Physical rating
Cultural rating
Ages
Min 18
Group size
Min 4 Max 22
Carbon offset
0kg pp per trip


Highlights

  • Witness the kaleidoscopic colours of the Sambadrome
  • Experience the pulsating energy of Rio
  • Soak up spectacular views from Corcovado Mountain
  • Marvel at the legendary Christ the Redeemer monument
  • Ride a cable car up Sugarloaf Mountain
  • Cruise the waters of Guanabara Bay
  • Dance up a storm in Rio, the world's samba capital

Itinerary

Border information: if you are joining in Rio de Janeiro, you will most likely exit Brazil at Rio de Janeiro Galeão International Airport.

The first day of Rio Carnival is free time as everyone will be arriving at various times throughout the day to start the package. Our hotel check-in is from midday, and Dragoman staff will be on hand to give you assistance.

There will be a joining meeting in the afternoon - please check the notice board in the lobby/reception area for the exact times for your meeting.

In Rio de Janeiro we will stay in a great hotel in the Flamengo district, close to the beach and the metro station.

OPTIONAL ACTIVITIES
Join your group and your guide for a welcome meal in Rio de Janeiro : BRL 50
This morning we will go on an introductory walking tour with our local guide to get to know the local area and orientate ourselves. We will then head to one of the local 'blocos' (street parades) with the guide, who will show us the ropes!

In the afternoon there's the option to go for a guided visit to the Morrinho Project, a favela community project supported by Dragoman. If you have opted for this tour you will be picked up at the hotel by an English speaking guide and travel to and from the project by air conditioned minibus.

INCLUDED ACTIVITIES
Take an introductory walking tour to get to know the local area and then join a street parade with your guide to experience how the Cariocas (people of Rio) celebrate carnival

OPTIONAL ACTIVITIES
Visit one of Rio de Janeiro's famous favelas and the Project Morrinho, a Dragoman-supported community project and art installation run by the youth of the area : GBP 52
Early this morning we have the option to head to Corcovado and its world-famous statue of Christ the Redeemer for a half-day guided tour. The statue of Christ the Redeemer is one of the most iconic sights of Rio de Janeiro, and if the weather is clear there is also a fantastic view over the rest of the city including Pão de Açúcar (Sugarloaf Mountain). If you have opted for this tour you will be picked up at the hotel by an English speaking guide and travel in an air conditioned bus. We normally charter a private tram to the top of Corcovado mountain which means that we are the first ones to arrive and have the statue to ourselves for a short time - a fantastic privilege at any time of year but particularly during the busy carnival time. We will aim for the same arrangements this year but please note that there is no guarantee that we will be able to secure a private tram.

In the evening it's time for the main event of the week - the parade in the Sambadrome. The top samba schools parade their fantastic floats and costumes and the party goes on well into the early hours of Monday morning. You'll be situated in sector 13, the most lively of the sectors where local Cariocas are supporting their favourite Samba schools by singing and dancing. The sector is at the very end of the runway and you have the chance of collecting parts of the costumes as some dancers will throw them up in to the stand. You will travel between the hotel and the Sambadrome by Metro (tickets included), accompanied by English speaking guides who will also be with you inside the Sambadrome. As people wish to leave at different times, there will be pre-determined times when you will be able to go back to the hotel with a guide.

Please note that sector 13 is set back a bit from the actual runway so does not offer the best close up views of the parade - if you should wish, there is the option to upgrade to sector 11 for a much closer view of the parade, which is highly recommended if you're interested in photography and would like the best pictures of the costumes and floats. The same guide and travel arrangements as for sector 13 will apply.

INCLUDED ACTIVITIES
Party all night to the fantastic and eclectic sounds and sights of the Samba parade at Rio de Janeiro's Sambadrome

OPTIONAL ACTIVITIES
Take a half-day tour the amazing statue of Christ the Redeemer on the top of the Corcovado mountain, one of the New Seven Wonders of the World and a world-famous icon of Brazil - taking in the breathaking views of Rio de Janeiro and the bay below : GBP 65

Get closer to the incredible action in Rio de Janeiro's Sambadrome with a ticket to Sector 11 - recommended to get some fantastic close up photos of the Samba parade! : GBP 130
This morning is free for you to recover from last night in the Sambadrome! It's a great chance to hit the beach, explore the city or simply have a lie in.

In the afternoon we have the chance to go on an optional guided visit to Pão de Açúcar (Sugarloaf Mountain), rising almost 400 metres above the harbour. If you have opted for this tour you will be picked up at the hotel by an English speaking guide and travel in an air conditioned bus. We will take the cable car up to the top, from where there's a chance of seeing the wonderful vistas over the city and Copacabana and Ipanema beaches. If the weather is clear you will also be able to see Christ the Redeemer looking down at the city from the top of Corcovado mountain.

In the evening we have the chance to re-visit the Sambadrome to see the last 6 of the elite Samba schools parading. The seats tonight are in Sector 5, situated at the start of the runway and offering close up views of the parade. You will travel between the hotel and the Sambadrome by Metro (tickets included) with an English speaking guide.

There is also the option to don a costume and take part in the parade itself, dancing your way down the Sambadrome runway - a once in a lifetime experience! You will travel between the hotel and the Sambadrome by Metro (tickets included) with an English speaking guide who will also accompany you during the parade.

OPTIONAL ACTIVITIES
Take a second visit to the Sambadrome, and get a close view of the action in Sector 5 : GBP 230

Join in and be part of the Sambadrome Parade, an absolutely unforgettable experience of a lifetime! : GBP 525

Get some of the most phenomenal views of Rio de Janeiro on a half-day guided tour up to the Pão de Açúcar (Sugarloaf Mountain) : GBP 63
Today is another free day to explore Rio de Janeiro further, and perhaps to find one of the blocos (street parades) that take place during the Carnival and continue the party.

In the evening we have the chance to put on our most outrageous outfits and head to the Gay Ball! The ticket to the Gay Ball includes the entrance, open bar and assorted finger food.

OPTIONAL ACTIVITIES
Get dressed up in your most extravagant outfit and head out to the Gay Ball, the most colourful and exuberant ball at the Carnival! : GBP 80
Border information: if you are leaving in Rio de Janeiro, you will most likely exit Brazil at Rio de Janeiro Galeão International Airport.

The Carnival package finishes after breakfast today. Our hotel check-out is at 12 noon, and you can depart at any time or spend the day exploring further or relaxing.

OPTIONAL ACTIVITIES
Visit the iconic Escadaria Selaron, a colourful tiled staircase lovingly created by local resident Jorge Selaron : Free

Explore the stunning natural Atlanic rainforest of Tijuca, the largest urban forest in the world : Free

Explore the magnificent Botanical Gardens of Rio de Janeiro, with over 54 hectares and 6500 species of plants and flowers : BRL 8

Relax and explore the world famous beaches of Rio de Janeiro, including Ipanema, Arpoador, and of course Copacabana : Free

Visit the Museu da República, and learn all about the turbulent recent history of Brazil and the story of the creation of the republic in 1889 : BRL 6

Visit Rio de Janeiro's Modern Art Museum, showcasing some incredible local and international art exhibitions, and an incredible building in its own right : BRL 12

Find out all about Brazil's fascinating history by visiting the National Historical Museum in the centre of Rio de Janeiro : BRL 6
View trip notes to read full itinerary

Inclusions

Meals
n/a
Transport
Private Bus, Metro
Accommodation
Hotel (5 nights)

Dates

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Important notes

1. You may be joined by up to 140 fellow travellers on this trip however will be split into smaller groups of up to 24 for included activities.
2. There are several optional activities available with this itinerary, and which must be booked in advance. These are listed under each day in the trip notes. Please see Trip Notes (Optional Activities) for booking instructions.

Trip notes

Want an in-depth insight into this trip? Your trip notes provide a detailed itinerary, visa info, how to get to your hotel, what’s included - pretty much everything you need to know about this adventure and more.

View trip notes

Reviews

Our Rio Carnaval Package Basix trips score an average of 2.5 out of 5 based on 2 reviews in the last year.

Rio Carnival Package Basix , February 2016