Join the world's greatest party on the streets of Rio!

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, witness the festivities reach their dizzying climax, move and shake among the drum-fuelled street parties 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
Country
Brazil
Style
Original
Theme
Festivals and Events
Code
GDSB
Physical rating
Ages
Min 18
Group size
Min 4, Max 22

Why we love this trip

  • Witness the kaleidoscopic colours of the Sambadrome

  • Experience the pulsating energy of Rio de Janeiro's Carnaval

  • Soak up spectacular views from Corcovado Mountain

  • Marvel at the legendary Christ the Redeemer statue

  • Dance up a storm in Rio, the world's samba capital

  • Ride the cable car up Sugarloaf Mountain

Itinerary

This itinerary is valid for departures from 01 January 2017 to 31 December 2017. View the itinerary for departures between 01 January 2018 - 31 December 2018

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. After the meeting there will be a table booked in a nearby restaurant if you wish to join your group and local guide for a meal. In Rio de Janeiro we will stay in a great hotel with a rooftop pool in the Flamengo district, close to the beach and the metro station.

Hotel for the night: WIndsor Florida Hotel
Windsor Florida Hotel
Rua Ferreira Viana 81
Flamengo
Rio de Janeiro
Brazil
Tel - +55 21 2195 6800

Activity Approximate Cost
Join your group and your guide for a welcome meal in Rio de Janeiro BRL 50

About Rio De Janeiro:
Rio de Janeiro has to be one of the most beautifully situated cities in the world. The stunning Pão de Açucar (Sugarloaf) Mountain rises up out of Guanabara Bay and the sandy beaches of Ipanema and Copacabana cut beautiful curves in the shoreline, all under the watchful gaze of the iconic Art Deco statue of Christ the Redeemer on Corcovado, one of the New Seven Wonders of the World. This is a city with something for everyone - beaches, history, shopping, culture, fantastic food and amazing nightlife. For amazing views of this spectacular city, take the cable car up to the top of Pão de Açucar, ride the train to
Corcovado or jump on the tram to the historic hillside neighbourhood of Santa Teresa. If you're interested in learning more about Rio and Brazil, there are several fascinating museums in the city and you'll see some fantastic architecture by wandering around the older parts of the city. Kick back and relax on the famous urban beaches, enjoy a beer or caipirinha at one of the many street-side cafes and then when evening comes you can party the night away - Rio has some unbelievable bars and clubs in the buzzing areas
of Lapa and Ipanema. If you need a bit of quiet time to recover, take a walk in the city's wonderful botanical gardens, or escape the city for the day on an excursion to the lush forests of nearby Tijuca National Park.

Rio is particularly famous for its huge annual party - the incredible Rio Carnival. The celebration of Mardi Gras (6 weeks before Easter) is a great Brazilian tradition - the whole city goes wild for a full 7 days in a whirlwind of music and colour. Samba schools compete with ever more awe-inspiring dance displays,
floats and costumes, putting on marathon perfomances in the Sambadrome, 
and street parties are held all over the city.
Accommodation
  • Hotel (1 night)
Meals Included
There are no meals included on this day.
This morning we will go on an orientation walk with our local guide to get to know the local area. Afterwards you may opt to join one of the local 'blocos' (street parades), these are great fun, often very crowded, hot and lively! The local 'cariocas' will be all dressed up, so make sure you bring your glitter!!

Alternatively you may choose to explore the city or go to the beach. This evening you are invited to join us at Rio Scenarium, one of the City's greatest nightspots - it's like an antiques warehouse, music venue, bar and
restaurant all housed in a fantastic colonial mansion. They serve food and cocktails, though we'd recommend eating beforehand as the service can be slow.
 
It costs 65BRL for the entrance, which you will pay at the end, along with any food and drinks that you purchase. A guide will accompany you to the venue, we suggest you make your own way home by taxi when you're ready!

Activity Approximate Cost
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 Included in Kitty
Accommodation
  • Hotel (1 night)
Meals Included
There are no meals included on this day.
Early this morning we will 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). We 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 11 where you have a close up view of the parade and will be able to get great photos of the floats and costumes. 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.

Activity Approximate Cost
Experience the close up view of the fantastic Samba parade in sector 11 of the Sambadrome Included in Kitty
Half day guided tour of Corcovado mountain and the world famous Christ the Redeemer Included in Kitty
Accommodation
  • Hotel (2 nights)
Meals Included
There are no meals included on this day.
Today is a 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 afternoon there's the option to go for a guided visit to the Morrinho Project, a favela community project supported by Dragoman. In the evening we have the chance to put on our most outrageous outfits and head to the Gay Ball!

The balls at Carnival are part of the whole experience and this has been the most popular ball from previous years. If you are going to visit just one ball then this is the one we recommend! Put aside any inhibitions you may have, get your costume sorted - plenty of glitter absolutely necessary - and get dancing
with all the other partygoers. It is a fantastic experience and people are generally very friendly with loads of photo opportunities and some incredible sights! Music is a variety of samba and more modern music so there's something for everyone, and if dancing is really not your thing there is plenty of people watching to do. The venue itself is like a night club rather than a lavish ballroom as the name might suggest, so the glitter and glam is created by the ballgoers rather than by the locality. The ball can startle some people but it really is a memorable event and one which you will talk about long after carnival has been and gone. Make sure you save a bit of energy for this climax to carnival. The ball goes from midnight on Tuesday until the early hours of Wednesday morning and the ticket includes an open bar for water/soft drinks/ beer/caipirinha.

Please note that transport is not included but it is easy to share a taxi there and back with fellow revellers. Please also note that you may be able to find cheaper tickets once you are in Rio. However, previous years tickets have been known to sell out and as a result have changed hands at more than double face
value during the days leading up to the ball. 

Activity Approximate Cost
Visit one of Rio's favelas and a community project we support, Project Morrinho. USD 75
Dress up and go to the Gay Ball, the most colourful of all the balls GBP 80
Accommodation
  • Hotel (1 night)
Meals Included
There are no meals included on this day.
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.

Activity Approximate Cost
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
Find out all about Brazil's fascinating history by visiting the National Historical Museum in the centre of Rio de Janeiro BRL 6
Meals Included
There are no meals included on this day.

Meals

No meals are included on this tour

Transport

Private bus, Metro

Accommodation

Hotel / hostel / cabin / lodge ( 5 nights )

Dates & availability

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Important notes

1. While there will be one leader for every 24 travellers, there may be more than 150 travellers joining you on this experience.
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.
3. Please note the order and days of the activities may change.
4. This trip is run by our experienced overland partner Dragoman.

Essential trip information

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