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
Countries
Brazil
Themes
Festivals and Events
Code
GDSB
Physical rating
Cultural rating
Ages
Min 18
Group size
Min 4 Max 22
Carbon offset
182kg pp per trip


Highlights

  • 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

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.

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!

The afternoon will be free time to explore the city.

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
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.

INCLUDED 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

Experience the close up view of the fantastic Samba parade in sector 11 of the Sambadrome
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 a guided visit to Pão de Açúcar (Sugarloaf Mountain), rising almost 400 metres above the harbour. We 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 which means you will have the full excitement and exhilaration of watching the opening performance of a school’s 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.

INCLUDED ACTIVITIES
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)

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
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 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 ticket to the Gay Ball includes the entrance, open bar and assorted finger food.

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

Get dressed up in your most extravagant outfit and head out to the Gay Ball, the most colourful and exhuberant 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
Explore the stunning natural Atlanic rainforest of Tijuca, the largest urban forest in the world : Free

Find out all about Brazil's fascinating history by visiting the National Historical Museum in the centre of Rio de Janeiro : BRL 6

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

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

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

Visit the iconic Escadaria Selaron, a colourful tiled staircase lovingly created by local resident Jorge Selaron : Free
View trip notes to read full itinerary

Inclusions

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

Dates

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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.

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 Original trips score an average of 3 out of 5 based on 2 reviews in the last year.

Rio Carnival Package Original , February 2015