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Carnaval in South America

Carnaval, also called carnival, is celebrated in many places throughout South America. Carnaval, as spelled in Portuguese, is a 4-day celebration. It starts on Saturday and ends on Fat Tuesday (Mardi-Gras). Dates change every year, but it's always a noisy, energetic celebration of music and dance and exhibitions.

Affordable Accommodation for Carnaval in Rio
Hostel options for Carnaval in Rio

Barranquilla’s Carnival an event to remember
Billed as the second largest carnival in South America, the grand parade of Barranquilla’s carnival has it all - group after group of folkloric dancers and singers wearing colorful costumes; very unique floats (or carriages as the locals call them); and finally, a cast of characters that may be unmatched anywhere in the world.

Carnaval in Bolivia
Bolivia's carnaval activities take place mainly in Oruro, Santa Cruz, Tarija and La Paz and generally have a more religious content. The devil dance in Oruro is traditional and unforgettable. You'll want to see this one!

Carnaval in Barranquilla, Colombia
Rather than samba, salsa resounds through the streets of Barranquilla when parades and music gather thousands together to frolic until they drop.

Carnaval in Venezuela
Venezuela celebrates the carnaval, or carnival, festivities with dance, music, balloons, family festivities, lavish costumes and parades and a great deal of joy.

Carnaval came to South America from Europe as celebrations before the beginning of the forty day Lenten season of fasting and prayer. These late winter celebrations in Europe gave root to the high-summer frenzy of carnaval in South America.

Carnaval Samba Parade in Rio de Janeiro Photo Gallery
"Carnaval in Rio is one of the greatest shows on earth, and the annual Samba Parade at the Sambodromo is the most festive and colorful of all."

Carnaval - Brazil's biggest party
The four days and nights of carnaval in Rio de Janeiro are the lavish self-indulgent anything-goes exotic exhibitionist spectacle the world sees. They are the result of year-long planning organizing practicing and fantasies - and a lot of hard work - but Rio isn't the only place in Brazil to celebrate.

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