He Said/She Said: Carnival Instant Replay

He Said/She Said: Carnival Instant Replay

Carnival in Rio de Janeiro.  For the uninitiated it’s known as the world’s biggest party.  For those who have lived it there’s no way to explain it.  Dozens of major streets closed for parties with thousands of bands playing filled with millions of people partying while drinking tens of millions of beers.  Carnival is crazy.

As an Argentinian we met at 4AM said to us, “I came last year and it was so crazy I had to come again with my friends.”  Next time we go we’ll do the same and bring friends because there will be a next time…here’s why.

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HE SAID…

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A five-day adventure like Carnival is hard to sum up. With days and nights filled with the unexpected it’s hard to remember exactly what happened, so let’s review the tape.  Here’s the official replay of my Carnival 2013:

With temperatures around 90 degrees through the night, $1.50 ice-cold beers are an easy way too cool off…


Number one thing I love about Carnival?  It’s everything “freedom-loving” Americans have outlawed.  Imagine if nine drunken, tu-tu clad, men jumped on a city truck and used it as a dance platform in your city…in Rio, the driver just shook his head and kept on driving with them aboard…

Carnival forces you to confront life’s most difficult questions.  You’ll find yourself asking such things as “is one bottle of vodka enough for two people?”  Not at Carnival it isn’t.  Contrary to what a drunken man at the grocery store said, the $3 bottle of vodka will not kill you…


Phew!  So this is why my lips and fingers smelled like condoms! It could have been much, much, worse…


Look what I got!  At the end of the Sambadrome’s all-night samba parade some dancers leave their costumes.  I snagged the hat of one of the best costumes.  There were lots of jealous looks on the metro as I rode home with my headdress.

Overall it was an awesome experience, something that requires more space to explain, but as you can see from the replay, Carnival is an event that doesn’t disappoint…but first I need to rest after two sleepless nights.

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SHE SAID…

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Carnival in Rio is something that has to be experienced to be understood, seen to be believed.  However, with so many things in life pictures don’t do it justice.  I would need to be equipped with a video camera complete with smell-o-vision and sensory feelers built in to even try to describe it.  You just have to go, it will blow your mind!

Everyone claims that the party is in the street, so we spent much of our time at Blocos (massive street parties) taking in the samba music.  My favorite was the Sargent Pimento Bloco, featuring a band that has taken all of the best Beatles hits and set them to a samba beat, amazing!

While the Blocos are crazy, the highlight for me was our all-night samba party in the Sambadrome. The thumping samba beat drives the crowd wild as the most outlandish and over the top floats make their way down the middle of the sambadrome escorted by glitter encrusted, mostly naked women.

As I mentioned in my Carnival Expectations post one of the things I was most looking forward to at Carnival were the crowds of people.  And beautiful people they were…

Long story short, you have to experience it for yourself, start planning now for 2014.  We’ll see you there!

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About the Author

LOCAVORista: A curious adventurer exploring the culinary delights and local traditions around the world. Currently on a 3 year round-the-world trip discovering amazing cultures, must-eats and off-the-beaten-track destinations.

About the Author
LOCAVORista: A curious adventurer exploring the culinary delights and local traditions around the world. Currently on a 3 year round-the-world trip discovering amazing cultures, must-eats and off-the-beaten-track destinations.
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