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Brazilian Carnival

Carnival is popular all over Brazil, but traditionally it is much bigger in the big metropoles like Rio de Janeiro and Sao Paulo and the Northeast of the country. Rio and Sao Paulo have huge Sambadroms - the Stadiums where the Samba Schools perform their shows - with space for more than 20,000 people. The carnival of both cities is famous internationally over TV and the destiny of many foreign tourists.

Insiders and Brazilians sometimes consider the Rio and Sao Paulo Carnival as too touristic though. Locals often prefer the Carnival in Salvador de Bahia in the Northeastern state of Bahia. The party is at least as good if not even bigger and the Carnival itself is often seen as more authentic by the local people. So Salvador is definitely a good recommendation. Careful though, Salvador as well as Rio and Sao Paulo are not really the safest locations, especially at Carnival time. Robberies - armed or not - can happen.

Carnival in the South is usually quiter and smaller. Though also there pretty much every city has its Samba Schools competing in the streets for the title of the best dancers and performance. This is truely a spectacle too and usually safer than in Rio, Sao Paulo or the Northeast. For the greatest party visitors have to go to one of those three though for sure.

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