Brazil Travel

Carnival Sambadromo

The Sambadrome in its full glory during Carnival After months of rehearsals, over fifteen samba schools come together to perform in the Sambodromo, a street with levels created specifically for the samba parade. One look at the parade and the eye is greeted with sparkle, color, and movement, inviting the over 30,000 crowd of people into a passion of celebration. Each school has ninety minutes to perform, accompanied by a puxador or interpreter who begins the samba. Voices in the crowd and percussion drums (over 300 per samba school) add to the electrifying beats of music.

Before the Sambodrome, the city would be in disarray as bleachers were constructed for the parade and then deconstructed once the parade was finished. In 1983, the current Governor Leonel Brizola initiated a project to build the Sambodrome. With Brazil's well-known architect Niemeyer on board, the design and construction of the venue took four months. The Sambodrome opened on March 2, 1984 on the street Marques de Sapucai, the historical birth site of the samba.

The actual configuration of the Sambodrome surrounds the white painted Av. Marques de Sapucai. Concrete structures run up and down the sides of the street which is known as the passarela or the samba runway. The end of the Sambodrome is Apotheosis Square, complete with an enormous M, reminiscent of the original winner of the Samba Parade Mangueira. A map of the Sambadrome is at the bottom of this page.
Seat Types in the Sambadrome

Food and Drinks in the Sambadromo
If you get a little hungry or thirsty while participating in all the action, a large food area can be found behind Sector 11. Also, everyone has access to the promenade (located behind the Sambodrome) - an area complete with food, drink, restrooms, and stands. The variety of provisions is plentiful including ice cream, local favorites, and all types of drinks. Further, this is the place to pick up your official Sambodrome sounvenir.

When the Sambodrome is not hosting the renowned Samba Parade, the space is used by local schools, performers and musicians. The beauty of the venue is its ability to become part of the culture year-round, transforming to the center of celebration once Carnival ensues.

Transportation to Sambadromo
To get to the Sambodromo, take a taxi from your hotel, or take the metro which runs uninterrupted throughout Carnival. For more information, visit the transportation section.
Transportation during Carnival

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