The biggest Carnival to date?
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Rio de Janeiro’s Carnival festival, which takes place on the five days preceding Ash Wednesday, marking the beginning of Lent, is the world’s largest and most famous Carnival, attracting visitors from all over the globe and filling the streets with an estimated two million people every day.
Traditionally a religious event, Carnival historically has been seen as a final party for consuming all the rich foods and wine before the fasting, frugality and religious reflection of Lent. As 2014 marks the first of two very important years for Brazil – with the World Cup starting June 2014 and the Summer Olympics in August 2016 – BBC Travel caught up with some of the city’s largest and most popular samba schools as they prepare for what may be the biggest Rio Carnival to date.
Pictured here, the Salgueiro samba school showcases one of their costumes during an official practice at the Sambadrome Marquês de Sapucaí, a stadium constructed to host the samba schools’ annual parade with a 700m parade runway and tiered seating for 90,000 people. (Phil Clarke-Hill)
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