• Posted:Thursday, February 5, 2015
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The top 10 sights and sounds you should take in during the Rio Festival 2015

The top 10 sights and sounds you should take in during the Rio Festival 2015

World Cup matches were held here in 2014 and the Olympics will be arriving in 2016, but one event that is in the diary every year is the Rio Carnival. This is the one event of the year when all people from different backgrounds and cultures are one and celebrate through dance and music. If you are lucky enough to be in Rio for the carnival make sure you take advantage of what's around you:

1. Get in touch with your inner dancing queen

Carnival Rio de Janeiro Brazil

The Rio Carnival is all about music and dancing. Whether you have two left feet or are a dancing queen, shake what you have and enjoy the atmosphere.

2. Enjoy the alternative music

Music at Rio Carnival Brazil

You may usually listen to rock, pop or dance music but for Carnival it will be totally different. Listen to the sounds of local culture with Latin, African, Indian and European ringing in your ears. You'll be glad you did.

3. Try all the cuisine on offer

Food Rio de Janeiro Brazil

The Carnival runs for five days in the lead up to 'Lent' for Brazilians so they can enjoy all the food and excitement before this period of abstinence. So take advantage of the many different types of food which will be on offer.

4. Wear something colourful

Colourful clothes at Rio Carnival Brazil

This five day event gives everyone a chance to be someone different for a short period of time. Men dress as women, women dress as men, those who dress in black every day suddenly wear bright colours. Do the same - be someone different for a day (or five).

5. Get a ticket for the Sambadrome

Sambadrome Rio Brazil

Even though these can be hard to get hold of, they are worth it to get a feel for the Carnival atmosphere and where the samba parade competitions take place. Booking early is essential as tickets start at $55 so getting them quick is a must.

6. Sun yourself on Copacobana or Ipanema beaches

Beach Rio Brazil

With bands playing in the afternoon you can sun yourself while listening to the local tunes. This will help you relax before partying at the many street carnivals later on in the evening.

7. Learn to sing and dance the samba

Samba lesson Rio Brazil

During the festival, and even in the lead up to it, many samba schools open their dance halls to everyone. So whether you want to watch others or take part yourself you will be able then to show off your new dance moves or singing skills during the Carnival.

8. Visit the favelas

Favela Rio Brazil

This is where many of the poorer people of the city live and are also known as slums. Many of those taking part in the Carnival are from the favelas but do go with a tour so you are taken in a safe way with people who know the area.

9. Christ the Redeemer statue

Christ the Redeemer statue Rio de Janeiro Brazil

Even though you're there for the Carnival don't miss out on the sights that this great city has. The Christ the Redeemer statue is hard to miss standing 30 metres on top of Mount Corcodova.

10. Choose a mountain - or all three

Sugar Loaf Mountain Rio de Janeiro Brazil

There are three mountains you will see on arrival to Rio. Mount Corcovado, the more well-known Sugarloaf mountain and the Two Brothers. Make sure you have hiking boots if you're climbing and be safe. Alternatively a cable car is also available if you're feeling a little worse for wear after last night's party.

Siobhan Maguire is a budding journalist studying at the University of Salford in Manchester. A well-seasoned traveller, she blogs at A Girl Gets on a Bus, and you can follow her Twitter here. Thanks to Leandro Neumann Ciuffo, Frank Kovalchek, Lima Pix, sandy marle, dany13, Christian Haugen and LASZLO ILYES for the excellent pictures from Flickr. Please note they were under Creative Commons Licence at time of publishing.

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