Rio Carnival Champions Parade

After the Parade Results on Ash Wednesday, the top 6 Samba Groups will parade again 3 days later, on Saturday, at the Sambadrome, for the so called Champions Parade.

Is the Champions´ Parade Weekend worth it ?

Definitely YES!!!

Even though officially Carnival ends on Ash Wednesday, the parties in Rio de Janeiro won’t stop until the following Sunday.

After the Parade Results on Ash Wednesday, the top 6 Samba Groups will parade again 3 days later, on Saturday, at the Sambadrome, for the so called Champions´ Parade.

The Champions’ Parade Weekend is an excellent opportunity for the budget conscious traveler to save a lot, and still enjoy the Carnival Parade and Street Parties with the same vibe and energy as during the Carnival Holiday that just happened the week before, after all Carnival ends on Wednesday only in the Calendar, not for Brazilians who are saying good-bye to summer vacations and want to enjoy until the last minute before going back to reality the next Monday. Many people say the New Year in Brazil starts that Monday after the Carnival weekend, when the school year starts and people go back to their routine after summer vacations.

Tickets for the Champion’s parade are also cheaper and some people actually prefer watching the Champion’s parade because you get to watch the Top 6 Samba Groups out of 12 from the Special Group.

Here are some reasons why you should definitely consider travelling to Rio during the Champion´s Parade Weekend.

1. Post-Carnival Street Parties in Rio

Many of the most traditional Street Parties (Blocos) in Rio will play again on the Champions´ Parade weekend. There are still hundreds of parties taking place all over the city, with a highlight to Monobloco that gathers more than 500.000 people downtown on the last Sunday of celebrations.

2. Hotel Prices 

Many Hotels in Rio (not all of them) start charging regular rates after Ash Wednesday. That means you will not have to pay for a Hotel Special Holiday Package that during Carnival cost up to 500% more expensive.

3. The Atmosphere

The Atmosphere of the Champion´s parade is as sensational as during the Oficial Parade that took place the weekend before. Carnival parades at the Sambadrome are highly competitive, and the Champions’ Parade exudes the relaxed and upbeat atmosphere of thousands of people past the Ash Wednesday hurdle, when the tense (and often tearful or heatedly contentious) point-counting takes place.

4. Parade Tickets Price

It doesn’t hurt that tickets to the “Desfile das Campeãs”, also known as Sábado das Campeãs (the Champions’ Saturday), are more affordable than the ones on the weekend before.

5. The Audience

Besides parade participants themselves, samba schools have loyal followers who keep up with their every movement, cheer for them like sports fans, and come in throngs to the Winners’ Parade to celebrate their outstanding performance.

Because the parade also closes the Carnival season at the Sambódromo, there’s a pervasive feel of last hurrah for Rio residents and tourists alike.

All 90.000 Champions´ Parade Tickets get sold as fast as the Carnival Parade.

6. The Pride

A concern that the Champions’ Parade might have a somewhat lackluster feel is quickly dismissed when you learn more about what Carnival means to samba schools – and what each samba school means to its members.

A samba school tugs at its members’ heartstrings much in the same way sports loyalty does. Earning the honor of being in the Winners’ Parade is something each samba school values very highly. A shoddy approach to the parade is completely out of the question. Everyone knows, and wants to show you and make sure you agree, that they deserve to be back.

The floats, the creative costumes, the gung-ho drummers and passistas (dancers), the destaques, or featured paraders, in their skimpy and/or outrageously luxurious costumes – they are all there.

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