Despite its original religious beginnings, the carnival can hardly be described as a solemn affair,
and it shares its excessive nature with similar European celebrations and Mardi Gras,
where the festivals are an opportunity for final indulgence before lent itself.
It is likely that these celebrations can be traced back to older pagan feasts celebrating the arrival of spring, though with Brazil being in the Southern hemisphere.
The most eye-catching celebrations take place in Rio de Janeiro with the main parade starting on Sunday at Sambodromo, where the samba schools compete to elect the 5 best of the year!
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