The Brazilian Carnival (Carnaval in Portuguese) is an annual festival held 40 days before Easter marking the beginning of Lent. During Lent, Roman Catholics are supposed to abstain from all bodily pleasures, including the consumption of meat. The carnival, celebrated as a profane event and believed to have its origins in the pagan Saturnalia, can be considered an act of farewell to the pleasures of the flesh.
Each year the amazing carnival parades at the Sambadrome, Rio de Janeiro, attract many thousands of Brazilians and foreign tourists.
Rio de Janeiro in Brazil is now one the the most popular travel destination in South America. Not surprisingly, considering the excellent beaches at Ipanema and Copacabana, luxury hotels near these beaches, the wild nightlife and beautiful women.