Brazil is synonymous with spectacular natural wonders. Scenic mountains, waterfalls, and sparkling beaches together enhance the list and make Brazil a wonderland for all. But along with this natural beauty, Brazil is adorned with a cultural facet too. The rich traditions, rituals, and culture enhance the vibe of the place and make people wonder. To experience the vibe of the local culture and traditions, the best way is to witness and rejoice their traditional festivals. The popular Brazil festivals display the colourful side of the country and augment its significance to everyone.
8 Popular Festivals In Brazil
Read below to know about the charming Brazil festivals and rejoice them with full passion and vigour.
Cultural Festivals In Brazil
- Carnival- Rio de Generio
- Oktoberfest, Blumenau
- Semana Santa, Ouro Preto.
- Bonfim Stairs Washing, Salvador
- Parintins Folklore Festival
- Festival de Cachaça
Music Festivals In Brazil
- Lollapalooza, São Paulo
- Amazonas Festival of Opera, Manaus.
Cultural Festivals In Brazil
1. Carnival- The Most Vibrant Festival
Carnival is certainly one of the largest, oldest and most popular Brazil festivals, celebrated primarily in Rio-de-Generio. Carnival is also celebrated in other Brazilian cities like Salvador and Recife. The first celebration of carnival dates back to 1830 as an extension of the Portuguese custom of rejoicing and indulging on the day before the Lent period commences. Showcasing colourful street parades, samba dance by the locals in flashy attires and street parties called blocos, the week-long carnival makes everyone rejoice, enjoy and tap their feet with local music. There are healthy samba dance competitions. The streets are decorated colourfully and everyone be it locals or tourists come out in most vibrant dresses and delight their heart and soul with the festival vibe.
Location: Rio de Generio
Date: 21st Feb -26th Feb 2020
2. Festival de Cachaça- Drink, Dance & Be Merry
Festival de Cachaça is dedicated to the national liquor; cachaça, made from sugarcane. Popular as Festival de Pinga, this festival is celebrated with samba performances, forro, and reggae. Food trucks are stationed from where one can taste authentic local food and shops are installed selling typical Paraty handicrafts and souvenirs. This festival is a great opportunity to taste and rejoice various varieties of cachaça.
Date: 21st Feb -26th Feb 2020
3. Oktoberfest- For The Beer-Loving Folks
Originally a German festival, Octoberfest is one of the popular beer festivals in Brazil. Celebrated in October every year, people taste and enjoy various samples of beer and authentic German delicacies. People dress up in traditional costumes, enjoy dancing and singing and take part in street parades and parties. The key feature of this Octoberfest is a glamorous beauty pageant where the winner is crowned as Queen of Octoberfest and the runner up as Princess of Octoberfest.
Date: 7th-25th October 2020
4. Semana Santa- The Holy Week Celebration
Celebrated on the holy week, Semana Santa is Easter in Brazil. With the world’s largest Catholic population, certainly, it is one of the most important Brazil festivals that also marks the beginning of the autumn season in the country. Semana Santa is celebrated across the country but the most vibrant and colourful celebration is experienced at Ouro Preto. With religious services all around, the week-long Semana Santa is rejoiced by visiting near and dear ones, exchanging greetings, good wishes nests with eggs and chocolates. The streets are decorated with carpet of brightly coloured flowers, sand, and sawdust to create beautiful designs and themes. The children dress up in vibrant dresses and sing religious songs that enhance the festive vibe of the city.
Location: Ouro Preto
Date: 5th April- 11th April 2020
5. Bonfim Stairs Washing- A Unique Celebration
Popular as Lavagem das Escadarias do Bonfim or Lavagem do Bonfim, this unique and interesting festival is celebrated in the Brazilian state of Salvador. The festival started in 1754. This is another very popular festival in Brazil, after the carnival. Everyone dressed in sparkling white walks and gathered in front of Igreja do Senhor do Bonfim or Senhor do Bonfim Church. As a part of the heritage, the local Baianas womenfolk pour scented water on the steps of the church and people’s heads for purification and chant for hope and faith. Once done, the Baianas meet with each other and feast over their traditional food- acaraje. This is a form of bean dumpling, stuffed with vatapa made of shrimp, peanuts and coconut milk and fried in dende oil.
Date: 17th Jan 2021
6. Parintins Folklore Festival- The Colourful Folk Carnival
This is the yearly festival of the Parintins region and celebrated over 3 days. The main highlight of the festival is the portrayal of the legendary story of resurrected ox through folk music, folk dance, and vibrant street parades. Also known as Festival do Boi Bumba or Bumba Meu Boi, this festival showcases the folk traditions and culture of the Amazonas. The striking feature which makes Parintins Folklore Festival stand out from the rest of the Brazil festivals is the healthy yet intriguing competition of storytelling between two teams Garantido and Caprichoso.
Location: Parintins, Amazonas
Date: 27th June- 28th June
Brazil is known for so many vibrant music festivals and Lollapalooza is surely one of them. Organised at Autódromo de Interlagos in São Paulo, this music carnival showcases talents from all over the world including local music maestros. Presenting fascinating performances by renowned artists as well as budding talents, Lollapalooza not only delights the music enthusiasts but every kind of person.
Location: São Paulo
Date: 3rd April- 5th April 2020
8. Amazonas Festival of Opera
Amazonas Festival of Opera is a widely honoured music feast in the Manaus region of Brazil. Showcasing eminent compositions of Ernani Aguiar, Peter Grimes, Jean Baptiste and a special tribute to Ludwig van Beethoven, Amazonas Festival of Opera runs for three weeks attracting music and opera lovers from various corners of the world. If you are shortlisting the must-attend music festivals of Brazil, this one should be the top priority.
Date: 18th April – 7th June 2020
Are you excited and ready to be part of these enchanting Brazil festivals? I am sure you are. Reflecting the country’s culture, traditions and heritage attracts every local and traveller alike. Plan a vacation to Brazil and see if you can experience a few from this recommended list.
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Frequently Asked Questions About Brazil Festivals
A. The most popular and biggest festival in Brazil is the Carnival.
A. The popular food festivals in Brazil are The Brazilian Beer Festival, Bauernfest, and Comida de Buteco Festival.
A. Carnival in Rio de Janeiro is the oldest festival in brazil.
A. The indigenous tribes of Brazil are Xingu, Terena, Tupi, and Apiaca.
A. Parintins Folklore Festival is the most popular tribal festival in Brazil which is observed in the Brazilian Amazon region.
A. The traditional Brazilian food is Picanha, Moqueca, Feijoada, Vatapá, Brigadeiros, and Acarajé.
A. Semana Santa is celebrated during the holy week of October.
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