World's Biggest Carnival Kicks Off In Rio After Two Years Of COVID Crackdown

Tyler Durden's Photo
by Tyler Durden
Friday, Apr 22, 2022 - 02:00 AM

After two years of cancelations due to COVID-19, Rio de Janeiro held its famed carnival on Wednesday night, offering guests a glittering spectacle with parades filled with floats, dancers, musicians, and partygoers.

"I proudly announce the greatest show on Earth is back – Long live, carnival," Rio de Janeiro's Mayor Eduardo Paes told a massive crowd at City Hall. 

The Rio de Janeiro Carnival is considered one of the largest in the world. Before the pandemic, more than seven million people were partying in the streets, according to AP's numbers. The festival is held every year before Lent and first began in 1723. However, this year, the carnival was postponed from Feb. 24 to this week due to the spread of the Omicron variant. 

Canceled for two years because of surging COVID infections and deaths in Brazil, the massive carnival was only canceled for two other periods, between 1915–18 and 1940–45. 

Here are some of the scenes from the Sambadrome, a stadium built for the carnival. 

Here's what's happening on Sambadrome's ground floor. 

A lot of dancing...  

AP quoted Mayor Paes as saying City Hall did not authorize street parties, but he'll refrain from deploying the police. 

"City Hall won't impede people from being in public spaces, from celebrating, but it's impossible that it happen at such (large) size," he said. 

Rio hotels are at 85% occupancy this week as a lot of post-pandemic partying is underway. The biggest party on Earth is expected to last through the end of the month.