Stepped up our party game, fam!
Carnival happens around the last week of Feb and/or first week of March all across Atlantic-facing countries in the western hemisphere. And the Carnivals in Brazil are the most epic. Originating in the northeast part of the country, in the state of Bahia, where the music is ingrained into the culture, it spread across the country. Depending on your preference - everything goes vs. you just there for the culture - there's a Carnival for you. On the advice of several Brasilian friends, we went to Rio de Janeiro, which was bananas because of the unbelievable number of people there that time of year and of course, those beaches. Although we could have booked a good hotel a year in advance, I wanted that authentic experience, so I reached out to my homies, and they hooked it up! We rented a room with them, they showed us where to eat, how to party, and how to survive. (For example, we had no idea that the partying is literally 24 hours a day and most restaurants are closed, so if you don't stock up with food the week prior and carry it around with you everywhere, the only substance available to you for nutrition is beer.) This experience was absolutely worth some of the sacrifices we had to make in comfort, but we will never forget it.