Brazil is Pumped to Have More Tourists Coming for Carnaval Than Ever!


NEW YORK, February 12, 2015- Last year Brazil experienced record-breaking results in tourism numbers, including over one million visitors from 203 countries during the 2014 FIFA World Cup. With the Carnival 2015 celebrations currently underway, Brazil is igniting excitement among revelers for Rio’s 450th Anniversary and the Rio 2016 Olympics. But more importantly, it is starting off the year with strong increases in hotel and tourism numbers.


Carnival is notoriously known as the “world’s biggest festival”, full of culture, dance, food, samba, parades and music. This year’s event is promising an unforgettable celebration to keep the momentum going well into Rio 2016. According to the Minister of Tourism, Vinicius Lages, “Carnival is one of the events that shape the tourist identity of Brazil. It is an extremely strategic party because it places us in an outstanding position in the world, not only as organizers of major events, but mainly by the enchantment of a legitimate celebration of Brazilian culture.” Mr. Lages continues, “an experiment originally ours only, you can only live here – and this is a highly competitive attribute.”

Brazil Carnival 2015 By the Numbers

Although carnival is celebrated in almost every city in Brazil, four cities will take center stage as the most sought after destinations by tourists: Rio de Janeiro, São Paulo, Salvador, and Recife. The Ministry of Tourism has predicted 6.8 million tourists will circulate throughout Brazil during the carnival period (from February 13 to 17), generating a growth of USD $2.4 billion (R$ 6.6 billion) in the Brazilian Economy.

Rio de Janeiro. An estimated total of 977,000 tourists will be joining local revelers to reach a total of nearly 5 million festival goers expected to attend 2015 Rio de Janeiro Carnaval. It is evident that the city party popularity continues to exponentially grow each year. The event never ceases to amaze and entertain both visitors and locals alike with its 456 blocks parties, parades and additional festivities, such as the King Momo, who is considered to be the king of carnivals, and the starter of the Festivities. According to the Secretary of Tourism of Rio de Janeiro, the event this year will generate a profit of USD $431.9 million (R$1.2 billion) from travelers’ spending. When taking into consideration nearby cities, such as Buzios, Cabo Frio, Petropolis, Angra dos Reis and Paraty, the Ministry of Tourism expects Carnival to attract a total of 1.3 million tourists to Rio’s State.  According to the Brazilian Association of the Hospitality Industry (ABIH), hotels in the city of Rio de Janeiro are expected to be at 85-90% occupancy.

São Paulo. Similar to Rio de Janeiro, São Paulo welcomes hundreds of thousand of visitors every year. These visitors will follow the parades at the Anhembi Sambodromo and the street parties. The Anhembi Sambodromo is the largest outdoors event venue in São Paulo designed by the great Brazilian architect Oscar Niemeyer. It is here where the top samba schools congregate to compete for the grand honor of winning the Carnaval championship title. São Paulo state expects to welcome 989,000 people during the 5 days of party generating a profit of USD $349.3 million (R$ 970.4 million). As a result of last year’s Carnival, São Paulo exceeded its public record of average tourists’ stay from 2.4 days to 4.4 days.

Recife. For Brazilians, Recife is one of the top Carnavals to attend, and the city’s population actually drastically increases from 1,297,000 residents to more than two million people in celebration of the festival.  The city has its own distinctive rhythm with the “Frevo” and “Maracatu drums”, an Afro-Brazilian performance.  The entire area of Recife (including the surrounding cities of Olinda, Cabo de Santo Agostinho and Porto de Galinhas) is expected to attract an estimated 871,000 – 900,000 tourists and generate a local economic impact of USD $308.8 million (R $858 million). The occupancy rate of hotels in Recife, for carnival, is already at 87%, with an estimated reach of 90% in the coming days.

Salvador. The capital of Bahia proves to be another favorite destination by tourists. The city has an estimated 4 million festival attendees during carnival and was recognized by the Guinness Book of Records as the biggest street party in the world. According to estimates by the State Secretary of Tourism, during Carnival 2014, Brazilian and foreign visitors contributed US$ 176 million in the city of Salvador alone, with 550,000 tourists passing through the city in the days preceding Ash Wednesday. If we include the surrounding cities of Porto Seguro, Trancoso, Arraial D’Ajuda and Sauipe, the number jumps to 707,000 tourists, with an economic impact of USD $251 million (R$697 million). Salvador’s hotel occupancy is expected to exceed 85% of its hotel accommodations.

About Brazil Tourism:

With its spectacular beaches, lush rainforests, rich culture, exotic cuisine and exciting nightlife, Brazil is one of the most compelling countries to visit today. Travelers are invited to explore Brazil’s incredible geographical diversity – from the wetlands to the beaches. With a beautiful, tropical climate, Brazil is an easily accessible, exotic get-away for couples, families and business travelers.

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