The Sambadromo: History, tips and directions
Inaugurated in 1984 and conceived by the renowned Brazilian architect Oscar Niemeyer,
the Marquês de Sapucaí Sambadrome is the stage for the annual parades of the Samba Schools.
Today, it also hosts large events - such as shows and festivals - outside the carnival season.
Most recently, it also hosted the archery competition during the Rio 2016 Olympics.
- For the odd-numbered sectors, the best ways to access the Sambadrome are by taxi or subway (Estação Centra/Central Station).
- For the even-numbered sectors, it is recommended to take the subway to the Praça Onze station.
- It's not recommended to go by car because there's no parking in the area.
- Municipal buses are also not recommended because they are not safe on Carnוval nights.
Shuttle Transfers are also available from Rio Tickets leaving from Copacabana and Ipanema.
Reserve your transfer now and save yourself the hassle on the night of the party! Learn more by clicking here.
Where to sit
The stadium was built especially for this parade, which starts between sectors 2 and 3 and ends between sectors 12 and 13.
The even and odd-numbered sectors are parallel to each other and each pair has the same view and price (eg.: 3 and 4, 5 and 6, etc.).
The more central the view, the more expensive the tickets.
Each school has 80 minutes to cross the 800 meters of the runway, with their allegorical floats with heights up to 4.5 meters and more than 3500 people parading.
Here are important information about the sectors:
1. JUDGES BOOTHS
There are two booths, one between sectors 3 and 5, and another between 11 and 13. Therefore, the parade can be enjoyed for a slightly longer time when sitting near the booths of the judges. You can also get a great view of the dance of the couple Porta-Bandeira and Mestre-Sala.
2. RECUO DA BATERIA
The moment in which the drums' section retreats and lets the rest of the paraders pass. It is possible to keep appreciating the samba while that happens, between sectors 9 and 11.
3. ASSIGNED SEATS
In Sector 9 - the most costly - all seats are numbered and can be reserved individually.
Although all other sectors are considered "free seating," most people end up dancing all night rather than sitting down.
4. VIP LOUNGES
The VIP Lounges between every two sectors and beneath some of them, come with exclusive treats to enjoy the Parade in the best way.
Find out more about these luxury lounges here.
5. SECTORS 4 AND 5
Close to the center and near the Jurors' Booth.
The sectors are situated at the beginning of the runway, where you can share the enthusiasm and anxiety of the sambistas.
6. SECTORS 6 AND 7
Very popular seats.
Wide range of visibility, since they are right in the middle of the runway.
7. SECTORS 8 AND 9
Some of the best seats in the party.
Sector 9 is the only one with assigned seats, but the two sectors share the same view. You can come and go without worries.
8. SECTORS 10 AND 11
Still very good, but these sectors are towards end of the parade. With the retreat of the drums' section, these sectors are particularly good to enjoy the samba music and they are close to the the last Judges booth.
9. SECTORS 12 AND 13 - FRONT SEATS
Seats are at the level of the runway.
Prices are more affordable, but not the best view.
10. SECTORS 12 AND 13 - GRAND STAND
Completely obstructed view of the parade.
Rio Tickets doesn't sell tickets to these sectors because we only want the best experience for you!
11. FRONT BOX SEATS
At the front of each sector are the frisas (front box seats), the best way to experience the Sambadrome. They are divided in 4 lines: A, B, C and D, being A the very close seats, at the same level of the Samba Avenue.
Each box can hold up to 6 people, who are as close as possible to the parade. Important to say: the prices are per person, not for Front Box. Minimum of two people per order to reserve seating.
- Before the show - Always leave well in advance, as the streets become crowded during Carnaval.
- Rio Tickets offers a package with transfers and Parade tickets that include round-trip tickets to the Sambadrome.
Don't try to buy tickets at the last possible minute, since the box office usually closes on the nights of the Parades.
Plan the purchase several months in advance.
- Avoid buying tickets from scalpers, as there are various risks involved and tickets may be fake.
- Inside the Sambadrome everything is totally safe.
- The experience of the Parades is kid-friendly and many parents have a blast taking their little ones to the event.
If you are not sure which sector to purchase, contact one of our Carnaval specialists.