Brazil, homeland to some of the world's top models and Victoria's Secret angels, prepares for it's most famous party which kicks off on Friday – carnival.
One of the world's biggest street parties, carnival is a fabulous five-day stint when the entire country enters a collective state of dance, music and fancy dress, with plumed headdresses, teams of dancers and head-to-toe gilded supermodels clad in sequins and body paint decorating Brazil's streets.
The most glitzy of them all, in Rio de Janeiro, draws millions of Brazilians and hundreds thousands of tourists from all over the world for the fun, sun and sequins, which marks the beginning of lent and embraces the Rio summer at its peak.
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With their long limbs, incredibly toned stomachs and exotic features, it's no wonder Brazilian beauties such as Gisele Bundchen, Adriana Lima and Alessandra Ambrosio have become supermodels. And it's only natural that the stunning angels don extravagant costumes – both on and off the catwalk – to show support for their home country's celebrations, which take a whole year to prepare.
Alessandra Ambrosio – who after 11 years of being a Victoria's Secret angel, was given the honour of showcasing this year's Fantasy Bra worth $2.5 million – recently gave us a glimpse of what to expect this year in Brazil's party extravaganza when she took part in the dazzling closing ceremony of the Olympic Games.
The celebration took on a Brazilian twist for the handover of the torch, culminating in authentic carnival fashion, featuring samba dancers, Capoeira artists, singers and rappers to welcome the world to their home country in 2016.
But all eyes will be on Brazil's sunny shores long before that, thanks to carnival, when samba schools perform along the kilometre-long strip of the Sambodromo.
Stunning supermodel Gisele gave key advice on Tuesday when she tweeted fans, saying "Dance like no one is watching." And she certainly did that along Rio's famous parade when stole the limelight in a gold minidress, dancing atop a float. She showed off her samba moves dressed as the ancient Greek sculpture Venus de Milo in the Vila Isabel parade troupe.
She was of course one of the festival's highlights, which attracts about three quarters of a million visitors, and transforms the city into a fantasy land of moving stage sets with live bands that project the music and beat of the drums for all to enjoy.
And the colourful spectacle attracts a starry crowd. Jennifer Lopez and her boyfriend Caspar Smart partied there last year, when the On the Floor singer embodied casual chic with a red sequinned top as she sat in the VIP box and Caspar snapped pictures of the action.
Revealing that this was her first ever carnival, J Lo tweeted fans: "Just landed in Rio!!! Hello everyone!! My first time here during carnival!!!!"
And another Victoria's Secret angel and Brazilian bombshell, Camila Alves, took her husband Matthew McConaughey to Rio in 2009, where they danced to the sound of drums from the side lines.
Let's see who heads to Rio to party in style this year...