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Summer is generally considered to include December, January, February and part of March. Rio has daylight savings time from middle of October through middle/late February. During this time, December and January are the hottest months with temperatures going over 104 Deg. F (40 Deg. C). December through April are also the months with the most average rainfall. These rainfalls range from afternoon showers to several consecutive days of rain.
In Rio, summer holidays are considered to begin around Christmas time and last through the end of Carnaval (date varies but generally late February). During this period, Rio runs at a very relaxed pace. Between just before Christmas and lasting through the first week of January, most businesses are closed for the holidays. In Rio, New Years Eve is a big event. Copacabana beach is the location of one of the world's most famous parties and fireworks displays. On Copacabana beach alone, it is customary to see several million revellers gather for this famous event. However, there are also other festivities on other beaches such as the Ipanema beach at midnight.
Carnaval is the second big event of the summer in Rio. It is truly one of the most electric celebrations in all of the world. At this time, Rio is filled with celebrations such as informal parades on the streets, Carnaval balls at night as well as the spectacular Samba School Competition which takes place in the specially built Sambadrome.
During both New Years Eve and Carnaval, the city fills with tourists. However, most locals who can afford it take advantage of the time off and travel outside of the city.
The "winter" months in Rio are considered to be July, August and September. However, during this time It never really gets cold. This period also has the least amount of rainfall of the year. Although it rarely gets cold in Rio, a cloudy or rainy day can be a bit chilly to be out on the beach. On the other hand, a sunny day will be very nice to lounge on the beach and take in the sun and terrific scenery. For this reason, the beach is really an option all year long in Rio. During this time of the year, average high temperatures are around 75 Deg. F (25 Deg. C).