The gigantic Maracanã Stadium (Estádio Jornalista Mário Filho) is one of the most iconic soccer temples in South America, built to open the 1950 World Cup. The site holds the record for the largest attendance at a World Cup Final thanks to the 199,854 paying spectators who crammed into the stadium in 1950 and also hosted the FIFA World Cup Final again in 2014 and the Rio Olympic Games in 2016. Officially known as Mário Filho Stadium but called Maracanã after the small river that runs alongside it, the arena is now a historical site dedicated to its former use as a world-class arena and event venue.
Many half- and full-day Rio de Janeiro city tours include Maracanã as a drive-by feature or photo op. And while the stadium no longer offers the intense football experience native to Brazil, the sports museum inside the stadium offers exhibits featuring photographs, championship cups, and Pelé's famous No. 10 jersey. The legendary player scored his 1,000th goal on this hallowed field.
Things to Know Before You Go
- Soccer buffs should book a VIP behind-the-scenes Maracanã stadium tour to visit the field, locker rooms, and bench areas.
- The venue is wheelchair accessible.
- The stadium museum is open daily and charges a small admission fee.
How to Get There
The metro will take you to Estacio Maracanã, from where it is only a short walk to the stadium.
When to Get There
Aside from rare events, access to the stadium is via official scheduled tours.
Music at Maracanã
The stadium has hosted an array of concerts throughout the years, including performances by Tina Turner, Frank Sinatra, Madonna, and Paul McCartney.