Maracana was built as the flagship venue for the 1950 World Cup and was intended to be the largest stadium in the world
The host was the Estadio Jornalista Mario Filho, officially known as Maracana two World Cup finals in its existence, and thereby recorded the highest viewership in football history.
Rich in history and full of stories, the Maracana has become a must-do for all sports enthusiasts.
So if you are planning a visit, GATE brings you everything you need to know.
Where is Maracana located?
address: Professor Eurico Rabelo Rua, s/no, Porto 18, Maracan, Rio de Janeiro
Google Maps: You can find further directions to the Maracana Stadium here.
Maracana is located east of Rio de Janeiro, about five kilometers from the city center. It is approximately 12 kilometers north of the Copacabana and Ipanema beach areas.
The stadium is easily accessible by subway and train. Maracana train station is on subway line 2, which is accessible from downtown Rio or the Flamengo and Botafogo neighborhoods.
If you decide to take the train, take it red Ramal Deodoro line and get off at Maracana station.
When was Maracana built?
The Maracana was officially opened June 16, 1950, with a friendly match between a selection of players from Rio de Janeiro and Sao Paulo. The construction of the stadium began in August 1948 and lasted almost two years.
Just eight days after its opening, Maracana hosted the first game of the 1950 World Cup, in which Brazil played Mexico (4-0). It would then host four more matches in the group stage of the first round and three more in the second round before the final between Uruguay and Brazil (2-1) is played.
What is the capacity of Maracana?
The current official capacity of Maracana is just below that 79,000.
However, the official attendance for the 1950 World Cup Final was a staggering 173,000 paying spectators, but it is estimated that over 200,000 people watched the match live from the stands.
The Maracana remained unchanged until the 1990s, when safety regulations required a reduction in capacity and full stadium seating.
Brazil hosted another World Cup in 2014 and it was clear that Maracana would become the venue for the tournament, so in 2010 a three-year construction plan called for a complete restructuring of the bottom division, as well as the installation of a new roof, resulting in a seating capacity of 79,000.
Which teams play in the Maracana?
Flamengo and Fluminense have made Maracana their permanent home. Other Rio clubs such as Botafogo and Vasco da Gama occasionally use the stadium for high-profile games.
The Brazilian national soccer team often plays in the Maracana, in qualifiers and friendly matches.
Does Maracana host music concerts and other events?
In addition to football, Maracana offers a variety of spectacles, including concerts and other sporting events.
Frank Sinatra performed in front of 175,000 people at the Maracana in 1980 to celebrate the stadium’s 30th anniversary and since then Michael Jackson, Madonna, the Rolling Stones and Coldplay have performed there.
From 1980 to 1983 volleyball games between Brazil and the United Soviet Socialist Republic took place in the Maracana; One of their games drew 95,000 spectators, a world record at the time.
The Maracana was also chosen to host the opening and closing ceremonies of the 2016 Olympics, Paralympics and Pan American Games 2007.
What is the Maracana’s seating plan?
A seating chart for the Maracana can be found on the Football Tripper website.
Is it possible to book a Maracana tour?
The Maracana offers both guided and self-guided toursincluding a tour of the press room and insights into the iconic moments that took place in the historic stadium.
Pele’s footprint and Garrincha’s 1962 World Cup jersey are highlights of the tour.
The cost of a tour starts from R$27.50 (£4.50) and go up to R$65 (£10.50) depending on the guide, the tour runs from 9am to 4pm but times vary on match days.
Visit the Tour Maracana website for more information and bookings.