Mysterious messages at Copacabana

Exclusive images from World Cup host nation Brazil, where more unexplained symbols and messages have appeared at various landmarks


Rio de Janeiro was the scene of yet more mysterious signs and symbols this week as a series of unidentified messages were spotted around the World Cup host city.

On Monday, the usually tranquil Leme neighborhood was the talk of Rio as the mountainside that overlooks the beach was illuminated with the giant message: #WINNERTAKESEARTH

Mountain mystery | A message above the beach volleyball at Leme

The following day it was the turn of the internationally-famous Copacabana neighbourhood, which saw its central region plastered with the same hashtagged text.

Guests at the luxurious city hotel, the Copacabana Palace, left their rooms to get a better view of the bizarre transmission.

Light show | A symbol on the side of Santa Maria hill

The hill of Santa Marta, close to the iconic Christ the Redeemer statue, was struck on Wednesday. It featured a giant circle with a football shape carved into the centre of the image. Fans driving to the Maracana to watch Flamengo play Botafogo stopped their cars to take photos.

"I have lived in Rio since the day I was born and have never seen anything like it. I'm a little scared because I do not know what this symbol means," said Carlos Perez, a Rio resident.

On Sunday, a mysterious hologram of the same symbol was projected on Rio's Sugarloaf mountain, while London sports venue Hackney Marshes was gouged by a three-metre football the following day. The digital billboards of New York City’s Times Square have also displayed similar messages. 

Rio grand | The city's apartments are overshadowed by the symbol