The Estadio Jornalista Mario Filho, officially known as the Maracana, has hosted two World Cup finals in its existence, and in doing so, recorded the highest spectator attendance in football history.
Rich in history and riddled with stories, the Maracana has become a must-see venue for all sports enthusiasts.
So if you are planning a visit, GOAL brings you everything you need to know.
Where is Maracana?
Address: Professor Eurico Rabelo Rua, s/no, Porto 18, Maracan, Rio de Janeiro
Google maps: Further directions to the Maracana stadium can be found here.
Maracana is located to the east of Rio de Janeiro, about five kilometres from the city centre. It is located approximately 12 kilometres north of the Copacabana and Ipanema beach areas.
Metro & Train
The stadium is easily accessible via metro and train. Maracana station is on metro line 2, which can be accessed from downtown Rio or the Flamengo and Botafogo neighbourhoods.
If you opt to take the train, take the red Ramal Deodoro line and get off at Maracana station.
When was Maracana built?
Maracana officially opened on June 16, 1950, with a friendly between a selection of players from Rio de Janeiro and Sao Paulo. Construction of the stadium began in August 1948 and took just under two years to complete.
Only eight days after its opening, Maracana hosted the first match of the 1950 World Cup, which pitted Brazil against Mexico (4-0). It would then host four more games in the first round group stage and three more in the second round stage before hosting the final between Uruguay and Brazil (2-1).
What is Maracana’s capacity?
Maracana’s current official capacity is just under 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 game live from the stands.
The Maracana remained unchanged until the 1990s, when safety regulations required that the capacity be reduced and the stadium become entirely seated.
Brazil went on to host another World Cup in 2014, and it was clear that Maracana would be the tournament's flagship venue, so in 2010, a three-year construction plan saw a complete re-structure of the bottom tier as well as the installation of a new roof, resulting in a seating capacity of 79,000.
Which teams play at Maracana?
Flamengo and Fluminense have made Maracana their regular home. Other Rio clubs, such as Botafogo and Vasco da Gama, use the stadium for high-profile matches on occasion.
The Brazilian national football team also often plays in the Maracana, in qualifiers and friendly games.
Does Maracana host music concerts & other events?
As well as football, Maracana hosts a variety of spectacles including concerts and other sporting events.
Frank Sinatra performed at the Maracana to a crowd of 175,000 in 1980 to commemorate the stadium's 30th anniversary, and since then, Michael Jackson, Madonna, The Rolling Stones, and Coldplay have all performed there.
From 1980 till 1983 volleyball matches between Brazil and the United Socialist Soviet Republic were held at the Maracana; one of their matches 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 the 2007 Pan American Games.
What is the Maracana seating plan?
A seating plan for the Maracana can be found on the football tripper website.
Can you book a Maracana tour?
The Maracana offers both guided and self-guided tours, which include viewing the press room and insight into the iconic moments that have occurred in the historic stadium.
Pele’s footprint and Garrincha’s 1962 World Cup kit are highlights of the tour.
The cost of a tour starts at R$27.50 (£4.50) and go up to R$65 (£10.50) depending on guides, the tour runs from 9am till 4pm but times will vary on match days.
Further information and bookings can be found on the Tour Maracana website.