[Maracanã is closed for reforms in preparation for the FIFA World Cup 2014 from July 2010 till December 2012]
Despite the fact that the estádio Jornalista Mário Filho – better known as Maracanã – no longer recalls the grandeur of yesteryear, it is still an unmissable rendezvous for football/soccer fans worldwide – and even for those who just simply love anything Brazilian.
Maracanã is no longer the biggest stadium on the planet. Quite a number of stadiums overtook Maracanã decades ago. After a recent reform, today the stadium holds approximately 70.000 people.
Even at that size, the stadium hardly ever fills up, a reflection of the sorry state of football in Rio de Janeiro. In a recent game between Flamengo and Corinthians (the two Brazilian teams with a biggest following), less than 22.000 spectators went to the stadium. The previous day, the game between Botafogo and Santos drew 8.000 fans to Maracanã.
Nonetheless, Maracaná is still one of the sights of Rio. It contains a museum inside the main building, and during the guided tour around the stadium you get the chance to visit the changing rooms and come out onto the field. At the entrance of the museum there is a Hall of Fame where Brazilian football legends have left their imprints for posterity.
destination: Rio de Janeiro