Under the motto of Viva sua Paixão (Live your Passion), it will be the first time that Olympic Games are held in Brazil, and the South American continent as a whole, plus the 2nd time in Latin America after Mexico city in 1968.
Paradoxically, it will also be the first Summer Olympiad to be held in winter time - in the southern hemisphere winter ends on September 20th. Idem for Summer Paralympics, that will occur from September 7th to September 18th, 2016.
The 2016 Summer Olympic programme features 28 sports and a total of 41 disciplines and 306 events. Four neighborhoods of Rio will host the majority of the games, Barra de Tijuca, Copacabana Beach, Maracanã and Deodoro.
Football will be the first sport to start earlier, on August 3rd, 2016. Besides Rio's Maracanã and Engenhão (Estádio Olímpico João Havelange), football matches will alsto take place in Salvador (Arena Fonte Nova), São Paulo (Estádio do Morumbi), Belo Horizonte (Estádio Mineirão) and Brasília (Estádio Nacional de Brasília).
Let's review more in detail Rio's four zones and find out which sport competition will be held in each venue...
Rio Paralympics Logo
Barra de Tijuca Zone:
Located in the west zone, Barra will be the heart of Rio 2016 Olympic and Paralympics games. The Olympic and Paralympic Village, Rio’s Olympic Park, the Riocentro Convention Centre, IBC/MPC and Barra Media Village are all located in this neighborhood.
It will also accommodate 15 venues where the competitions of 15 Olympic sports will be held: Boxing, Table Tennis, Badminton, Weightlifting, Gymnastics (Artistic, Rhythmic and Trampoline), Cycling (Track), Aquatic Sports (Diving, Water Polo, Swimming and Synchronized Swimming), Basketball, Fencing, Judo, Taekwondo, Wrestling (Freestyle and Greco-Roman), Handball, Golf and Tennis.
During the Paralympic Games, it will host 12 sports: Wheelchair Basketball, Wheelchair Rugby, Judo, Boccia, Sitting Volleyball, Goalball, Wheelchair Tennis, Cycling (Track), Swimming, Football 5-a-side, Table Tennis and Weightlifting.
Stretching over four kilometres, Copacabana is one of Rio's most famous neighborhoods, known all over the world for its beach and beautiful mountains like the Sugar Loaf and Corcovado. On Sundays, the lines of Avenida Atlântica - the avenue on the waterfront - are closed to cars, for the Carioca (people born in Rio) population to enjoy the ocean atmosphere, play sports, swim in the ocean or simply relax.
Also the sport centres of Flamengo Park, Rodrigo de Freitas Lagoon and the Marina da Gloria in Guanabara Bay will host competitions in the area. For the Olympic Games it will be the Athletics (Race Walking), Cycling (Road), Aquatic Sports (Marathon Swimming), Triathlon, Sailing, Beach Volleyball, Rowing and Canoeing (Sprint).
During the Paralympics they will host they will host Rowing, Sailing, Athletics (Marathon), Cycling (Road), Paracanoeing and Paratriathlon.
Located in Rio’s Zona Oeste (West Zone), 30 kilometers (18 miles) from Centro (downtown), the area is served by the Deodoro train station, which takes passengers to Central Station within fifty minutes. It is home to Brazil´s largest military barracks, with over 60,000 servicemen and women.
This zone will host seven Olympic (Equestrian, Cycling - Mountain Bike and BMX, Modern Pentathlon, Shooting, Canoeing - Slalom, Hockey and Fencing) and three Paralympic competitions (Shooting, Equestrian and Wheelchair Fencing).
One of the disciplines recently announced to take place in Deodoro will be rugby sevens, which is a smaller and faster version of the original rugby. Rugby has not been in the Olympics since 1924.
The zone is part of the Zona Norte, northern area, and is located in the heart of Rio de Janeiro, close to the City Centre. It includes two of Rio´s most famous sights: the Maracanã Stadium and the Sambódromo (Sambadrome), in addition to the João Havelange Olympic Stadium, also known as the Engenhão for its location in the Engenho de Dentro neighborhood.
The Maracanã Stadium will host the Opening and Closing Ceremonies of the Olympic Games, as well as some Football matches. The Maracanãzinho Gymnasium will host the Volleyball competitions. The Athletics (Marathon) and Archery competitions will take place in the Sambadrome. The João Havelange Stadium will be home to Athletics (track and field).
The Maracanã Zone will also host Archery and Athletics (track and field) competitions during the Paralympic Games as well as the Opening and Closing Ceremonies.