The Olympics is a major international multi-sport event normally held once every four years. The Games were first held in 1896 in Athens, Greece. Next is scheduled to be held from 23 July to 8 August 2021 in Tokyo, Japan.

So get ready, for one of the most trendy events of the Olympics is its inauguration ceremony. And no wonder why. The Olympics opening ceremony encompasses a poetic, creative, and majestic event.

It is one of the most wonderful pageants you’ll ever see. We are eager what Japan has for us, but meanwhile, let’s take a look at the 10 best opening ceremonies in Olympic History and how they welcomed the sporting universe.


10. 2010 – Vancouver

2010 Olympic Games were held in Vancouver, Canada. And as things get done in Canada, the opening ceremony was such a tasteful event. It transformed the stage into a massive ocean with ice caps. It also had the performance of graceful whales. And that wasn’t all, it also featured a performance from a fiddler and K.D. Lang singing Leonard Cohen’s “Hallelujah”.


9. 2002 – Salt Lake City

2002 Olympic Games were held in Salt Lake City, USA. This opening ceremony was very melancholic for it happened just months after the 9/11 attacks. So it was a more mournful kind of ceremony. But that didn’t let it be less. On the contrary, the American Flag flying at the World Trade Center during a moment of silence, the music composed by John Williams, and the dancers performing on ice skates were just the perfect way to inaugurate that year’s Olympic Games.


8. 2014 – Sochi

2014 Olympic Games were held in Sochi, Russia. Russia is well known for its elegant and graceful ballet. So, they didn’t miss the opportunity to show it to the world at the opening ceremony. A little girl floated through the stadium chasing a kite meanwhile a ballet of “Swan Lake” gave way to the Olympic symbol of the Dove of Peace.


7. 2012 – London

2012 Olympic Games were held in London, England. The London Games ceremony was embellished with an elaborate opera of sorts. There were industrial revolution decorations, Oliver Twist orphans parade, and from underneath a giant puppet Lord Voldemort came to life. And if that wasn’t enough, Mr. Bean showed up. And the Queen was there too (that’s right, the real Elizabeth II and her Corgis).


6. 2006 – Torino

2006 Olympic Games were held in Torino, Italy. Even though many believe this opening ceremony to have been a mess for it had an homage to the Renaissance and Dante to a red Ferrari rally car wildly spinning out on stage, many others agree the final performance from the tenor Luciano Pavarotti gives it a chance to be on this list.


5. 2016 – Rio de Janeiro

2016 Olympic Games were held in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. It was conducted by famous City of God director Fernando Meirelles. Even though it was a ceremony with a low budget, that didn’t stop it from dazzling us. It told the history of Brazil through an acrobatic light show and a changing landscape of the country’s rainforests.


4. 2000 – Sydney

2000 Olympic Games were held in Sydney, Australia. It was a very important opening ceremony since it was the kick-off of a new millennium. The platform’s stage was just dazzling. They are today known as “A New Era and Eternity”. But the real show stopper was a bizarre, levitating UFO of a stage that took flight.


3. 2004 – Athens

2004 Olympic Games were held in Athens, Greece. The return to the birthplace and its ancient tradition. This opening ceremony set the stage with a luminous, iridescent stadium floor and advanced lighting technology that future ceremonies have tried to emulate ever since. It was pretty majestic.


2. 2018 – Pyeongchang

2018 Olympic Games were held in Pyeongchang, South Korea. It starred Kim Jong-Un’s sister who made an appearance with world leaders. It also featured a record number of flying drones that made a constellation dome pattern. But even if it was a dazzling ceremony, a lot of drama was happening behind the scenes, increasing the tensions between North and South Korea.


1. 2008 – Beijing

2008 Olympic Games were held in Beijing, China. China didn’t lose the opportunity to display its place in the world. Illuminating displays were just the beginning. Once they turned the lights on, viewers were in the scope of the perfectly uniform faces and bodies that seemed to embody an entire populace. It was just a perfect meticulous work of art.