19 stunning shots of Rio de Janeiro from above

With nearly 3 million international tourists visiting every year, the Brazilian city of Rio de Janeiro is one of the most popular tourist destinations in South America.

Rio de Janeiro is known the world over for its beautiful beaches, breathtaking scenery, and the vibrant and raucous Rio Carnival celebration. And the world will be watching as Rio de Janeiro hosts the 2016 Olympic Games — the first South American city to do so.

Catch a glimpse of this magnificent city and its famous landmarks in the aerial photos below.

Rio de Janeiro celebrated its 450th anniversary in March 2015.

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