Spectacular PHOTOS From Rio 2016 Closing Ceremony

Rio said farewell to hosting the Olympics on Sunday as the closing ceremony experienced periods of rain that poured down on the thousands of athletes and spectators in attendance from around the world. 

The Olympic flame was extinguished at Maracana stadium, signaling that the Rio Games are officially over. 

International Olympic Committee President Thomas Bach gave a poignant speech during the ceremony that saw Toyko's new governor, Yuriko Koike, the first woman to hold that job, happily accept the Olympic flag from Rio Mayor Eduardo Paes. 

The 2020 Summer Games is set to be hosted in Tokyo. And to the delight of the crowd gathered at the stadium, a video showed Japan's Prime Minister, Shinzo Abe, who announced he won't make it to Rio in time. 

So Abe turned into the Japanese video game plumber Mario and then popped up in the flesh out of a huge green pipe in the stadium that he allegedly used as a shortcut to get from Tokyo to Rio.

Mario and Abe weren't alone. Tokyo, hoping to piggyback Rio's final moment in the Olympic spotlight to introduce its vision of the next games, also packed a video with Pac-Man, Hello Kitty and other manga and video game icons.   

It was clear that the Japanese came in to accept the Olympic flag with promises that in four years, everybody would be invited to gather again and celebrate the best sports stars in the world.   

The closing ceremony itself was a trimmed down version of what had been hoped for. There were speeches and fireworks and an uplifting video of the Rio 2016 highlights. 

For Brazil it may have been a teary end. But it was also a relief that after Zika and all else, the finishing line had been reached.

The closing ceremony included a celebration of Brazil's fauna and its diversity and beauty and some traditional music followed by the athletes from 207 competing nations.

Ironically, officials also took advantage of the watching global TV audience to introduce its new 'Olympic channel', on the day that the sports action was over. 

Brazilian art was also highlighted with a tribute to Brazil's Serra da Capybara National park, a UNESCO World Heritage site.

There was poetry, dancing and the audience were informed about Brazilian craft making including 'bringing clay to life.' 

While athletes from around the world packed the Rio Games closing ceremony, one of the biggest stars was absent - Brazil soccer great Pele.