After a short 180-day turnaround, the Olympics are back.
The 2020 Tokyo Olympics concluded with the Closing Ceremony on Aug. 8, 2021, giving the world a glimpse at what the 2024 Paris Olympics will bring. However, the next edition of the Games will kick off with the 2022 Opening Ceremony in Beijing.
The Chinese capital will be hosting its second ever Olympics and its first ever Winter Olympics. Beijing first hosted the Games in 2008 and featured one of the most awe-inspiring Opening Ceremonies in Olympic history. How will the city follow it up on Feb. 4?
One of the main traditions at the Opening Ceremony is the Parade of Nations. Here’s a look at what to expect when athletes march into National Stadium in Beijing.
What is the Parade of Nations at the Olympics Opening Ceremony?
The Opening Ceremony serves as the formal introduction for the Olympics. Though some events will begin two days earlier, the Opening Ceremony features the lighting of the torch, which symbolizes the start of the new Games.
The Parade of Nations highlights each competing nation in a given Games. The parade has been featured at each Olympics since 1908, giving athletes an opportunity to walk with fellow competitors under their nation’s flag.
Athletes from 91 countries will march their way around the National Stadium for the Parade of Nations at the 2022 Opening Ceremony. The Opening Ceremony is not a mandatory event for athletes to attend. At the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, the number of participating athletes at the ceremony was decreased due to COVID-19 restrictions. Other athletes pass on the ceremony due to scheduling conflicts with their Olympic events.
|Date / Time (ET)||Show||Where to Watch|
|Feb. 4 6:30 a.m. ET||Opening Ceremony LIVE||NBC | Peacock | NBCOlympics.com|
|Feb. 4 8 p.m. ET||Opening Ceremony Primetime||NBC | Peacock | NBCOlympics.com|
Which country marches first in the Parade of Nations?
Greece is the first team to march out during the Parade of Nations at each Olympics. The country gets the distinction for its founding role in the first modern Games, which took place in Athens in 1896, as well as the original Olympics thousands of years ago.
After Greece, the Parade of Nations will follow the alphabetical order of the home country’s language with two exceptions.
Which country marches last in the Parade of Nations?
The host country marches last during the Parade of Nations at each Olympics. In 2022, with Beijing playing host, China will be the final country to step out during the Opening Ceremony.
Future Olympic host countries have been moved to the end of the parade to add prominence with their upcoming Games. This was not done at the 2018 Olympics in PyeongChang, but it was done for the 2020 Olympics in Tokyo, with the U.S. (2028 Los Angeles Games) and France (2024 Paris Games), respectively, walking out ahead of Japan.
The penultimate nation to walk out at this year’s Opening Ceremony will be Italy, which will host the 2026 Milan-Cortina Olympics.
What is the Parade of Nations full marching order?
Here is a full look at the Parade of Nations marching order at the 2022 Opening Ceremony: