Brazil might be one of the most fascinating destinations that you can ever dream of in both the American continents combined. But all its majestic traveling experiences mount to nothing against the interest that FIFA World Cup 2014 has given birth to. Visiting Rio De Janeiro or Sao Paulo simply to satiate the traveler inside you is a totally different concept compared to traveling to these cities specifically in the football world cup dates.
Why is this? You might ask. Well, let me ask you a simple question which single sporting event do you think is the most popular in the world, Super Bowl or Olympics? Think again folks, because the largest single sport event of the world is the FIFA World Cup. And this time around it is Brazil at the helm.
Started on June 12, the world cup will go on for one whole month and end with the final on July 13. During this time period, a total of 64 matches are going to be played among 32 countries. Imagine the passion, imagine the crowd, imagine the diversity of cultures and imagine the atmosphere that a combination of all these would create.
Having read about these figures, you might be wondering if it is going to be possible for a person to be able to visit all the matches if he wishes to. Guess what, the Brazilian government has been working hard on this one; after a long list of renovations, road constructions, modifications to air and rail schedules etc., each one of the matches is now going to be in a place from where you will be able to reach the next venue in less than a day’s time. Oh and these commuting improvements include a new bullet train between Sao Paula and Rio de Janeiro too!
Moreover, if you are not that fond of a hectic tailgating schedule that would continue for a whole month, you may wish to settle for some of the venues. I would personally suggest Sao Paulo, Rio de Janeiro and Brasilia – the federal capital. One obvious reason for that is because the finals will take place in Rio and Brasilia and one of the semi-finals takes place in Sao Paulo. Moreover, Sao Paulo and Brasilia are going to hold six matches each while Rio de Janeiro is going to host the maximum, seven matches. Planning a stay around these three cities for the month will not only allow you to watch at least one third of the whole world cup, it will also allow you spare time to fulfill your travelers’ conventional hunger i.e. sightseeing. Of course you could pinch in a couple of other important matches from elsewhere too.
That being said, the three cities I am suggesting you are also the best that Brazil has to offer in terms of tourism value. Brasilia, in contrast to Rio is more of a modern city. It does lack in terms of the scenic beaches of the latter but those deficiencies are made up for by the unparalleled architectural wonders that it has. For instance, those among you that have a heart for art and religion would never think of getting out of Brazil without visiting the Metropolitan Cathedral of Brasilia and the JuscelinoKubitschek Bridge. Then there is Sao Paulo, the city that needs no introduction. It is the largest city of the country and the most vibrant in terms of local culture. It is Sao Paulo where people go to for the greatest of concerts and come back with stories of amazing restaurants with unforgettable cuisines.
Estadio De Maracana, the stadium where the final will be held is also the largest in South America, it is in Rio. Rio de Janeiro can offer you only the best of experiences in terms of beaches and nightlife. The infamous Ipanema Beach and Copacabana Beach can help you relax once you are done with the shouting, jeering and supporting at your favorite matches. Not to forget, Rio also has Christ the Redeemer Statue – this in itself is something that people travels specifically to visit and pay homage to.
All in all, if you can afford it, a trip to Brazil – or as the locals call it, Brasil – in the FIFA World Cup 2014 is probably going to be the best deal you will get for a couple of years. I wouldn’t skip it for Rome!