Talking to most sports fans, a recurring theme is that the travel and experiences surrounding the event are just as much a part of the entertainment as the game itself. There’s such a huge variety of sporting occasions happening across the world in different environments and over different periods of time, that “sports travel” has become a sector all its own. Of course, we all love different sports and that would largely dictate our choices but we thought it would be fun to look at it as a neutral, providing the most interesting travel experience for spectators in 2018.
African Nations Football Championship
When: January – February 2018
If you can’t wait for the FIFA World Cup in the summer then a trip to Morocco in January will fill the gap. The African Nations Football Championship (not to be confused with the similar but definitely different African Cup of Nations) is being held across 4 cities, Agadir, Casablanca, Marrakech and Tangier. What better way to spend a few weeks exploring the country than to follow matches in all those locations?
Super Bowl LII
Where: Minneapolis, USA
When: February 2018
Nowhere does sports entertainment better than the Super Bowl. If you’re lucky enough to be able to get a ticket to THE game of the year then there’s a lot going on to make a worthwhile trip with the Saint Paul Winter Carnival scheduled to coincide. OK, we do realize that Minneapolis in February is pretty cold, but we’ve checked and it’s definitely an indoor stadium for the Super Bowl!
Where: Pyeongchang, South Korea
When: February 2018
2018 happens to be on the four-year cycle of Winter Olympic Games and the venue this time moves to South Korea and the city of Pyeongchang near to the country’s east coast. There also events taking place in Gangneung and Jeongseon. It’s less than 3 hours travel to the capital, Seoul so there’s a chance to explore the country during the 18-day duration of the Games.
Where: Augusta, USA
When: April 2018
There surely can’t be a more beautiful place to watch a sporting event than the Augusta National Golf Club in Georgia. Every April crowds flock to see the world’s best golfers take on a course renowned for its sometimes-brutal challenges but set in the context of the loveliest scenery imaginable, with magnolias and azaleas in full bloom. There’s also a mystique around the exclusivity of the Club which makes the annual opening of its doors to us mortals irresistible.
Cycling Grand Tours
Where: Italy, France, Spain
When: May 2018 (Italy), July 2018 (France), August – September 2018 (Spain)
From the 17th to the 19 century there was a coming of age tradition for noble young people in Europe to undertake a Grand Tour, a sort of cultural education and adventure. The modern version can still involve all the culture you can handle as it visits the great cities of Europe, but this time it involves a love of two wheels. There are three cycling grand tours, the Giro d’Italia, the Vuelta a Espana and, most famous of all, the Tour de France. Each tour lasts around 3 weeks and crisscrosses almost the entirety of each country so you can be sure to catch a stage wherever you are. Bizarrely, the 2018 Giro d’Italia is starting with a few stages in Israel, the first time ever a Grand Tour has ventured outside Europe.
FIFA World Cup
When: June – July 2018
The biggest global sports event of them all is back in 2018 with a first-time host country in Russia. The tournament is spread over a huge area as you might expect in the world’s largest country, from Kaliningrad in the west between Poland and Lithuania, to Ekaterinburg 3000 kilometers to the east, and to Sochi in the far south on the Black Sea coast. The final will be in the capital Moscow on 15th July.
Wimbledon Tennis Championships
Where: London, England
When: July 2018
The British, who let’s be honest are fairly British most of the time, truly play up to their stereotype during the 2 weeks of the Wimbledon Lawn Tennis Championships. Eccentric behavior, outdated dress codes and strange customs become perfectly normal in south London as the few weeks where the sun actually shines in England coincides with the nation’s favourite sports tournament. It’s a great time to visit the UK, you might even get a tan!
Where: Sydney, Australia
When: October 2018
For sporting inspiration, the Invictus Games is a remarkable multi-sports event for injured armed services personnel and veterans. After being held in Toronto, Canada in 2017 the event moves to Sydney, Australia in 2018 where 500 competitors from 17 countries will take part. Sydney was an amazing host to the 2000 Summer Olympics and Paralympics and will undoubtedly fully embrace and celebrate the heroism of everyone involved.
F1 Brazilian Grand Prix
Where: Sao Paulo, Brazil
When: November 2018
The Formula 1 World Championship tours the globe and can be visited in many iconic locations, but for atmosphere and passionate fans, the Brazilian Grand Prix at Interlagos takes some beating. Brazilians are nuts about F1 and drivers from the country are idolized. It’s also the penultimate race of the season so there is usually added excitement as the Championship comes down to the wire.
Triple Crown of Surfing
Where: Hawaii, USA
When: December 2018
Surfing might not be famous as a spectator sport but it’s certainly an experience worth enjoying. The ultimate location to do so must be Hawaii where the Triple Crown of Surfing is held each December. Take in some surf culture, be amazed by participants taking on the world’s mightiest waves and enjoy it all on some of the most beautiful beaches anywhere. Not really a hard sell this one is it?
You can ensure you can share your experiences at great sporting events anywhere in the world in real-time by using a Tep portable wifi device. The device is only $8.95 per day for unlimited data usage, plus, you and your friends or family can all share one device (up to 5 gadgets can connect at a time). Tep’s portable device is amazingly travel-friendly too, it will slip into a handbag, pocket or rucksack. Find out more or buy/rent a device here.