Few would argue that the best sports travel experiences are ones that capture the joy and competition of a live sporting event and allow you the freedom to enjoy the place you are visiting. Sports have a long history of fandom. Take soccer for example which can be traced all the way back to Cambridge, England in 1848 when they first set out the rules for the beautiful game and began playing it as an organized sport. It’s just one example of a sport that attracts fans who want the best sports travel experience and are willing to go to great lengths to get it.
For many fans the ultimate soccer tour experience happens every four years when the World Cup happens. With its roots in 1930, the tournament is a huge draw card for fans from around the world and attracts large crowds. The most successful Central American soccer team, having qualified for World Cups in Italy, Brazil, South Korea and Japan, and Germany, is Costa Rica, which first convened a national team in 1921. South America, of course, is really passionate about the game and has several really strong teams that are worth a look such as Brazil and Argentina.
America’s soccer fandom is growing, spurred on by encouragement from the rest of the world where soccer is the most popular sport. There are now more than 4 billion soccer fans in the world. Most major countries have a soccer team. Swedes, for example, adore soccer and has 45 national stadiums in which teams can compete. There are more than 240,000 licensed soccer players in Sweden; they are even trying for greater equality in the sport with more than 56,000 female players.
It’s little wonder that soccer is so popular given how good it is as an incentive to get people into exercise. In a typical soccer game, a professional soccer player can run as much as 3.9 miles or 48 kilometers. Getting fit is certainly possible when you play soccer and there are more than 25 million children playing the game every year. Ensuring that adolescents play sports is vital to ensuring active lifestyles in the long run; research has found teens involved in sports are as much as eight times more likely to continue active lifestyles at age 24. A soccer travel tour can be a great way to encourage young players and keep them playing.
Of course the World Cup is not the only major soccer event that can attract followers. Given the number of countries with extensive soccer leagues and tournaments in place, there are a variety of options for those wanting to enjoy the soccer experience. Sports travel is increasingly popular with a 2012 study finding that almost a third of all trips taken were for the main purpose of attending a sports event. Sports Travel Magazine noted that this reached as high as 90% if you included all kinds of sporting activity. Now’s the time to do your homework and find the best sports travel experience for you and your needs.