For many Sports fans all around the world half the fun of going to the game is the Stadium and its atmosphere. Teams like the Knicks, the Packers and Football Clubs like Manchester United and FC Barcelona are legendary partly because of how historic and massive their stadiums are. So here are the Top ten stadiums you have to see before you die. (College Football Stadiums will have their own list)
10. Circuit de Monaco. Monte Carlo, Monaco
It is not much of a stadium as it is an event. But nonetheless it makes the list at number ten. Not many may know about this event and those who do may only know because Tony Stark drove through the race in the 2nd Iron Man. The first race was held in 1929 and won by William Grover-Williams in a Bugatti. This course is considered the most demanding track in Formula One racing and even though the course has changed over the years it continues to be the track that challenges the world’s greatest drivers. With many elevation shifts, tight corners and extremely narrow roads it is one of the most adrenaline pumping races you’ll ever watch. It contains the slowest corner in Formula One (29 mph) and also the quickest at (160 mph). The famous tunnel section (running under the Fairmont Hotel) is said to be difficult for drivers to cope with due to the quick switch from light to dark, then back to light again, at one of the fastest points of the course. So if you ever own a Ferrari or Lamborghini you might want to try it out on the Circuit de Monaco. Just make sure you let your Car insurance know so they can raise your rate.
9. Augusta National. Augusta, Georgia
Is there anything like an up and down Sunday at Augusta? Phil, Tiger and Rory in the final group? Every year the course get more beautiful and the competition keeps on getting better. Young guns like Rory, Bubba Watson and Keegan Bradley are trying to dethrone the all-time greats like Tiger and Phil. Regardless if you are a Golf fan or not this is one of the most sought after tickets in all of sports. Bring your lawn chairs and head to which ever hole seems most intriguing because walking from hole to hole doesn’t guarantee you a good view. But the chance to see Tiger and Phil in person? Priceless. Besides why wouldn’t you want to go to an event where apart of the course is called “Amen Corner.”
8. Wrigley Field. Chicago, Illinois. (cap. 41,159)
Built in 1914 it is the most historic thing Chicago has to offer besides Navy Pier and good ol’ Al Capone. The Cubbies are Chicago’s most beloved team that has not won a World Series in over a 100 years. But when they do, expect the whole city to be shut down. When many go for the first time they call it a dump but it’s pretty nice looking for over a hundred. When you think of a ballpark, you smell hot dogs and beer. Well at Wrigley add some peanuts in the smell and it is just about the same. Day games at Wrigley are picture perfect blue sky, sunny days in the Windy City. If you’re looking for baseball at its core. Wrigley is the place to see a ballgame, even if the Cubs suck.
7. Fenway Park. Boston Massachusetts. (cap. 37,400)
Another Park from America’s Pastime Fenway is one of the most recognizable stadiums in all the world. Opened in 1912 it is America’s oldest standing park and one of the most historic. Home to some of the greatest teams and players in Baseball history, Fenway is mostly known for the wildest fans in baseball and the Green Monster. Yankee fans even say that this stadium is a must see even though most will never admit it publicly. It is a must see if you’re an avid sports fan whether you love or hate baseball. Or in my and the rest of New York’s case hate the Red Sox.
6. Lambeau Field. Green Bay, Wisconsin. (cap.73,094)
The Frozen Tundra (in Chris Berman voice) is Wisconsin’s most coveted jewel. One of the most historic stadiums for one of the most historic teams is located on 1265 Lombardi Avenue named after their very own legendary coach Vince Lombardi. Bart Starr, Brett Favre, Reggie White Ray Nitschke, Paul Hornung and soon to be Aaron Rodgers round a list of Hall of Famers that have worn the Green and Gold. But it is not so much the Tradition as it is the people of Wisconsin. These types of people make the atmosphere special. Whether you are a Giants or Vikings fan and everyone in between the pack fans are there to have a good time and watch the pack kick some ass. So bundle up because if you can’t make it before November chances are you’ll get cuddly in the snow.
5. Yankee Stadium. Bronx, New York. (cap. 50,287)
The house that Ruth built. All the legends from DiMaggio to Gehrig even though the old Stadium is gone the tradition will forever live on. Somethings will never change, Monument Park or the classic Yankee fan. Old backwards hat that he got when he was 7, Jeter Jersey and usually cursing the Red Sox, whether the Yanks are playing them it doesn’t really matter, true Yankee fans always find a way to blame it on the Red Sox. Regardless the Stadium today should be a national landmark, if a stadium had to define baseball through the years Yankee stadium would be that ballpark.
4. The Rose Bowl. Pasadena, California (cap. 92,542)
The Granddaddy of them all. Every college football players dream is to play a game on Jan. 1st around 3pm. Usually a beautiful 75 degree day it is also every fans dream as well. It doesn’t matter who is playing the site itself is worth the price of admission. The games are always pretty entertaining as well. Last year ended with Russell Wilson not spiking the ball in time giving Oregon the 45-38 victory in stunning fashion. And who could forget Vince Young and Texas beating the unstoppable USC in the final seconds. Texas somehow pulling out a 41-38 victory at the Rose Bowl, one of college football’s greatest games of all time. You won’t always get the best game of all time, but you will get the best view of a game.
3. Camp Nou. Spain, Barcelona. (cap. 99, 354)
Sorry Real Madrid. Both Santiago Bernabeau and Camp Nou are spectacular arenas that have very similar qualities. But if I were to choose, something about FC Barcelona and Camp Nou that edges Real and Santiago, but only by a hair length. It is Europe’s largest stadium for one, because well with so many Barcelona addicts it NEEDS to be that big. If you don’t know soccer or don’t follow it odds are you’re unclear to how good this club is. In 2009, they won La Liga, Copa del Rey, and the Champions league. Lionel Messi just broke the record for most goals in a year at 86. A record comparable to DiMaggio’s 56 game hit streak. He is one of the best footballer’s in the world and possibly of all time. And if means seeing him with 99,000 fellow Barca fanatics, by all means.
2. Madison Square Garden. Manhattan, New York. (cap. 19,033)
For a city so big, MSG is the only stadium that can handle the heart of New York City. Used for anything from wrestling to boxing to Concerts. MSG will always be a Basketball Stadium. Home of the New York Knicks and the NBA’s craziest fans. When NBA players talk about MSG, they talk about it as so it was the home of Zeus. Home to some of the most historic and memorable games and as well as individual performances. Who could forget LeBron’s triple-double, Kobe’s 61 or every MJ performance, who played those games as if it were his last. And of course Reggie Miller’s 8 points in 11 seconds propelling the Pacers to win that incredible 7 game series. This year Melo and the Knicks have gotten the place bumpin’ again as season tickets have sold out and MSG has been on a 34 game sellout streak. If you ever get the chance, cherish it, this stadium is the best the US has to offer.
1. Wembley Stadium. London, England. (cap.90,000, 105,000 combined seating and standing)
Argue all you want folks, but this is number one. Now I was born in the US and know well that soccer is not America’s sweetheart, but in the world it is. In a country known for royalty, Wembley is king. Used for all types of things, nothing more useful than for its football events. Is it home of England’s National Football team most importantly. It is used for the FA Community Shield game which is between the winners of the FA Cup and Premier League champions. It is used quite frequently in European Football, most notably it hosted the 2011 Champions League Final and will do so again in 2013. The English love their Football, and what a better place to watch a match than at the stunning State-of-Art Wembley Stadium.
Honorable 10: Old Tratford, Santiago Bernabeau, Estadio Azteca, Allianz Germany, Ethidad Stadium, Soldier Field, AT&T Park, Staples Center, Arrowhead and The United Center.
Stadium capacity’s courtesy of Wikipedia.