A Guide to Enjoying the FIFA World Cup 2014 Brazil

Rio Gears Up For World Cup Tourism

As we posted about yesterday, it looks like the World Cup is going to be even crazier this year due to the unpredictability of Brazil’s subway systems. However, if you are one of the numerous travelers still planning to attend, here’s a guide to enjoying the FIFA World Cup 2014 in Brazil.

How to Get Around…

Disclaimer: I’m assuming anyone who is going to the World Cup has already booked his or her flight, so I’m not even going to touch upon airline fare and just move straight to what you should do once you’re there. We already told you that the subway is a terrible option, but attempting to drive between the different cities in Brazil to see all the different soccer games probably isn’t the best idea either. You’ll have to go through the hassle of renting a car and then need to deal with traffic, as millions of people attempt to flock to each arena (which, themselves, hold 40,000 fans, so good luck with parking). Also, flying from city to city is not a great option, due to both cost and availability (you’re going to be hard pressed to find room on flights last minute). Your best bet is the bus, which while a little slow (it’s a six hour trip from Rio to somewhere like Sao Paulo) ensures that you won’t get held up with parking and is more affordable than flying or renting a car and paying for gas.

Where to Stay…

While you and your friends can simply road trip from match location to match location, without a real central base to stay at, I’d suggest getting a hotel room or renting an apartment in Rio. You may end up having to pay a little extra (because you’ll have your spot in Rio and then will most likely need to stay in another city for at least a night or two while following your team), but it’s worth it to ensure that you have a central place to crash and keep your belongings. Bonus: you can enjoy Fanfest at Copacabana Beach during the days when you’re not traveling to matches.

When You’re Not Watching Soccer…

So even though most of your time will be taken up with traveling to matches, watching matches, and cheering or booing at said matches (depending on how your team is doing), you should still allow yourself sometime to explore the culture of Brazil. The country offers numerous beaches (Salvador, Porto Alegre, and Iguazu Falls) and an overwhelming amount of sights to see, both naturally formed and man-made (I’d personally recommend visiting Manaus, which is deep in the Amazon, and looks absolutely stunning). Finally, if all that isn’t enough for you, there’s also the samba culture (with fantastic music on literally almost every street) and nightlife (most recommended clubs are Barman Club and BASE). 

Being Safe and Secure…

Hopefully, the rest of Brazil is safer than its subways, and even if it is, there are still a couple of things to always keep in mind. First, never wear anything too expensive (watches or other jewelry) or flaunt your smartphone or digital camera – otherwise you’re just asking to get stuff stolen. Second, take a photo of your passport on your phone, so that way you will not need to always being carrying it around with you the whole time. Third, have a spare credit card and keep it in a safe place, and carry minimal cash on you but enough that you’d be able to buy yourself a small meal or a little souvenir for yourself or a loved one. And finally and most importantly, watch some soccer, party up a storm, and just have fun.

Photo by Mario Tama/Getty Images

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