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Image of cyclists in Tour de France
13 Jun

Love Travel? Love Sport? Combine the two for the trip of a lifetime!

In sport there are some events, some moments, which stay with you forever. Ever had that feeling of watching a sporting occasion on TV and thinking “I wish I was there”? Travelling to sports events experiencing the atmosphere, the highs and the lows, the excitement, a memory shared with friends and family, these are some special times. Travel is the same, have you ever seen a photograph of a stunning destination and thought “I wish I was there”! This is why sport and travel combines so well…double the experiences, double the memories, double the fun! There are some great upcoming once in a lifetime events happening all over the world in the not too distant future and now is the time to put some plans in place!

The Italian Grand Prix – Monza
Sure you could go to Silverstone, and camp in the mud, and I get that it would still probably be an incredible experience and there is a certain romance about it. But with Ferrari’s fightback against the muscle of Mercedes this year the Italians will be at fever pitch for this occasion at one of the most historic and traditional circuits on the calendar. The race takes place over the weekend of the 1st-3rd September in the Royal Park of Monza on the outskirts of Milan, perfect for combining the event with some serious sightseeing.

I would be very tempted to go the whole hog and combine the race weekend with a trip to the home of iconic Ferrari at Maranello and visit the museum there (https://musei.ferrari.com/en), a couple of hours from where the race takes place, but what a great theme for a trip!

Thomas Cook have a great sports travel section and also sell all-inclusive packages to the grand prix here.

Cricket – The Ashes!
Fancy spending Christmas having a barbecue on the beach? Lapping up the sun, sea and sand of Australia? Australia is a dream destination for so many and this winter one of the biggest rivalries (albeit fairly good natured rivalry) in sport will be reignited as England head out to Australia to battle it out for The Ashes! Each of the five tests is in a major Australian city each with its own personality, combining anyone of these cities with this monster sporting event is sure to be incredible! The first 5 day test starts in Brisbane 23.11.17, then moving onto Adelaide 02.12.17, Perth 14.12.17, Melbourne on Boxing Day, and finishing in Sydney 04.01.18. Again Thomas Cook offer comprehensive packages as the official tour operator for the series.

Le Tour de France
Professional cycling’s showpiece event, something which us Brits have experienced a fair amount of success in recently, takes place this year 1st-23rd July. Chris Froome and Team Sky are sure to be right up amongst the favourites again in this amazing test of body, mind, tactics and team work. Taking in spectacular mountain scenery in the French Alps, the south coast and finishing as always on the Champs-Elysees, Paris, this really is an iconic event taking place in some of the most beautiful scenery. Discover France Adventures is an official tour operator for the tour and offers a range of really cool packages. The full list of official Tour de France travel agents can be found here.

Football, The World’s Game
It really is the world’s game. Anywhere you go in the world you will see kids kicking a ball about, it’s a game without boundaries, accessible to everyone. Yes todays stars may well be overpaid and there is a lot which can be criticised about the governing bodies, however, going to a match at one of the great stadiums around the world still has the ability to make the hairs on the back of your neck stand up, the excitement, the passion…there’s nothing quite like it. There’s the Milan derby at the San Siro, the yellow wall of Borussia Dortmund’s Westfalenstadion, The Madrid derby…a derby so intense that each set of supporters have their own fountain to celebrate in! Matches where cities…countries even, come to a standstill. My pick would be the Nou Camp, Barcelona. What an awesome city with a legendary football team. Holding over 99,000 fanatical supporters still with one of the greatest players ever to play the game turning out for them…this is a destination on every football fans bucket list. This ground is due for renovation too and it would definitely be worth paying a visit prior to this to soak up the character before the modernisation. Tours of the stadium can be booked here tickets for matches can also be booked through the website.

2018…
2018 will see the football world cup take place in Russia and the Ryder Cup returning to Europe taking place in France. Massive events which will require possible memberships and a fair deal of pre-planning but will again be once in a lifetime experiences. 2018 will also see the Winter Olympics take place in PyeongChang, South Korea, another huge sporting occasion in a place with so much to see and do.

What’s that saying? “Travel, it leaves you speechless, then turns you into a storyteller”. There will definitely be some stories to tell after these trips! Don’t forget to organise your travel insurance before you set off on your trip to remember.

Happy Travels!

Tom – My Travel Mission – www.mytravelmission.com

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