Not everyone reading this is going to be a fan of soccer... or, you know, football, for those of you over in Europe. That's perfectly fine and perfectly understandable, but even if that's the case, you still need to make it one of your traveling goals to head out and see some of these stadiums if you get the chance.
Even non-fans of the sport are able to appreciate what these grounds represent. You could even just sit back and admire the architectural beauty of it all. Honestly, this is as good as it gets. Here are 10 soccer stadiums that you absolutely have to visit.
10 Wembley Stadium - London, England
Soccer was born in England, so it makes sense that the home of English soccer takes its rightful place on this list. For some people, the old Wembley was much better than the new one, but in our eyes, it is even more impressive.
From the wonderful arch to the atmosphere that is generated from heading down Wembley Way, there’s a reason why it has been featured in so many high profile tournaments and matches, including the upcoming Euro 2020 final. It’s just magical, and all soccer/football fans should go there.
9 Stade de France - Paris, France
As the home destination of the current world champions, the Stade de France is widely considered to be a fortress in the realms of international soccer, and rightly so. From an outside perspective, it’s just generally a really beautiful place, but it also represents the strength of the French people.
They’ve been through a lot over the course of the last few years, and the Stade de France has been a focal point of that. As a symbol of strength and unity, fans continue to gather in this stadium to showcase their togetherness... and we love that.
8 Maracana - Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
The popular saying is that the English invented soccer and the Brazilians perfected it, and they may be right. The five-time world champions have put on a show on multiple occasions on the world stage, and more often than not, the Maracana has been at the heart of those celebrations.
The design of the round stadium is breathtaking enough, but the atmosphere inside the ground is what really takes it to a whole new level. From record-breaking crowds to samba songs that go on long into the night, there’s so much to love here.
7 Olympiastadion - Berlin, Germany
Germany has always been at the heart of soccer excellence, as their most recent 2014 FIFA World Cup win confirms. Their home ground, however, goes above and beyond anything that you could ever imagine when it comes to the aura surrounding the stadium.
One of the primary reasons for this is due to the history behind it because as we all know, the troubles that went on in Germany didn’t exactly go away overnight. The evil leaders that led the regime at the time considered the Olympiastadion to be a home base for the sporting world, which makes for quite an eerie vibe around the place.
6 Nou Camp - Barcelona, Spain
The museum alone makes a trip to the Nou Camp worth doing, and even then you’ll be begging to get a look at the ground itself. It’s just so picturesque, and for a city as grand and prestigious as Barcelona, it really does live up to the hype.
In history books, Barcelona has always been recognized as one of soccer’s greatest clubs, and that sentiment is echoed in the stadium itself. In terms of bucket list items, we’d argue that this ground is higher on the list than most in the eyes of soccer fans.
5 Estadio Azteca - Mexico City, Mexico
Mexican fans are absolutely crazy in every single way, shape, and form, and that much goes without saying. Beyond that, though, they also have one of the largest stadiums in the world.
On a good day the Estadio Azteca can pack out over 100,000 fans and even that might be viewed as us underselling it. It’s such a hidden gem because, despite its unbelievable size, it still isn’t attended by foreign travelers as much as it should be. In the next few years, we would like to see that change.
4 San Siro - Milan, Italy
Power. That’s the one word we think of when it comes to the San Siro, which plays host to two of European football’s finest: Inter Milan and AC Milan. The recent revelation of its inevitable demise has, understandably, sped up the process of fans wanting to go and visit the ground.
The San Siro has been around for longer than most of us have been alive, and while it’ll be sad to see it go, at the very least, we want to see it get the kind of respect it deserves in its final years.
3 Soccer City - Johannesburg, South Africa
As the focal point of the 2010 FIFA World Cup, Soccer City is widely considered to be the most important soccer stadium in all of Africa. From a picturesque point of view, it is absolutely stunning, it has featured some of the greatest moments in the history of the African game, and it reminds fans of that famous tournament almost a decade ago now.
It may not get the same level of hype and media attention as some of the alternatives on the list, but we really do hope that isn’t the case in the future.
2 Santiago Bernabéu - Madrid, Spain
Located in Spain a few hundred miles down the road from the Nou Camp, the Santiago Bernabeu often does enough to take our breath away time and time again. It is the land of giants in the world of soccer, because not only does it play host to Real Madrid, but it has also been the home of some of the game’s finest players ever.
It’s so much more than just a soccer stadium: it’s a place of culture. We hope that it is never torn down or replaced in any kind of form because it's perfect just the way it is.
1 Westfalenstadion - Dortmund, Germany
The Yellow Wall. Those three words, symbolizing the iconic tall stand which houses Borussia Dortmund fans on a week to week basis, should be more than enough to convince you that a trip to the Westfalenstadion is more than worth your time and effort.
Now that Dortmund is a consistent powerhouse in the realms of European soccer, we’re hoping that they are going to keep rising up as one of Europe’s top hotspots for fans of great soccer stadiums. There’s no guarantee of that, but come on, all you need to do is take one look at this place to be convinced of its beauty.