Brazil 2014 is one of the most eagerly anticipated World Cups of all time. You can already imagine the beaches of Rio, the atmosphere of the Estadio Nacional de Brasilia, and the vibrant city life of the cosmopolitan Sao Paulo.

And it’s Sao Paulo which will be the first point of call for the tournament as hosts Brazil take on Croatia at the Arena Corinthians on June 12.

The city is the largest in the Southern Hemisphere and one with a rich soccer history with the likes of Robinho, Cafu, and Roberto Carlos all hailing from Sampa, as well as Sao Paulo FC and Corinthians being notable residents.

So if it’s a trip to the World Cup you’re looking for, look no further than Sao Paulo. The city has a host of great things to do for football fans and tourists alike. Welcoming the Netherlands, Chile, Uruguay, South Korea, Belgium, and England during the Group Stages, as well as the opening game, it will be a hub of first class internationals throughout the tournament, but away from the fixtures, there is plenty to be getting on with.

Places to stay, like any tournament, will be hard to come by, but there are a range of great hotels in the city. The Estanplaza Ibirapuera is just a stone’s throw away from one of Sao Paulo’s main attractions, Ibirapuera Park, whilst the Holiday Inn Parque Anhembi holds some of the most glamorous events in the city including the BSOP.

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As well as Ibirapuera Park, a must do is the Football Museum. Located at the historic Estadio do Pacaembu, the museum occupies 6.9 million square feet under the legendary terraces and celebrates the likes of Ronaldo, Socrates, and of course the great Pele.

The ground itself will no longer be in use after this season with Corinthians moving to the Arena Corinthians from 2014, and it’s there where the world will be focusing on come June.

Of course not everyone will have a ticket this summer, with many fans flocking to tournaments to soak in the atmosphere. And in Brazil, they’ll be some atmosphere. Street parties and fan parks are all set to make the World Cup one of the largest events in the world, and for those without tickets, head down to Vale do Anhangabau.

Situated in the very heart of the city, it will light up the bustling metropolis with light, samba, and world class soccer. It is thought the region became a popular place to meet as early as 1751 and is surrounded by the skyscrapers that are synonymous with the city.
Expect thousands to gather there over month, with the destination being the centre of all things soccer in the city.

It’s unlikely there will ever be a fan experience like Brazil 2014 again. The samba atmosphere, incredible weather, and talent such as Cristiano Ronaldo, Lionel Messi, and Neymar on display is all set to make it a special tournament, and a Sao Paulo trip you would never forget.

Are you excited for the 2014 World Cup? Let us know who you are rooting for in the comments!

Post written by Pixel Pandas.