Capital of Amazonas, the North Western state of Manaus in Brazil, is home to almost 2 million residents. The majority of Amazonas’ football teams are located in Manaus so it’s therefore no surprise that 4 of the 2014 Brazil World Cup matches are being held in its newly built stadium: Arena da Amazonias.
Arena da Amazonias
Starting on the 14th of June, two days into the competition, which sees 32 national teams come together over the course of a month, England and Italy meet in Manaus’ traditionally designed Arena da Amazonias to begin the battle out of Group D. With Italy now ranked 8th and England ranked 15th in the FIFA world rankings, Italy go into the match as firm favourites. However, the game between two sides, who play two very different styles of football, promises to entertain.
Just four days later, Manaus witnesses a Group A fixture between Cameroon and Croatia, and a little over a week after the tournament kicks off, Arena da Amazonias sees another exciting match between the newly flourishing USA team and highly ranked Portugal. Finally, on the 25th June, Honduras and Switzerland play the final match taking place in 46,000 capacity area.
Situated in the Amazon rainforest, the city of Manaus itself is incredibly humid and averages 27.5 degrees Celsius in June. Visitors should pack accordingly; loose, light materials, such as cotton and linen are ideal in the tropical climate so the skin can breathe. Drinking plenty of water, carrying a map and forward planning also all contribute to having a hassle-free trip to Manaus. Booking accommodation in advance is also recommended as the main affordable hotels are close to the football stadium and will therefore book up quickly. Also, planning your trip thoroughly beforehand should limit unnecessary expenditures so that working to a budget should be simple enough. Make sure you take into account easily forgotten costs, such as travel insurance, food and beverages, and travel within the city.
Research the areas you’re staying in and travelling through and to thoroughly, as well as which areas to possibly avoid. Pick pocketing is a particularly common problem with tourist visiting Manaus and with the volume people flocking to the area for World Cup matches, petty crime may escalate. Ensure you stay vigilant and don’t keep belongings in bags behind you, where you can’t see them. Also, don’t keep valuables in your pockets and only bring what you absolutely need. Keeping your wits about you should ensure a safe, stress-free trip.