It was spectacular! The tournament was hosted across 11 Russian cities in total, and even though I only managed to visit two cities (Moscow and Volgograd), I could tell that the foreign fans were fascinated by Russia, its culture and its people, while the locals were fascinated by the foreign fans and were very happy to make new international friends.
As soon as I landed in Moscow, I got the train down to Volgograd (formerly Stalingrad) and, after making new Russian friends on that train (Russian train journeys are always an excellent way of meeting the locals), I arrived in Volgograd. I spent my days there visiting the FIFA Fan Fest, the awe-inspiring Mamaev Kurgan (the highest point in Volgograd and which saw some of the fiercest fighting of the battle for the city), taking a brief cruise on the Volga river and visiting numerous museums. Oh, there was the small matter of visiting the Volgograd Arena to watch England play against Tunisia too! England won 2-1, courtesy of a very late goal from Harry Kane!
The day after the match, I got back on the train from Volgograd to Moscow. There were supporters from the UK, Saudi Arabia, Tunisia, the USA and, of course, Russia, in my carriage of the train, so it had a very international flavour to it! I spent a few days in Moscow and met up with some friends, visited Red Square and Nikolskaya Street during the World Cup festivities (they were extremely busy with fans from all over the world singing, playing musical instruments and celebrating), VDNKH (the huge, Soviet-era exhibition park near the Cosmonautics Museum) and, amongst other sights, the Moscow FIFA Fan Fest. This was held at Sparrow Heights (Vorobyoviye Gory), in the courtyard of the stunning Moscow State University.
Do you intend to go back to Russia this year using your World Cup Fan ID?
Yes, certainly! I'll actually be making use of it again in October!
If you want to start your own Russian adventure, see our wide range of tours and excursions, or contact our travel specialists, who will be happy to assist you.
This is how one of our staff members used his Fan ID to explore Russia. How will you use yours?