Experiencing Russia during the World Cup 2018 was definitely a one-of-a-time adventure! We do realize that traveling during this time is not necessarily reflecting how the country is on a regular basis. But we also after realized that this might just be an amazing time to see both the Russian culture and people in combination with the sheer diversity and party of an event such as the World Cup! We always dreamed of going to a World Cup and when both our countries (Mexico & Germany) were bound to play against each other we couldn’t resist to eventually go and see for ourselves what its like to be part of such an event!
The first stop of our Russia World Cup 2018 tour was the capital city of Moscow. This was also the venue of the match that we would attend: Mexico vs. Germany.
The city is very bombastic and you can find attractions and iconic landmarks around every corner. The must-see spots are definitely the famous Kremlin with its monumental architecture, the Red Square, the Bolshoi Theatre as well as the iconic St. Basil’s Cathedral.
Imagine visiting all these stunning places with the city packed full of football fans from all over the world. Rocio had a great time because most of these fans came from Mexico! Julian eventually found 4! German fans as a small backup.
Where to stay? Watch out for our latest accommodation reviews and find the best place tot stay for your travels!
Game Day - Luzhniki Stadium
The day eventually came where the match was happening. We could reach the stadium with the famous Moscow metro and found ourselves in the middle of two competing fan crowds which was quite an experience.
The Luzhniki Stadium has a capacity of 81,000 people and it was a fantastic atmosphere. The majority of fans came from Mexico and you could hear their enthusiasm throughout the entire game. Eventually, Mexico won the match 1-0 and at least Julian had to live with that defeat for the day! Despite the outcome of the match it was a very emotional and ecstatic experience for both of us! Singing the national anthem along with so many people was definitely amazing.
After staying in Moscow for a few days we traveled further up north to the Baltic port city of Saint Petersburg. We did not have any tickets for any match (we did visit the fan fest though!) but really enjoyed staying there.
Must-see attractions here are the lavish church of the Savior of the Spilled Blood, the State Heritage Museum, the Winter Palace and the Palace Square (to name a few). The city is definitely more manageable to explore than Moscow. It also has bit more charm and its location by the sea makes it even more attractive.
We really enjoyed staying here and had an amazing time exploring the city both by foot and boat and can highly recommend anyone to visit when traveling around Russia.
Food Tip! Have a nice lunch or dinner in a restaurant called Mari Vanna – a great place for local cuisine and a very interesting interior!