World Cup Travel For Photographers

In just a month’s time, tourists from all over the world will be arriving in Brazil for any number of reasons related to the World Cup. For some, it’s the allure of the football itself that marks Brazil’s biggest draw. However, the event is also a great excuse for world travellers to visit one of the most fascinating countries in the world. It’s also a fine opportunity for those who record their trips through photography, because the Cup will undoubtedly offer an incredible range of uniquely photographic events and scenes. So if you’re on your way to Brazil, and you’re bringing your camera with you, here are some ideas that can help you on your way to an amazing visual chronicle of your experience.


The conversation on World Cup photography ought to begin exactly where you might expect: with Rio de Janeiro. One of the most picturesque and otherworldly destinations on the planet, Rio is a sprawling, enormous city surrounded by low mountain peaks and situated right on the water. Christ the Redeemer is the obvious landmark, but the city itself is beautiful and makes for stunning photographs from just about any angle.

Beyond Rio and other World Cup host cities, the stadiums ought to make for fairly amazing visual spectacles. Many of the World Cup’s stadiums were built or remodeled specifically for use in the summer of 2014. In fact, some will be so new that, as BBC recently detailed, they aren’t even done just yet!). That will make them some of the newest and most impressive sporting venues on the planet. In particular, the Arena da Amazonia in Manaus—the lone host city in the Amazon rainforest—is generating quite a bit of buzz as a beautiful and brand-new venue in a remote location.


There’s also the action you’ll catch within the stadiums, which of course is the real point of the World Cup! Panning shots of entire stadiums and fields are great, but if you have a nice camera or zoom, nothing beats a close-up of a marquee player in action. Betfair’s World Cup 2014 news section recently looked into some of the Cup’s potential highest-scoring stars (with Lionel Messi of Argentina expected to score the most goals). A look through these players gives you a nice set of targets for your match photography.


Beyond these marquee attractions—the biggest cities, the nicest venues, the best players—your Cup vacation photography will depend largely on where you are. In any of the eight host cities located along the coast, you can capture beautiful beach scenery, as well as festive dances and celebration at night. In Manaus, or Curitiba (another inland host city known for its parks and gardens), you’ll find gorgeous nature in the down time between matches. But the bottom line is that this event should be as spectacular from a photographer’s perspective as it is from a sports fan’s!

Author: Brendan van Son

Author: I am a travel writer and photographer from Alberta, Canada. Over my years as a travel photographer, I have visited 6 of the 7 continents and more countries than I have any desire to count. If you want to improve your skills, be sure to check out my travel photography channel on Youtube . Also, check out my profile on . to learn a little bit more about me and my work.

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