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If you’re one of those lucky diehard football fans who’ve managed to get tickets to the World Cup matches, we have an ultimate travel guide for you. We worked with Turkish Airlines to bring you this guide that can help you find airports, hotels, food and more as you head to Russia for the biggest football event of the year.

Not going to Russia? Here's where to enjoy the World Cup live in the UAE.


Dates

June 14 – July 15


Where are the matches

There are 11 cities in Russia hosting matches. Moscow, Saint Petersburg, Rostov-on-Don, Sochi, Samara, Kazan, Yekaterinburg, Volgograd, Kaliningrad, Saransk and Nizhny Novgorod will play host to various matches across the tournament. Turkish Airlines flies to seven of the 11 host cities, helping us create this city-wise guide for football fans.

Use our dedicated World Cup page to get timely updates, scores, fixtures, news, predictions and speculations, and more as the teams progress. 


Moscow

Luzhniki Stadium

Fly to: Domodedovo International Airport

  • Capacity: 80,000
  • Relevant matches hosted
  • Russia v Saudi Arabia: June 14
  • Portugal v Morocco: June 20
  • Round of 16: July 1
  • Semi-final: July 11
  • Final: July 15

 

Spartak Stadium

Fly to: Sheremetyevo International Airport

  • Capacity: 45,360
  • Relevant matches hosted
  • Belgium v Tunisia: June 23
  • Round of 16: July 3

 

Moscow at a glance

Moscow may be best known for its historically and politically significant attractions, but beyond these high-profile landmarks lays a broader, buzzing metropolis that rarely seems to slow.

The Kremlin, Red Square and Saint Basil’s Cathedral tell a fascinating story of Russia’s colourful past, while the Moscow riverboat tour provides a memorable, alternative view of the city. Head to Danilovsky Market to sample deli-style international cuisines, and Tverskaya Street for row after row of retail stores. Moscow’s weather is pleasant during the summer months, making a visit to the activity-filled Gorky Park worthwhile.

Find grub at

  • Bardak, Maroseyka Street, House 6/8
  • Uryuk, various locations across the city
  • Mr. Livanets, Glinishhevskiy Lane, 3

 

You can’t miss…

Bunker 42. This vast tunnel system was built in secret under the streets of Moscow after the Soviet Union’s first series of nuclear tests to shelter Stalin and other senior figures in case of nuclear fallout.


Saint Petersburg

Saint Petersburg Stadium

Fly to: Pulkovo Airport

  • Capacity: 64,287
  • Relevant matches hosted
  • Morocco v Iran: June 15
  • Russia v Egypt:June 19
  • Round of 16: July 3
  • Semi-final: July 10
  • Third place play-off: July 14

 

Saint Petersburg at a glance

Russia’s cultural heart, Saint Petersburg stands apart for the scale of its opulent landmarks and historical attractions. The city’s elegant canal, lined by ornate plazas and elegant palaces often draws comparison with Venice, while its many parks and gardens bloom during the summer months to offer a brief retreat from urban life.

As the first structure that was built in the city, Peter & Paul Fortress on Zayachy Island is considered the birthplace of Saint Petersburg. Meanwhile, the world-famous Hermitage Museum houses a vast collection of impressive Russian art.

Find grub at

  • Navruz, Leninskiy Prospekt, 125
  • Armudu, S'ezzhinskaya, 4, 
  • Shurpa, Engelsa pr-kt, 27

 

You can’t miss…

The White Nights festival. Held this year between May 26 and July 23, the festival brings classic ballet, opera and musical performances to the city. If that’s not your thing, a series of carnivals are also held in the streets during the festival, where actors in period dress and period carriages play out historical events.


Rostov-on-Don

Rostov Arena

Fly to: Rostov-on-Don Airport

  • Capacity: 45,145
  • Relevant matches hosted
  • Uruguay v Saudi Arabia: June 20
  • Round of 16: July 2

 

Rostov-on-Don at a glance

Known informally as ‘the gateway to the Caucasus’, Rostov-on-Don marks the geographic border between Asia and Europe, and is the preferred stop off point for travellers heading on to the Black Sea. The city’s many green spaces and imposing squares make it an ideal destination to explore on foot, which leads most to the Don River – arguably the city’s most prominent landmark.

Here, visitors will find an energetic mix of food stalls, live music, and pleasant fountains. Beyond the many riverside sights, Rostov-on-Don’s rich history is a recurring feature. Bolshaya Sadovaya Street, one of the city’s oldest and most attractive locations, stands as Rostov-on-Don’s cultural hub.

Find grub at

  • Yalla, Teatralnaya Square, 3
  • Baghdad, House 42 Budennovskiy pr-kt 25
  • Chyornaya Koshka, Sholokhova Avenue, 12

 

You can’t miss…

Pushkinskaya Ulitsa. Escape the city streets and explore this serene promenade, which is at its most pleasant during the summer months. Restaurants, sculptures, and buskers pepper the route, providing a welcome distraction during a casual stroll.


Sochi

Fisht Stadium

Fly to: Sochi International Airport

  • Capacity: 47,659
  • Relevant matches hosted
  • Round of 16: June 30
  • Quarter final: July 7

 

Sochi at a glance

Already familiar to most as the host city of the 2014 Winter Olympics, Sochi is a polished seaside gem on Russia’s southern cost. The city is the largest on the ‘Russian Riviera’, so named for the area’s sophisticated, energetic resorts.

Beyond the yachts and nightlife, you’ll see that Sochi has a calmer character in the many peaceful parks dotted along the coastline – notably, Sochi National Park. And, like most major Russian cities, you won’t need to explore much to discover the area’s historical and political past. The Museum of Sochi History shines a light on the city’s maritime and military past.

Find grub at

  • Damask, Yegorova Street, 2
  • Restaurant Ulker, Yaltinskaia Street, 4
  • La Punto, Mezhdunarodnaya Street, 2/1, Olympiyski Park

 

You can’t miss…

The Lenin Mosaic. This highly Instagrammable, giant read head shot of the former Soviet Leader is hard to miss in Sochi’s Riviera Park.


Samara

Samara Arena

Fly to: Kurumoch International Airport

  • Capacity: 44,807
  • Relevant matches hosted
  • Round of 16: July 2
  • Quarter final: July 7

 

Samara at a glance

Understated Samara may not be a typical tourist magnet, but the port city’s lively atmosphere and riverside location should create an enjoyable experience for traveling football fans.

The Samara Embankment is a highlight during the sunnier months. It offers the chance to stroll and admire the view out over the Volga River, as sunbathers bronze and friends catch up at one of the various low-key cafes. Creative types will appreciate the city’s abundant art museum, while Stalin’s Bunker provides a lesson in Samara’s Soviet history.

Find grub at

  • Chuchvara, Dachnaya Street, 2
  • Vostochnii Kvartal Chaikhana, Sadovaya Street, 61
  • Café Puri, Kuibysheva Street, 79

 

You can’t miss…

Square Aleksandra Pushkina. This peaceful retreat is an ideal spot to wander and relax, crowned by the memorable view down on to the Volga River below.


Kazan

Kazan Arena

Fly to: Kazan International Airport

  • Capacity: 45,379
  • Relevant matches hosted
  • Round of 16: June 30
  • Quarter final: July 6

 

Kazan at a glance

As the intersection between European and Asian cultures, Kazan kindles its guests’ interest with its unique, multi-faceted personality. Islamic and Christian cultures merge together here, evidenced most notably by the brightly-coloured domes and striking crescents that adorn the Temple of All Religions in Kazan’s northwest.

Situated on the banks of the River Volga, the city bursts with cultural landmarks, like the Central Market that harks back to the Tatar bazars that were once commonplace.

Find grub at

  • Rubai, Profsojuznaja Street, 23/12
  • Sultanat, Nursultan Nazarbayev Street, 35/98
  • Khumo, Chernyshevskogo, 29

 

You can’t miss…

The Chak-chak Museum. This interactive museum with a difference provides an edible exploration of Tatar’s national food and drink, notably the sweet chak-chak dough balls that are served during special occasions.


Yekaterinburg

Ekaterinburg Arena

Fly to: Koltsovo Airport

  • Capacity: 35,696
  • Arab matches hosted
  • Egypt v Uruguay: June 15

 

Yekaterinburg at a glance

Few other Russian cities can boast a story like Yekaterinburg. The city is considered the birthplace of Russian industry, witnessed the fall of Russian monarchy, and flourished during the early 20th Century as the country’s cultural and scientific nucleus. Its location also marks Yekaterinburg as a strategic base for travellers making their way to the magnificent Ural Mountains.

A thriving restaurant scene reflects the city’s wider prosperity, boosted by the World Cup, which brought an upgrade to its metro line and touristic infrastructure.

Find grub at

  • Sufra, Voyevodina Street, 8
  • Nigora, Kuybysheva Street, House 55
  • Hmeli Suneli, Lenina Street, 69/10

 

You can’t miss…

The view from Vysotskiy Viewing Platform. Head up 52 floors inside the tallest Russian skyscraper outside of Moscow for a birds-eye view of Yekaterinburg’s sprawling urban landscape.


Other cities

Volgograd will be the location for Tunisia v England on June 18, before Saudi Arabia play Egypt on June 25. Kaliningrad hosts Spain v Morocco on June 25, while Saransk welcomes fans for Panama v Tunisia on June 28. Meanwhile, Nizhny Novgorod provides the backdrop for round of 16 matches on July 1, and the quarter-final on July 6.