|World Cup 2010: This event has closed and is no longer open to the public. The next FIFA World Cup was held in Brazil in 2014.|
The 2010 Fifa World Cup was held in South Africa between the 11th June and 11th July 2010. It was the first time the tournament was staged in Africa. Soccerex conventions 2007 to 2009 were also moved from Dubai to Gauteng.
Did you know?
Liverpool's Kop End at Anfield was named after Spioenkop (Spy Hill) in KwaZulu-Natal. The Lancashire Brigade comprised the largest part of the British Forces during the Battle of Spioenkop and when they returned to Britain the earth mound at Anfield (used by spectators to get a clear view of the game, before any of the stands were built) reminded them of Spioenkop
The South African Department of Home Affairs, +27 12 810-8911, have details on visa requirements. Many nationalities are exempt for visa requirements. It is advisable that, if you require a visa, you apply for it with time to spare. Home Affairs are sure to be flooded with visa requests at the last moment and turnaround times may be longer than normal.
Tickets will be made available by FIFA from the 20th February, 2009 via their website, www.fifa.com, and information will be posted here. Ticket prices for round of 16 matches range between US$ 100 to $ 200 pp (ZAR 700 to ZAR 1400). Plan on buying tickets early; fact being 2-3 million fans are expected to show up. FIFA gives accreditations for Official Travel Agencies (OTA's) across the globe to sell packages that include guaranteed tickets. This includes experienced, highly reputable international companies such as Thomson Sport in the UK and Cartan Tours and Great Atlantic Travel in the USA.
Best to plan your stay and book early.
June/July when the games are held is also one of South Africa's school holiday periods. Not only will you be competing for accommodation with a larger than normal number of international visitors, you will also have local holiday makers to contend with. Cape Town, and to a slightly lesser extend Durban, is especially popular as a holiday destination for people from Gauteng at this time of year.
A number of the venues are not generally regarded as tourist destinations and do not have the infrastructure to accommodate large numbers of visitors. It might be cheaper and easier to find accommodation a bit further afield and travel to the matches. You can, for example, quite easily drive from Pretoria to Rustenburg to watch a match and be back in Pretoria for dinner.
Prior to and during the World Cup, a number of additional international flights may also be scheduled to some of the other international airports. A new airport has been opened for Durban, King Shaka International Airport [dead link], 30 km north of Durban.
See Air travel in South Africa for detailed information.
Gautrain, South Africa 80-kilometre mass rapid transit railway system in Gauteng Province, South Africa that will link Johannesburg, Pretoria, and OR Tambo International Airport.
The Gautrain rail network will be 80 kilometers long. Gautrain is connected to other forms of public transport:
Taxis Buses Current Metrorail public train system
Traveling at a speed of 160 kilometers per hour, Gautrain will only take 40 minutes to travel between Johannesburg and Pretoria, but this link will not be finished for 2010. From Sandton to the OR Tambo International Airport it will only take 10 to 20 minutes. Commuters on this route can check in their luggage at the Sandton Station before arriving at OR Tambo International Airport.
The cost for traveling on the Johannesburg/Pretoria route will be between R13.00 and R29.00, depending on distance. The cost of traveling to a station with the Gautrain Bus Link will be between R4.00 and R11.00.
There will be security cameras and security guards on patrol in the stations and the parking areas. Only passengers who have an electronic ticket will have access to Gautrain?s stations and the parking areas. Motorists can travel to the stations and leave their cars at the safe parking bays that are being built at the stations. Parking at the station could cost around R6.00 a day.
Ten station locations have been identified:
- Johannesburg Park Station - (underground station)
- Rosebank - (underground station)
- Sandton - (underground station)
- Marlboro - (station at grade)
- Midrand - (station at grade)
- Centurion - (station on structure)
- Pretoria - (station at grade)
- Hatfield - (station at grade)
- Rhodesfield - (station on structure)
- OR Tambo International Airport - (station on structure)
South African commuters busses: Golden Arrow
Long distance bus services in South Africa:
Greyhound Citiliner Translux MegaBus
For distances up to about 400 km, a rental car generally your best option as public transport is limited and a car will give you the most freedom to go where you want when you want. The road infrastructure in South Africa is generally very good.
The following cities will play host to matches during the tournament:
The following cities will host training camps for the competing nations:
- Free State Stadium, Corner Att Horak Ave and 1st Avenue, Bloemfontein (From the N1 take the Nelson Mandela Ave (N8) offramp and follow this (will become Zastron Str) until 1st Ave, turn right into 1st Ave and follow this until Att Horak Ave, turn right and the stadium is on your right.). Capacity: 40,000. A rather old (1952) stadium being upgraded.
- African Renaissance Stadium, Greenpoint, Cape Town. Capacity: 70,000. A new stadium under construction.
- [dead link]Moses Mabhida Stadium. (King's Park), Jacko Jackson Drive, Durban. Capacity: 70,000. A new stadium that will replace King's Park Stadium.
- Soccer City, Nasrec Road, Nasrec, Johannesburg, ☎ . Capacity: 94,700. An existing stadium being upgraded from a capacity of 90,000.
- Ellis Park, Staib St, Doornfontein, Johannesburg (From the M1, take exit 13B Johannesburg (M31 Harrow road), follow this to Currey St where you turn right. The stadium will be in front of you), ☎ . Capacity: 60,000. An existing stadium being upgraded from a capacity of 55,000. Ellis Park is the cultural home of South African Rugby.
- Mbombela Stadium, Nelspruit. Capacity: 40,000 (Under construction)
- Peter Mokaba Stadium, Polokwane. New stadium. Capacity: 45, 000. Building started April 2007 and is expected to be completed in March 2009.
- Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium, Port Elizabeth. (Under construction)
- Loftus Versfeld Stadium, Kirkness st, Pretoria (From the N1, take exit 141 Pretoria (M6 Lynnwood road) towards Pretoria city center. Follow Lynnwood until Kirkness St where you turn right. The stadium is on your right). Capacity: 50,000
- Royal Bafokeng Stadium, Rustenburg (From the N4, take the R24 offramp towards Rustenburg city. Turn left to continu on the R104. North of town, turn right into R565 towards Sun City, after 5km on your right hand side.). Capacity: 40,000
An unofficial self-updating Google Earth Placemark is available for those travelers who want to see where the stadiums are.
- [dead link]Cool Britannia, Cape Town International Convention Center - where to view games when you can't be at the stadium (On the Paarl, Simon’s Town or Strand lines look out for Cool Britannia Trains.). 11am - 4am. Capacity: 10,000
Take care not to pay exuberant prices for counterfeit 2010 World Cup merchandise. The SA Revenue Service reported on January 27, 2007 that they have already confiscated more than R2 million worth of counterfeit goods displaying the 2010 logo. The goods included kit bags, football balls and socks.
- [dead link]Oriental Plaza, Johannesburg. An Oriental market place where you will probably find those club shirts, scarves, hats and flags that you forgot to pack.
South Africa is a country with many things to do apart from watching the soccer:
- Go on Safari - All of the Big Five can be seen in natural surroundings in South Africa. The biggest and most famous safari park in the country (and possibly the world) is The Kruger National Park (located to the north east of Nelspruit, on the border with Mozambique and Zimbabwe), although one downside is that it is so large that it requires several days to see the whole park. Addo Elephant National Park (near Port Elizabeth) is a smaller alternative, although you won't see lions, and Hluhluwe-Umfolozi Park (near Durban) is another good park. Also see National Parks and African fauna and flora for more information.
- Check out South Africa's colourful past - Robben Island, township tours...
- See whales, penguins, sharks
- Check out ancient San rock art
- Play golf
- Horse riding is a popular recreational activity
- South Africa has many famous hiking trails
- Flower Connexion, 65 on Fourth, 4th Avenue, Linden, Johannesburg, ☎ . Hosting many different workshops during the World Cup using South African flowers. Guided tours will also be undertaken to the biggest flower auction in South Africa.
Important telephone numbers
From a fixed line
- 107 - Emergency
- 10111 - Police 
- 10177 - Ambulance
From a mobile phone
- 112 - Emergency
Use sunscreen, wear a hat, drink lots of liquids.
June/July is the middle of winter in South Africa, but temperatures can still be quite high during the day and you may suffer from sunburn when out in the open for extended periods of time. This is especially true for the Highveld (Johannesburg, Pretoria, Rustenburg) and northern venues (Nelspruit and Polokwane). Also see the section on sunburn and sun protection.
Also read stay healthy in South Africa for other important health related issues.
Local media will from time to time carry articles about stadium progress, infrastructure upgrades and possible problems.
- Sunday Times. National
- The Herrald. Eastern Cape, will carry specific for Port Elizabeth
- [dead link]CapeTownMagazine.com. Cape Town's internet magazine, with much 2010 info on Cape Town and the other World Cup cities
- IOL. Online face of a number of national and regional newspapers
- Shine 2010. Online portal of good news around the 2010 FIFA World Cup
- Shine 2010 - Home of the 2010 World Cup good news. Stadium update, ticketing and other 2010 World Cup related news, blog, podcast, and SA info
- Emirates 2010 FIFA World Cup Packages. Official Sponsor, World Cup Travel Packages etc...
- fifa Blog. Read the latest information on World Cup Blog Soccer and World Cup South Africa.
Whilst not soaking up the culture in SA and enjoying the soccer, there are many countries nearby which are well worth exploring:
- Lesotho, the Kingdom in the Sky is a haven for outdoor pursuits: hiking, pony trekking, off roading...
A bit further out, but popular with South African travelers and easy to reach by plane are