Sporting Events Worth Traveling for (Even if you’re not a Sports Fan) + Win a Trip to Europe
Leah Walker March 7, 2017

Obviously you know me as a travel writer, but what seems like many moons ago, I was a university athlete, high school basketball coach, and a ravenous sports fan. From American football to soccer and golf to tennis, much of my leisure time revolved around sports. Now, not so much, unless sports coincide with travel. Attending the summer Olympics, the Kentucky Derby in Louisville, the White Turf Races in St. Moritz, and the Palio in Siena, remain on my to-do list, along with playing golf at St. Andrews.

I’ve attended NCAA basketball Final Fours, several NBA and NFL playoff games, PGA tournaments, ATP tournaments, countless NCAA football games, and Eurocup soccer matches. I’m a believer that you don’t have to be a jock to enjoy watching live sports. Attending is not only a look into a destination’s culture and traditions, but sport often is the setting for a big ol’ party. Thus, here are four sporting events worth traveling for {even if you’re not a sports fan}.

Indianapolis 500

In the pits of the Indy 500

Come the month of May, the eyes of the racing world are on Indianapolis. Since 1911, the Indianapolis Motor Speedway has played host to “The Greatest Spectacle in Racing,” otherwise known as the Indianapolis 500. On the last Sunday of the month, in conjunction with Memorial Day weekend, thirty-three of the best drivers compete for the Borg-Warner Trophy, one of the most coveted prizes in sports. Along with the trophy, the winner also wins part of the approximately $12,000,000 purse.

Kissing the bricks of the finish line is an Indy tradition.

The size of the Indianapolis Motor Speedway is massive. Supposedly, Yankee Stadium, the Roman Colosseum, the Vatican and Churchill Downs all fit inside the track’s oval. The complex also has an 18-hole golf course, Hall of Fame Museum, twenty-six bridges, six tunnels and 220 acres of the grandstands.

It’s not a party until someone gets sick in the infamous Snake Pit.

The actual race is just part of what the Indianapolis 500 entails. The pageantry of the weekend is akin to Pasadena’s Rose Bowl, combined with the tradition of the Kentucky Derby and the party atmosphere of the Super Bowl. The Indy 500 is far from just a race, one to which television doesn’t do justice. From private boxes to tents, there are numerous ways to party at the Speedway. The inside of turn three is known as the Snake Pitt. The debauchery that takes place there is stuff of legends. Sponsored by Coors Light, this party within a party within a sporting event is not for the novice partier. Then there’s the VIP experience—police-escorted bus, golf carts, starting line access, and a private suite filled with plenty of race day food and alcoholic refreshments. Needless to say, you can guess which experience I enjoyed most at the Indy 500.

FIFA World Cup

Hanging out with Japanese soccer fans

Lucky me, I was living in Rio de Janerio when Brazil was hosting the 2014 FIFA World Cup. Unlucky me, I didn’t actually attend a match. But what I did do is carouse with the hundreds of thousands of visitors from around the world on Ipanema and Copacabana Beaches.

Spanish and a single Chilean fan party before their teams play.

The World Cup is more than a massive sports-themed party. It’s a connector. People from around the globe are brought together by their love of football and country–a rainbow of nations together hoisting beers and reliving the day’s matches. It’s not about politics, religion, or country borders. Between the enthusiasm, costumes, national pride, and alcohol, the fans might be the best thing about going to the World Cup.

Henley Royal Regatta

There are people who actually watch the competition.

If a more civilized sport is more your cup of tea, look no further than the Henley Royal Regatta. Held annually in Henley-on-Thames, England, this rowing competition began in 1839. During the five-day event, thousands of revelers line the Thames River to watch crew clubs and university teams row, row, row their boats.

Doing my best not to get kicked out of Stewards’ Enclosure

Yes, this is a legendary and prestigious sporting tradition, but it’s also one of the UK’s social events of the season. Swanky tents require tickets, and Pimm’s and Champagne flow like the Thames. If you’re especially well connected, then Stewards’ Enclosure is where you’ll enjoy the festivities.

Preppy overload going on at the HRR.

With a very strict dress code, men don colorful suits and ties, while ladies adorn their heads with giant hats or fascinators. Forget the short dresses; knees must be covered. Ignore these rules and you’ll be cast out among the commoners to drink at the Regatta Enclosure.

Doudou Festival

Barely room enough to breathe at the Doudou Festival

Alright, so Ducasse de Mons, otherwise known as the Doudou Festival, isn’t a sporting event, per se. BUT, I’d argue that’s its as taxing on the body as any marathon. Held in Mons, Belgium, this mega-party occurs on Trinity Sunday, about a month and a half after Easter. The madness began in the mid-1300s, and like so many things from the Middle Ages, this tradition came about because of a plague. You’ll have to read up on the entire history, but it involves the shrine of Waltrude, bones, Saint George, and a dragon. Though the Doudou Festival was {and still is} rooted in the Catholic religion, it’s morphed into a giant party. And when Belgians party, you know there is plenty of beer involved.

‘Saint George’ is actually a descendant of the original Saint George.

The main event is known as Lumeçon, which is a fight on the main square of Mons between good {Saint George} and evil {the dragon}. Thousands upon thousands of adrenaline and alcohol-filled people pour into the square to watch Saint George on horseback battle a 10-meter long dragon. The beast’s tail is made from horsehair and considered good luck to get a strand.

These guys slam air-filled pig bladders onto the ground for an hour.

Stay with me here; it’s about to get really strange. Chinchins represent dogs and ‘protect’ Saint George and his horse. Meanwhile, the dragon is ‘protected’ by little devils armed with air-filled pig bladders on sticks. Symbolic and carefully choreographed, this battle goes on for an astonishing hour.

Absolute exhaustion

If carrying a dragon and swinging a pig’s bladder doesn’t sound sporty enough, just take a look at the crowd. Mostly shirtless, drunk men are smashed together like sardines, each trying to grab a piece of the dragon’s tail, as it swings over the crowd’s heads. Police are struggling to keep rambunctious revelers out of the arena. Meanwhile, the dragon is swirling, Saint George’s horse is pacing, and the little devils are smacking the Chinchins with swine innards. Honestly, it’s one of the strangest, yet most riveting events I’ve ever seen.

Win a Trip to Paris and Cologne

So, what exactly is the point of this post? Rail Europe, my favorite and only resource for European train tickets, and Thalys are giving away a trip for two to Paris, France and Cologne, Germany for the Ice Hockey World Championships held in May 2017. The winner and one lucky friend will receive this fabulous prize:

  • two round trip economy flights from Canada to Paris; six nights hotel stay at three-star hotels {three nights in Paris and three nights in Cologne}; first-class tickets on Thalys trains between Paris and Cologne; and two tickets to the World Hockey Championships in Paris

This awesome giveaway is only available for Canadian residents {excluding Quebec}. But don’t fret; share this opportunity with all of your Canadian friends, and make them bring you as their +1. That’s a heck of an idea, eh?

It’s super easy to enter. Just comment on this post telling me which sporting events are worth traveling for {even if you’re not a sports fan}. Tweet and like on Facebook for additional chances to win. The contest closes on Friday, March 24, 2017.

In addition, Rail Europe is offering $25 off bookings of Thalys tickets*** for both Canadians AND Americans. When checking out, use the promo code THALYSLEAH. Hurry, the offer is only good from March 7 through April 6, 2017. Bookings must total least $100 and be made on on or

Paris in the springtime is lovely. I hope to see you here. Bonne chance!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

***The promo code THALYSLEAH is valid for $25 off Rail Europe bookings of Thalys tickets, with a minimum booking amount of $100. The promo code is valid for applicable bookings made from March 7, 2017 through 5:00pm ET on April 6, 2017. Offer is subject to availability and subject to change or extension without notice. No adjustments can be made on prior purchases. Promotional fares are non-exchangeable and non-refundable. This promo code cannot be combined with any other promo code on Rail Europe’s website.

This post is courtesy of Rail Europe and Thalys. Also, there are affiliate links included, meaning I make a small commission if you make a purchase through my links. It costs you nothing more, but helps keep me stocked in French wine {and a roof over my head}.

Leah Walker

Leah has a marketing management company specializing in strategy, content creation and implementation for luxury brands and destinations. She's also a luxury travel and food writer who has as many stories as she does shoes. Leah documents her experiences whether that's in the lap of luxury or riding through a swamp in an airboat. She sometimes freelances and has contributor/editor roles with The Daily Meal, USA Today 10 Best, Bonjour Paris, France Today, Luxe Beat Magazine, Four Seasons Magazine, Forbes Travel Guide, and is a travel and wine ambassador for Atout France USA. Leah's lived in Paris for four years, and was awarded additional time with a Passeport Talent visa renewal. Though, her talent for speaking French is abysmal.


  1. I don’t have a sports preference but anytime you can see a major team play in front of their hometown it is so worth the trip!


    2. Anything you’re passionate about is worth travelling for! I would travel for almost any sport, especially world championships where you can really see the patriotism of each country!

    3. I’m still enjoy playing hockey at age 67 with a great group of guys!! If I’m lucky I can bring one with me to Paris to see the World Hockey Championships!!

      1. I would love to travel to any place they travel to in Netherlands, Belgium, Germany and France. What a great chance to win. Thanks

  2. Hey Leah, you forgot the famous few: 24 hours of Le Mans and the Monaco Grand Prix… tut tut. Would have invited you for the grand prix this year… but we are snubbed 😉 😛

      1. I’d travel to Europe to watch either live hockey game and tennis…Love Europe! I love Paris!, So much to see and do!! The city of Love…

  3. I think the horse shows at Spruce Meadows in Calgary are worth travelling for — several road trips with my daughter made for loads of fun!

  4. I think hockey is worth travelling for….! Although I love travelling so much I’d travel for beer pong!!!

  5. As a proud Canadian and loyal dedicated TML Fan – HOCKEY is definitely THE sporting event worth traveling for {even if you’re not a sports fan}. The atmosphere at these games is contagious and you can’t help but get into the game!

  6. Thalys travels to dreamy Paris!
    Also Ice Hockey is the absolute best! Nashville (where I’m from and live still) is home to the Predators!
    They’re amazing! I also love the Maple Leafs and the Ducks though!

  7. FIFA and the Ice Hockey World Championships are definitely worth the trip! But so are La Liga football games! It’s not always about the sport but rather the ambiance and company! 🙂

  8. My fingers are crossed!
    I love attending sporting events anywhere I can. It gives a bit of insight into the culture.
    As a Canadian hockey is always worth traveling for!

  9. All sports events are worth traveling for just to eat in the concession stands! I wonder what the food will be like at the championships, will they have Tim Hortons coffee for the Canadians?

    Just kidding, coffee in France is so much better.

  10. Soccer and hockey are two sports I’d travel for as I played soccer for 25 years and my Uncle played professional hockey during the 70’s & 80’s. There is a whole different vibe to international games!

  11. I am so happy to have found your site! I would travel to any/all of these. Not sure I can pick one but certainly intrigued by the Kentucky Derby or a Stanley Cup game.

  12. Obviously Ice Hockey World Championships are worth traveling for! Gareth and I went to the Rugby world cup while we were in New Zealand. You can’t beat the atmosphere in any live match!

  13. I’m Canadian! How great would it be to watch some hockey in other beautiful countries. Ehhh!

  14. The Saskatchewan Roughriders are my hometown CFL team and there is nothing like being in the stadium for a hometown game!! Definitely worth traveling the 7+ hours it would take for me to drive there now that we live in Alberta. And also Thalys travels to Paris.

  15. I’m not usually a big sports fan but I do think it’s interesting to occasionally go and see a big sporting event where it’s a particularly good cultural insight into the place you are visiting. I’d love to see Baseball in the US or Sumo wrestling in Japan, for example!

  16. I’d travel for the Olympics. Having experienced the atmosphere in Vancouver during the 2010 games, I’m itching to go to another games. I went to see sports I never thought I’d like, such as speed skating.

  17. Too bad I can’t enter the contest, but I did have to comment on Doudou Festival. OMG – that is the most bizarre. Thanks for the read. I am not a fan of crowds or drunks, so I probably wouldn’t attend, but I am glad you did and share it with us.

  18. I love traveling for sporting events! We’ve been to baseball games all over the US, have traveled to London several times just for the NFL International games held each year, gone to the Monaco Grand Prix, and various world ski championships.

    The Palio in Siena is on my to do list too – never went despite living in Italy for seven years!

  19. I’m not Canadian but will share the posts with my friends – what a fab opportunity – especially to see the ice hockey! I’m not a huge sports fan but I do love traveling to sporting events for the atmosphere of the game and it’s a great way to mingle with locals when you’re experiencing a new place 🙂

  20. Love seeing soccer when whichever country I’m in is playing in the World Cup. Olympics are always special, such a great feeling in the air (as there was here in Vancouver in 2010!). And cheering my mum while she ran the NYC Marathon was something I’ll never forget.

  21. Thalys travels to Cologne! I’d love to travel for one of the Six Nations rugby games. (Or the Abu Dhabi GP – the sunset views are supposed to be incredible!)

  22. I would love to check out sumo wrestling in Japan- I definitely think that is a unique sport that would be an interesting experience and worth travelling to see.

  23. This would certainly be an amazing prize! I’m Canadian and qualify to enter. 🙂 We’ve been to Serie A soccer matches in Italy and of course many events at Vancouver’s 2010 Winter Olympics. They are always very exciting and fun to see.

  24. I’ve been to a few events at the Vancouver Olympics and am heading to an NHL game tonight to see Sidney Crosby. The Henley Regatta has always had appeal.

  25. So many are worth it, but I love watch hockey abroad most of all. I’d also love to attend a match of a the nation I’m visiting’s favourite sport, to see how the locals really behave when watching their team. : )

  26. I think it’s worth traveling to see rare, one of a kind events. Ottawa just hosted the Red Bull Crashed Ice world championships and it was incredible. It was nearly 30 degrees below zero and the whole city was out – you just can’t see events like this every day!

  27. Combining the pleasures of sports and travel is really a great experience. We have not done that so far, but would love to. It would be wonderful to say combine our travel plans with events like the Olympic! Being cricklet fans, probably we may want to visit Australia or England during a test match.

  28. I actually just travelled last weekend to attend my first NHL game with my brother! I’ve never been much into watching any kind of sports on TV, but there’s something different about seeing it live – and about sharing the experience with my hockey-fan brother 🙂

  29. I’ve always wanted to go to the Kentucky Derby or the Yukon Quest dog race. But I also love a good play off final hockey game whether it be Junior A, WHL or NHL.

  30. Any of the Grand Slam tennis tournaments would be fabulous to attend, but the Australia Open would be especially welcome in the middle of a cold winter! After that, I would take in as many Australian football games as I could manage. But international hockey, like soccer and the Olympics, is extra special, with all the national pride on display and shared, white-knuckle moments. Plus it’s lovely to see people from other countries who are just as mad as we are about hockey! Thalys brings travellers to Amsterdam, Brussels and Paris, to sporting events, among other things.

  31. I was lucky enough to see the Grand Prix in Monaco one year – overlooking the French Rivera and million dollar yachts. Worth every Euro! Otherwise, going “home” to Melbourne to watch North Melbourne play at Aussie Rules at the MCG is my idea of bliss.

  32. well I will admit that i am not a big sports fan but you make is sound fun! And one of my fondest memories is going with my dad to see the Islanders play. Great contest!

  33. Hi Leah! I am thinking about travelling to Düsseldorf for the start of the Tour description France. That’d be worth the trip. 🙂

  34. I’m always up for travelling to alternative sports events — I went to the Haka Pei competition on Easter Island last month (dudes in loincloths sliding down a massive hill on banana leaves, and it was totally worth it. 🙂

  35. Name one city that Thalys travels to! Thalys travels to London!

    I would love to see team Canada world jr anywhere in Europe.

  36. I would love to travel to a Super Bowl hopefully to a warm city and I think Paris is one place Id like to travel to just like Thalys did

  37. Dear Leah, I have a few … 😊

    • Watching my 1. FC Köln at home in sold-out 40-thousand+ stadium ⚽️
    • Watching BVB Dortmund in their sold-out 80-thousand+ stadium ⚽️
    • 🇨🇦 Scottie’s Tournament of Hearts (national women’s curling championship)
    • 🇨🇦 Tim Horton’s Brier (national men’s curling championship)
    • FIFA Football World Cup ⚽️
    • UEFA European Football Championship ⚽️
    • Rugby World Cup 🏉
    • All Blacks 🇳🇿 vs Wallabies 🇦🇺, in All-Tasman rivalry 🏉
    • The Ashes Series, in England or in Australia 🏏
    • 🇦🇺 Boxing Day Test in Melbourne, at the (MC)G 🏏
    • 🇦🇺 AFL Grand Final, also at the G 🏉

  38. Major League Baseball’s World Series is worth traveling to and it would make for a good blog post.

  39. The Olympics are always worth traveling for! I haven’t had the opportunity yet, but would love to one day!

  40. My dream sporting event worth travelling for is Wimbledon. One of the many cities Thalys travels to is Paris. Thanks for the chance. 🙂

  41. I would love to travel to Calgary Stampede. That would be a dream come true. Thalys travels to the Indy 500

  42. The Grey Cup is so much fun even if you are not a football fan. I’ve made lifelong friends from all over Canada after attending 20 of them. I would kill to go to the Olympics or the Masters.

    Thalys travels to Paris and I hope I do too. LOL

  43. I think it’d be worth travelling to see a soccer game in Europe, the crowd alone would make it an amazing experience!

  44. I have always watched the world hockey on TV but to actually be there would be great especially if Canada is playing. Watching Canada play hockey is always worth traveling for.

  45. Anything involving travel piques my interest. A unique sporting event would make it even more of an adventure and I’d be game for anything! I’d love to attend the Olympics or go to Wimbledon – both are on the bucket list.

  46. Thalys travels to Paris. I love travelling out of town for playoff baseball, basketball and hockey games. It’s usually the most emotional time, and when I get attached, I love being in the heart of the action, even if I don’t find tickets for the game and have to sit at the bar next to the stadium (has happened!).

  47. I think a football game in Europe is worth traveling for! Spain, Italy, etc. I need to see a match between two powerhouse teams (i.e. Milan vs Barcelona, etc).
    Thalys travels to Paris!

  48. Thalys travels to Paris! And I would love to travel to see the world cup in person I have been watching it every 4 years since elementary school.

  49. I wish I could answer this question from experience but I have honestly never traveled for sports before. I think anything would most likely be worth it. I would like to see, live, some of the sports I don’t get to watch. For example Cricket or Polo or Tennis or Volleyball. Even Gymnastics or Aquatic events! As a proud Canadian gal, I would never say no to Hockey though!

  50. I travel for Fifa World Cup. Thank you for the kindness, the contest, and generosity. 🙂 Pick me,

  51. Any where in Europe would be awesome, but Paris holds my heart and anything with F1 would be a bonus.

  52. Thalys travels to Paris, France.

    Worth travelling for? The World Cup for sure. I’d also put the Superbowl on there. Not just for the game, but the atmosphere surrounding the game would be awesome.

  53. I’ll name two that I would love to travel to, to cover my bases ;), Thalys goes to Paris and Amsterdam! I’d travel for hockey, or tennis…I’d love to see Wimbledon. Thanks Leah!!

  54. Although I would like to visit Rio sometime in the near future based on your experiences.

  55. Definitely my bucket list is to attend a superbowl down in the US. Even though as a Canadian, we have CFL, there is something about NFL and football in the US that is so much better.

  56. Thalys goes to Paris… which is where my lovely wife and I would love to see the World Hockey Championships!!

  57. “Name one city that Thalys travels to”- Paris. I’d travel anywhere to see almost anything.

  58. Thalys travels to Paris. I was there for the first time last September, and I definitely need to get back to Europe! So much adventuring to do!

  59. Thalys travels to England. What an amazing opportunity. Would love to take my son to see hockey on an international level

  60. I loved that you travelled to Henley-on-Thames, England to enjoy sports. I would love to travel see the Grand Prix in Monaco . That would be a dream

  61. Thalys travels to Cologne. And it’s always worthwhile going to Wimbledon. Even if it’s just for the Pimms :0

  62. Hockey is worth traveling anywhere in the world for !! PLus i love Europe !! Fingers crossed

  63. The Grand Prix would be awesome but also hockey since my province is where so many great world class players have come from.

  64. Travelling for a big event like the Ice Hockey World Championship would be amazing and worth travelling for. My husband would consider it like a second honeymoon:)

  65. Thalys travels to Paris, which she now calls her home. I think UFC is worth travelling for! Thanks for the contest!

  66. Great blog…and great contest. Love Canadian football and the Grey Cup, but any event featuring a dragon…AND beer is worth attending. Sign me up for the Doudou Festival

  67. One of the cities it goes to is Cologne, Germany. My friend is from there and I’d love to go see them, would be for the first time.

  68. Hello
    The beautiful lthing about about Canada is we love all sports.
    So that being said I would travel for car racing

  69. Any major sports event is worth travelling for if you’re a sports fanatic like me! Out of your list, my first choice would be the Fifa world cup. Overall, I would absolutely love to go watch the IIHF hockey world championships. It’s on my bucket list. Also on my bucket list is the winter olympics!

  70. Canada’s Grey Cup of Football is an event worth watching for the non-sports fan, even. For a larger extravaganza, try the Superbowl–this year’s was amazing, including the game itself!

  71. One of the cities Thalys travels to is Amsterdam! Would love to see and support Team Canada!!!

  72. Cologne is my choice to see the Ice Hockey Championships!! I saw the Ice Hockey Champs in Sweden a few years ago and it was fabulous, I’ve never been to Germany so that’s where I would Love to go!!

  73. I’m s baseball fan so I’d travel for the World Series. I’d also like to have been with you for the Indy 500 too.

  74. I’m not a huge soccer/football fan but FIFA would be so cool to see live! To experience the city in the midst of a FIFA finals game would be insane. Also, The Olympics are the ultimate sporting event worth travelling to!

  75. Would love to watch some hockey abroad! I had the awesome pleasure of watching some Olympic hockey live at the 2010 Vancouver Olympics and it was great! Thanks for the chance 🙂

  76. Thalys travels to so many places but I would love to travel from Amsterdam to Brussels and on to Paris, enjoying a few stops along the way! If i could see some once in a lifetime sporting event, it would have to be the French Open in Paris.

  77. I think that Wimbledon is worth travelling for. I’ve always dreamed of donning my best white outfit and attending a match!

  78. Monaco Grand Prix or Fifa would be amazing!! I have never been to Europe and it would be a dream come true! Woo Hoo!

  79. World hockey championship is always fun to watch on TV, but to be there, live, in Europe would be great!

  80. Thalys travels to Ireland. Red Bull Crashed Ice was an amazing sport here in Ottawa. Loved it.

  81. Thalys travels to Paris. I enjoy speed skating and would love to travel to a world class speed skating event.

  82. I would say car racing, baseball, football, hockey, etc! All of the events in your article sound worthy booking a trip!

  83. Leah, Hockey is Canada’s game! Certainly, we would travel for any hockey, basketball, football, soccer (FIFA), lacrosse, tennis, figure skating and swim events! World Hockey in Paris would be amazing! Thanks for offering this contest entry opportunity!

  84. Thalys goes to Paris, France and I would love to go there to see the World Championships this May – it would be such a fantastic trip!

  85. Experiencing a fantastic hockey game, and supporting your country and/or favourite team, is worth racing to do, wherever the action is!

  86. Love the events of Hockey, Figure Skating and Tennis . Have been to the Olympics and to World Figure skating events. My family and I hve friends who have competed in World Cup and Olympic Events.

  87. Hockey! Anytime, Anywhere!! I am a huge sports fan and would love to see any game but Hockey would be my favourite!

  88. INDIANAPOLIS 500 IS TOP OF OUR LIST. Our family comes from Belgium, but we have never heard of the Doudou festival.

  89. I’m a big sport fan and I would travel for hockey, ski, golf and baseball too. Thank you Leah

  90. I have always wanted to go down under to watch the Australian Open tennis championship. That is at the top of my bucket list. The second on my list is to travel by train, with the help of Thalys, to Paris and watch the World Hockey Championships.

  91. Thalys travels to Argentina and I would die for the chance to see the Ice Hockey Championships.

  92. I think Thalys goes to the Indianapolis 500! I would love to see that hockey championship in Europe, it would be the trip of a lifetime!

  93. I am Canadian so I believe that Hockey is totally worth traveling for. And I know that Thayls travels to Paris.

  94. I would definitely LOVE to visit for the FIFA World Cup! The World Hockey Championship would also be amazing to see in person!

    Thank you for the opportunity!!

  95. I’m more interested in travelling somewhere to see a concert. But I’d like to travel to see a major soccer ⚽️ (football) event in Europe as it would be incredible and I’ve never been to Europe!

  96. Thalys goes to Paris. I would love to travel to see the Grand National. I have always loved horse racing and this is the ultimate horse race!

  97. I think the Super Bowl is the best one day sporting event. I have been lucky enough to go to one in New Orleans. Great game and great city.

  98. I think hockey and soccer sporting events are worth traveling for.

    Paris is a city that Thalys travels to.

  99. The one and only sporting event worth travelling for, in my opinion, is the Super Bowl, wherever it may take place. P-A-R-T-Y!!!!

  100. I had to think about this one and not be so North American centric about it. I’m not much of a “sports fan ” but there are 2 things I will go out of my way to catch, every 4 years the world goes crazy for the world cup of soccer and the other event is also every 4 years and I defy you to miss a complete Olympic games. These are both ” trip worthy ” events that I would go anywhere to attend

  101. Fantastic prize to go to Europe, but seeing a top-level sporting event would be a dream!

  102. Fantastic article! Any sporting event is worth travelling for – would love to go to Ascot for the racing (and see all the hats)

  103. Major sporting events worth traveling for { Summer Olympics, World Championships, Winter Olympics, Eurocup soccer matches, Hockey All-Star games}

  104. I would love to see a proper European football match! Doesn’t matter where. Just to be a part of the crowds!


  106. Thalys goes to Amsterdam, one of my favourite cities to visit! I’d travel anywhere for a great sporting event… ; )

  107. Thalys travels to Paris. Wow !!! We would Love the chance to cheer on our Canadian teams. Thank you !!!

  108. What sporting event would be worth making an effort travel wise? To answer this question I would have to answer another one: what country would be worth traveling to? Japan. It must be the sumo championships for me lol

  109. The superbowl is worth traveling for, but Paris. i would have to say the Tour de france

  110. I want to see the guys with the Pig Bladders (Chinchins?) as it looks weird but would love to see how you win and what happens to them! They look like a bunch of grapes gone bad!

  111. I want to see the guys with the Pig Bladders (Chinchins?) as it looks weird but would love to see how you win and what happens to them! They look like a bunch of grapes gone bad! Also I would travel with Thayls to the Indy 500 as always wanted to go to it!

  112. Which sporting events are worth traveling for, you ask? Although we are hockey nuts at our house, we would find any high-stakes match-up worthy of traveling to watch!

  113. I would love to travel for the World Junior Hockey Championship in December and January. Go Canada!

  114. I love hockey and it only gets better when you travel to a fantastic country to go watch it ! Let’s go Canada !!!

  115. Thalys travels to UK, London. My husband and I would love to travel to The Ice Hockey World Championships, we love hockey.

  116. The World Cup, Euro Cup, or Champions League championship is definitely worth travelling for!

  117. Thalys travels to Paris, of course!

    I love traveling for any sport, mostly because I enjoy seeing the different stadiums and arenas. My wife and I have attended baseball, football, and hockey games in several different countries.

  118. I have heard the Grey Cup is great to attend. There are so many parties and events in addition to the game, and it has a real Canadian flair!

  119. I would love to travel any where in Europe never been any where there . I am actually a huge fan of hockey I love and support my home team edmonton oilers.

  120. Hockey is always worth travelling for!!! This would be a total dream come to life for me. Thank you Leah!!

  121. I would travel anywhere for golf…Thalys travels to Paris and would be happy to go there too…

  122. Thalys goes to Mons, Belgium! I have ALWAYS dreamed about Paris! And my fiance and I love going to hockey games! PLEASE help make my dreams come true!

  123. Travelling for any sport where you feel almost a part of the team you’re so connected to them is worth it! For me that’s baseball and hockey.

  124. Thalys obviously goes to the City of Lights, Paris! One sporting event worth travelling for is the World Cup of Rugby! No one has more fun that rugby fans!

  125. Thalys travels to Paris! Pretty much any sporting event is worth traveling for, especially the FIFA World Cup!

  126. Would be great to watch a World Hockey Championship game (or two). Other than that the Olympics would be a blast.

  127. The Melbourne Cup.
    Get dressed up. Drink fancy drinks. Get fancy drunk. Place some bets on some very prestigious horses.

  128. Oh gosh, anything world hockey or soccer is worth travelling for! Also on my bucket list is to one day watch the Daytona 500 in the stands!! Earplugs required!! Yours is a dream trip!! Thank you 😊

  129. The London Olympics was definitely loads of fun, as it encompasses the nature of great sportsmanship along, countries showing off their best in sports and culture, and it’s a great introduction to sporting events for anyone who isn’t a hardcore sports fan. Hence, I would highly recommend attending future Olympic events~! Also, Thalys travels to a number of European city, with Leah mentioning Paris and Cologne in her blog.

  130. I would love to win a trip for two to Paris, France and Cologne, Germany for the Ice Hockey World Championships !!!

  131. Thalys is the best for trian travel in Europe! One destination I have traveled with them is Bruges. What a beautiful city!

    I am a sports aficionado and love traveling for sporting events. I went to Montreal for NHL playoffs vs Boston and that was an amazing experience. The Stanley Cup playoffs is certainly one event worth traveling for.

  132. I am Canadian and therefore love hockey but reading about and looking at your photos, I would love to attend all these sporting events! The Indi 500 makes me think of our Villeneuve family. FIFA makes me think of Iceland’s cry in the Europe’s final, last year. I would love to dress up for the Regatta and the Doudou festival, what??? A doudou in my french canadian culture is a soft stuffed toy for a child!!!

  133. Wimbledon, the French Open and the World Hockey Championsips in Paris would all be wonderful’ As an avid sports fan I dream of travelling all over the world for sports! 🙂

  134. Sporting events worth traveling for are the Championships and the World Hockey Championships would be a blast!

  135. Any NASCAR Sprint Event is worth traveling for! But bring ear plugs!
    Thanks for the chance to win the trip to Paris, @L_e_a_h !

  136. Is this a trick question? I would love to travel pretty much anywhere to watch pretty much any sport. Hockey, Football, Soccer, golf, baseball, rugby, beach volleyball, car racing, etc. I have never been to Europe and would love Tom be able to there and watch my favourite sport while im at it!

  137. Watching an Olympic Games is my ultimate dream.
    I watch all and every Canadian team, tournament sport live on T.V but live and in person would be spectacularly wonderful dream

  138. Thales travels to Belgium. We have been lucky enough to follow Ireland during the World Cup in Cardiff and Chicago. Would love to travel to Paris -it was our honeymoon city many moons ago

  139. I would say the Olympics would be something that is worth traveling for. It’s something that is on my bucket list. I’m more of a winter Olympics fan.

  140. Thalys has trips to Brussels and Amsterdam. Want to watch NBA, Superbowl or Grey Cup.

  141. I am a HUGE sports fan, baseball, hockey, football (American & Canadian), motorsports and so on. They are ALL worth traveling for if they get your blood pumping. One of my dreams is to go to a WRC event somewhere in Europe, that would be amazing.

  142. I love sports, hockey, football and baseball would be my top 3 to travel to watch. Paris and Germany to watch hockey?! Yes please!

  143. I’d for sure travel to watch this or World cup soccer.. never been to the Monaco Grand Prix but its on my bucket list to do so :).. thanks for the giveaway

  144. Thalys travels to Paris and I love sports. Hockey, football and baseball would be my top 3 to travel to watch. Paris and Germany to watch hockey?! Yes please!

  145. Proud Canadian, so ice hockey is absolutely the greatest and would travel anywhere to see great games!

  146. There’s a big golf lover in our family, so seeing an international golf tournament would rank pretty highly on our list.

  147. Anything hockey or soccer. World Hockey Championship, Stanley Cup playoffs, FIFA World Cup, Euro, UEFA Champions League

  148. As a Canadian how can you not say hockey! And as a Torontonian definitely baseball to support the Jays would be worth traveling for! I would love to support our team in Paris! Vive le Canada 🙂

  149. The Stanley Cup Finals for NHL Hockey, The NFL Superbowl, and my favorite sport tennis has the Wimbledon Championships in England. These sporting events are definitely worth travelling for.

  150. anything on the other side of the world, with free travel and accomodation is great, and good booze makes it even better! especially PARIS

  151. I would go all the way to Europe… for anything..! PLUS… I would go just about anywhere for… Hockey..! Its a match made in Heaven!

  152. World Hockey Championships and the World Cup of Soccer are two sporting events definitely worth traveling for!

  153. (1) Thalys travels to Mons, Belgium

    (2) for me, it’s worth travelling to see the Soccer World Cup final match.

  154. I have travelled for the Premier League in London and the Superbowl in Ny. I would travel for the Champions League Final

  155. The Rugby World Cup was a great event worth traveling for! World Junior Hockey Championship would also be a great atmosphere I expect.

  156. I think that any sporting event that you grew up watching as a child is worth travelling for. Especially if your childhood dream has a chance at winning the top prize of whatever sport it is. For me, that would be Fifa, preferably the world cup to watch Germany.

  157. Thalys goes to Amsterdam (which I’ve always wanted to visit). I’d travel (and have) all over to see my hometown hockey team, The Toronto Maple Leafs, play!

  158. It’s always fun to see a sporting event in a different place. It’s something different to do other than the usual tourist traps and you can often get cheap tickets.

  159. Hockey is always fun to watch and worth traveling for. I also don’t mind going to a football game especially the Super Bowl so I could watch the half time show. I would also go see a golf game. I don’t like golf but they always play in amazing locations so they are worth traveling to.

  160. Hockey because I am hoping to see the Toronto Maple Leafs win the cup in my lifetime and I would love to see my favourite football team the Detroit Lions play.

  161. I definitely agree with the Indianapolis 500! My parents loved that race so much, they named me after it. Kyla Indy. I would LOVE to go kiss the finish line!

  162. Ice hockey World Championships! I’ve played hockey since I was a little girl and absolutely dream of having the opportunity to watch some of the best hockey players in the world!

  163. I would travel for NHL, NLF or MLB games for sure and lately both my sons are big into soccer so my first choice would be to travel with them for soccer anywhere in the world!

  164. As a sports fan, i would love to visit:

    1)Hockey World Cup
    2)Fifa sport events.
    3) Doudou Festival sounds fun as well. It started in mid-1300s, it sounds very interesting plus who doesn’t love beer?

  165. Paris is a city that Thalys travels to, and sporting events that are worth travelling for in my world, is football (with the oval shaped ball, not the round ball football which is called soccer in Canada not Football) because my guy is a SERIOUS football fan. Thanks…

  166. Within North America I would travel for hockey, baseball or football but outside North America it would probably be for F1.

  167. On top of the Indianapolis 500, FIFA world cup, Henley Royal Regatta and Doudou Festival, I would love to attend Wimbledon, Tour de France, Winter and Summer Olympics and World Surf League Championship. Taking the Thalys Train to Amsterdam would be wonderful as well.

  168. Attending a game in the Stanley Cup final is worth travelling for. The hockey season is almost over and the two remaining teams only have to win four more games. Ramp up the intensity and it is hockey worth watching for everybody!

  169. Thalys travels to Paris among many other great destinations!

    I would love to travel to see a football (soccer) game, as it is the most international game available to all countries, rich or poor. I also play soccer which admittedly also is a factor.

  170. Thalys travels to Cologne, Germany. The Ice Hockey World Championships is definitely worth traveling for and so is the Indy 500, the FIFA World Cup, the Henley Royal Regatta, and the Doudou Festival!

  171. A trip to Paris, France, to see the World Hockey Championships would be a dream come true!

  172. I followed my favourite hockey team on a western road swing in California and Arizona, planning on going to the World Juniors when it’s in Czech Republic in 2020

  173. The final of any sporting event is worth travelling for (in particular, the Super Bowl for football and the Stanley Cup final for hockey).

  174. I would love to travel and see the World Cup of Hockey whichever city it happens to be taking place in every year…
    what a great way to see the world 🙂

  175. The sporting event you have to go to (even if you’re not a sports fan) is a deciding game of the Stanley Cup final. The passion and fight for Lord Stanley’s mug is huge. To see it presented on the ice is breath-taking!

  176. A sporting event worth travelling to is either Olympics, with the Winter one having a bit of an edge for me since it has figure skating. 🙂 And for the other question, one of the cities Thalys travels to is Amsterdam.

  177. It’s not as big as other events but has a special place in my heart…Crankworx, Whistler. Anyone who loves mountain biking can appreciate the atmosphere and riding. Other than that, I’d say the Olympics 🙂 (AND Thalys travels to Brussels).

  178. Thalys travels to Paris and Cologne.

    I’d love to travel for the Stanley Cup, being Canadian, but I think the World Cup Soccer would be exciting and it’s in more places than the Stanley cup so you’d get to see more of the world.

  179. It’s worth traveling to attend any live sporting event where I can proudly represent Canada at a global level. Seeing the World Hockey Championships would be a bucket list experience!

  180. I’m going to say Hockey is worth traveling for, since I’ve watched it more than any other sport out of national pride.

  181. I’m not a huge sports fan, however I AM a huge fam of travel. I would most love to experience Bullfighting in Spain. The tradition can seem cruel, and I’d like to witness it for myself to see how something that could be considered so inhumane to some, can be so liberating to others. Also, I wouldn’t mint sipping on some fine Sherry, or perhaps a Sangria.


  182. This would be a dream trip! Hockey is one of my biggest loves and besides seeing the Toronto Maple Leafs win the Stanley Cup, seeing Canada play in Europe would be incredible. I play almost every week and fell in love with the game as a young child.

  183. I would travel anywhere to watch the Olympics. The sports events are fun, but the festivities and ambiance are what make it a really memorable experience.

  184. We have friends who travel for Roller Derby – I would travel for ice skating competitions. This trip would be a dream come true and I have friends in Cologne I haven’t seen in 30 years, would be amazing to reconnect!

  185. Thalys travels to Paris World of Outlaws in Knoxville Iowa greatest auto racing in the world Sprint Cars on dirt

  186. FIFA would be top of the list mainly because we don’t see much of it in Canada. World jr Hockey would be pretty cool to see…especially for the 2 guys in my life. Hubby and son

  187. Thalys travels to Paris, I would love to attend The Grand Prix – Montreal! The Stanley cup would be sweet too!

  188. The Australian Open in Melbourne, Australia is definitely worth travelling for! Enjoy the sun and watch the games and then you are able to explore the diversities the city has to offer. For me that means a classic Aussie brunch of smashed avocado on toast with a side of third wave coffee of course!

  189. I will admit I am not a huge sports fan but anything that you love is worth travelling for!

  190. Thalys goes to Rotterdam and I know that travelling would always be worth it when you can shamelessly paint red Maple Leafs all over your face and cheer for Canada playing hockey!!!!!

  191. All of the sporting events (and interesting non-sporting one) would be worth traveling to, as would be the Stanley Cup, Super Bowl, any soccer final, the NBA playoffs, Olympics, and any Leafs game or Team Canada game.

  192. Thalys travels to Dusseldorf, Germany. Any skiing event is worth seeing live! The high speeds, aerial acrobatics, bone rattlling landings and plenty of warm beverages.

  193. The Olympics (summer or winter!) because it’s the one time every two years that non-sports fans get excited about sports, because the energy and patriotism is so amazing. Another sporting event worth travelling for is the rodeo at the Calgary Stampede. This is a world-class rodeo with top athletes in an exciting, lively setting unlike anything else in the world.

  194. I would travel for the Montreal Grand Prix and a Stanley Cup final game! Thanks for the chance!

  195. The sporting event worth traveling for is the Henley Royal Regatta. I would love to see the original version because I live in St. Catharines and we have a Henley Regatta as well which I have actually watched.

  196. The FIFA world cup has been a long time dream of mine! All the proud nationalists getting together for the thrill of the cup!
    The fan fair would be worth the journey!

  197. Thalys travels to Paris!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    OMG I would lose my mind! So glad I found this in time!

  198. So many possibilities – I would love to see the Tour de France, the Americas Cup Sailing Regatta, and, hopefully, in the future, my daughter playing in a FIFA Womans World Cup 🙂 And FYI Thalys travels to Paris and Cologne for sure!

  199. Where hasn’t Thalys travelled too!! Cologne, Rio and everywhere in between what a life 🙂

  200. Anywhere ice hockey is being played, I am there! But I would especially love to go to a World Juniors Championship, or to the Winter Olympics hockey finals!

  201. Thalys travels to Amsterdam =) Anywhere ice hockey is being played, I am there! But I would especially love to go to a World Juniors Championship, or to the Winter Olympics hockey finals!

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