Stade de France is home to the France National Team and one of the biggest stadiums in Europe. Reasons to take a Stade de France stadium tour include;
- Largest Stadium in France
- World Cup 98 Final Stadium
- Euro 16 Final Stadium
- Visit the Stade de France Museum
- See Rare World Cup 98 Memorabilia
- Access the VIP Area and Dressing Rooms
- Sit in the French President’s Seat
You can easily reach the stadium via the French Metro. Additionally, I recommend you book your ticket online in advance to efficiently organise your Stade de France visit.
Stade de France Saint Denis
Where is the Stade de France and how do you get there? The stadium is in Saint Denis which is north of Paris. Nonetheless, it’s easy to reach on the Paris Metro. Simply take Metro Line 13 north to Saint Denis – Porte de Paris. Follow the Stade de France signs as you exit the station. Once outside the station you’ll see the huge stadium which is a 5 minute walk away. Whilst in this area, why not visit the Saint Denis Basilica?
Stade de France Stadium
Firstly, the France national football team play their home games at Stade de France. It’s famous for hosting the World Cup 98 final where France beat Brazil 3-0. Furthermore, as well as football the stadium also hosts several other events. Popular events include athletics, concerts and rugby but several other unique events are held here. Lastly, the capacity is 81,338 for football or rugby matches.
Stade de France Facts
At 81,338, Stade de France is the largest stadium in both Paris and France. In such a huge stadium, the big screens look like regular stadium screens. On the contrary, at 196m2 these big screens are larger than tennis courts. France famously won the World Cup here in 1998. Zinedine Zidane scored 2 and Emmanuel Petit scored 1. In addition, Zidane scored the first ever goal at the stadium. Famous artists including Prince, Sting, Rolling Stones, Madonna, U2, George Michael, Paul Mccartney have performed here. As for athletics, Usain Bolt ran 9.79 seconds here in 2009. Moreover, he returned in 2013 and ran the 200 meters in 19.73 seconds.
Stade de France was the first stadium which could convert from a football to an athletics stadium. As a result, it inspired the London Olympic stadium.
As we’re in Paris I will compare the roof to Paris landmarks. Firstly, the Stade de France roof is one and a half times as heavy as the Eiffel Tower. Secondly, if you stretched the roof in a straight line it would be longer than the Champs Elysee. Lastly, the roof is completely elevated from the stadium therefore more natural light can enter. Olympique Marseille play in another French stadium with an impressive roof.
So many world leaders have sat in the VIP seats at Stade de France. As we’re in France I’ll name the French leaders who have visited. Former French presidents Chirac, Sarkozy and Hollande have all frequented the stadium. In addition, current president Macron often visits. You can ask the guide which is the president’s seat, alternatively, look for the seats with a huge flat screen TV at their feet. An interesting fact about the blue wall in front of the VIP section is that it was originally the podium. As a matter of fact, if you watch the World Cup 98 medal ceremony, this is the only time when players walked on it.
I’ve taken stadium tours all over the world and a stadium police station visit is exclusive to Stade de France. Did you ever wonder where badly behaved fans and pitch invaders were taken? You may visit the various police cells which can get really busy during stadium events. Most importantly, I was informed that during an AC-DC concert the police station was at its capacity with misbehaving fans.
Stade de France is so big that it has a ring road within it. For this reason, there’s a players entrance mural opposite the entrance to the dressing rooms so coach drivers know where to stop.
An interesting fact about the dressing rooms is they were designed by Michel Platini. Another interesting fact is that Brazil used the home dressing rooms during the France 98 final. You would think this was an omen that France are stronger in the away team dressing rooms? Not true as they used the away team dressing room again against portugal in Euro 16 and lost. Not only can you explore the changing areas but also visit the massage, bathing areas as well as use the toilet facilities.
A highlight of the stadium tour is the walk through the players tunnel. So many famous players have made this walk including Zidane, Henry, Ronaldinho, Ronaldo, Beckham and Ibrahimovic. As you would imagine, the list of legends who have made this walk is endless. Enjoy!
One of the top places to pose for pictures is at pitch side. Unfortunately, there are no dugouts but you do have excellent stadium views. Lastly, from pitchside you can appreciate the true enormity of the stadium.
Stade de France Museum
The Stade de France museum hosts memorabilia from all the famous events held here. Football fans will appreciate the rare World Cup 98 articles such as Fabien Barthez shirt. Of course, there’s a signed Zidane shirt on display as well. In addition to the France memorabilia, there are items donated from visiting teams. Athletics fans will love the Usain Bolt memorabilia. Rugby fans will appreciate the memorabilia from the World Cup which was held here in both 1999 and 2007.
Concert Hall of Fame
In addition to the sports events, the museum features original photography from the concerts held here. As the premier stadium in Paris, France, the best of the best musicians love to play here. Artists who have performed here include Prince, Sting, Bruce Springsteen, Rolling Stones, Madonna, Black Eyed Peas, David Guetta,Paul McCartney, One Direction, Celine Dion, George Michael, U2, Depeche Mode and Muse. You can see pictures from their concerts hanging on the wall of fame.
As well as the Concert Hall of Fame, there’s also a mural to the artists which have performed at Stade de France. Prince has a major feature in this mural as he performed here in 2011. In addition, you’ll see Paul McCartney and Will I Am from the Black Eyed Peas. Lastly, this mural is an excellent photo spot on the stadium tour.
How was Stade de France Constructed?
You’ll learn exactly how the Stade de France was constructed in the museum. Not only can you view a miniature model but also timelapse videos of the construction. Did I mention that museum access is included in your stadium tour? Furthermore, you can visit twice, both before and after the tour.
Stade de France Boutique
If you require any Stade de France merchandise, you’ll enjoy the boutique. You can buy most things stamped with a French rugby or football logo. Perfect to wear during the tour. Additionally, the merchandise makes good souvenirs of your trip to both the stadium and to Paris.
Enjoy your Stade de France Stadium Tour
Unfortunately, Stade de France stadium tours are not so frequent. Even more so if you require a tour in English. For this reason, I recommend you organise your stadium visit well and book your ticket online in advance.
Visiting Paris? Check out the most beautiful cathedral and visit Sainte-Chapelle. Alternatively, visit the second largest stadium in Paris, Parc des Princes. Interested in World Cup stadiums, how about the Seoul World Cup Stadium in South Korea?
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