Going to Europe this June? If so, get ready to be caught up in Euro 2012 fever. The UEFA European Championship (Euro, for short) happens every four years, and it’s the biggest soccer event in Europe after the World Cup. Obviously soccer is huge in Europe, and the Euro championship pits 16 national teams against each other to compete for the ultimate honor. It’s a huge deal. People go nuts for it.
Euro 2012 kicks off on June 8 and lasts three weeks, with the Final played on July 1. The host countries are Poland and the Ukraine, but the whole continent will be buzzing. Lots of EF College Break trip destinations are competing (Greece, Czech Republic, Netherlands, Germany, Spain, Italy, Ireland, France, England), so get ready. It’s a blast watching games, seeing the locals going crazy, feeling the national pride, soaking in the festive atmosphere. And if you’re lucky enough to be in the country that wins the whole thing, well that’ll take the life-long memories to a whole new level.
I’ve experienced big international sporting events while abroad, and there’s nothing quite like it. I was living in Prague during the World Cup, watching tons of games at the beer gardens and pubs around the city. I will never forget being at a beer garden for the semi-final between Italy and Germany, when a table full of Italians sitting next to us went completely bonkers after Italy’s go-ahead goal late in the game. Weirdly, I also remember there was a big spider at the bottom of my beer. (It’s funny the things that stick with you.)