FNB Stadium/Soccer City

FNB Stadium is the largest stadium in Africa and fifth largest in the world, with a seating capacity of almost 95 000. It is located in Nasrec, next to Soweto, south of Johannesburg. The stadium was known as Soccer City for the duration of the 2010 FIFA World Cup™

Soccer City Stadium under construction. Photo courtesy Gauteng Tourism Authority

The stadium was built in 1987, but underwent major refurbishment ahead of the 2010 FIFA World Cup™. More than 80 000 cubed metres of concrete, 9 000 tons of reinforcing steel, 8 000 tons of structural steel and 120 000 cubed metres of soil were used in the upgrade, which saw the stadium rebuilt in the form of a calabash, a symbol of sharing and togetherness. The outside of the stadium is a mosaic of reds and browns, with a ring of lights along the base of the stadium lighting the perimeter.

Soccer City Stadium under construction. Photo courtesy Gauteng Tourism Authority

FNB Stadium has an important place in South African history. The upgraded stadium was the first venue in Africa to host a match in a FIFA World Cup™ tournament. It was also the venue of the World Cup opening and closing ceremony and also the final match – a historic match that saw the Netherlands and Spain, neither of whom had ever won the trophy, pitted against each other. It also marked the first time in the history of the tournament that a European country won the World Cup outside of Europe.

The old FNB Stadium also played a central part in South Africa’s soccer history. It was the venue where South Africa’s national team, Bafana Bafana, lifted the Africa Cup of Nations in 1996. It also played host to some great “Soweto derbies” between the country’s two most popular rivals, Kaizer Chiefs and Orlando Pirates.

In 2010, the revamped stadium hosted its first rugby match. A record crowd of 94 713 turned out to watch South Africa take on New Zealand and Springbok captain John Smit receive his 100th cap.

The stadium has political significance too. It will be remembered as the venue where former president Nelson Mandela was welcomed back to Soweto after his release from prison in 1990 and was also the venue for the the former presidents memorial service on 10 December 2013 that saw an unprecedented gathering of world leaders among them was USA president Barrack Obama, former presidents Bill Clinton, Jimmy Carter and George W Bush . It also hosted the funeral of South African Communist Party leader Chris Hani, who was assassinated in 1993.

US President Barrack Obama speaking at the memorial service of Former President Nelson Mandela. Photo courtesy of CNBC News

Today, the FNB Stadium is a unique architectural landmark in Gauteng. It’s little wonder that FIFA has described it as “one of the most artistic and awe-inspiring football venues on the African continent” The stadium is also referred to at the Calabash Stadium because it was built to resemble an African beer pot.

Stadium Tour admission

R60 per person
R160 family ticket (2 Adults x 3 kids)

Visiting hours

Tours are offered from Monday to Friday at 09h00, 10h30, 12h00, 13h30 and 15h00
Weekend tours are at 12h00 and 13h30

Directions

Soccer City is 12km west of Johannesburg central, close to Soweto

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