Saransk, perhaps, has become the most unexpected city chosen to host the 2018 FIFA World Cup. In the capital of the Republic of Mordovia matches of the group stage of the tournament will take place.
Saransk is in the Central part of Russia and along with Kazan, Nizhny Novgorod, Volgograd and Samara enters the Volzhsky cluster of the World Cup host cities. Only 300 thousand people live in the city, Saransk takes the 65th place in Russia by its population. In the competition for the right to host the tournament the capital of Mordovia got pass such football cities of Russia as Krasnodar and Yaroslavl.
How is Saransk better than its competitors? First, Mordovia is of advantageous geographical location. The distance from Saransk to Nizhny Novgorod makes 300 km, to Kazan 450 km, Moscow is 650km from Saransk. Secondly, the World Cup is a good motivation for the region for transition to high-quality development — the city will significantly update its transport, sports and hotel infrastructure by the World Cup.
Mordovia Arena Stadium on the map of Saransk:
The Saransk Airport is rather old, it was built in the 1960s, the airport received the status of international only in 2015. Today load is not very heavy because the airport receives charter flights generally. However, by the World Cup the large-scale reconstruction of the runway must finish, as well as construction of two terminals.
The Saransk railway terminal is in the downtown area. It receives about 10 passing trains a day. One can get from Saransk by train to Moscow (10-hour travel), Saint Petersburg (30-hour travel) and Nizhny Novgorod (9-hour travel). During the World Cup it is more comfortable for fans to get to Saransk with change in Moscow.
Public transport in Saransk is presented by buses and trolleybuses.
One can easily get to “Mordovia Arena” because the stadium is practically in the city center on Volgogradskaya Street.
Saransk is a small provincial town in central Russia which is interesting for tourists as a typical provincial Russian city with its accuracy, compactness, unhurried manners and friendliness.
The central square of Saransk on which the grand Spassky Cathedral is located.
Church of the KazanIcon of the Mother of God
An extraordinary beautiful temple built in the 21st century.
A well-planned park in the city center. It is one of the best parks among the cities in central Russia.
Like other host cities of the Volzhsky cluster, the climate in Saransk is moderate and continental. The summerof the World Cup must please the city visitors with warm and dry weather.