If you try and look on the bright side of Andy Murray’s quarter final exit at Wimbledon, have you ever stopped to think just how many great places he gets to visit each year? Granted, he may be a bit preoccupied with training… But assuming he’s given just a little bit of down time, let’s take a look at what he could get up to on his day off in each of the excellent destinations featured on his 2014 schedule:
Australian Open: 13 – 26 January (Melbourne, Australia)
Heading down under to Melbourne, Australia, Murray will get a taste of the city’s awesome vibe: From the buzz of Degraves Street to the history of Cook’s Cottage in the Fitzroy Gardens. It’s just a shame that he wouldn’t have time to drive the Great Ocean Road.
BNP Paribas Open: 06 – 16 March (Indian Wells, USA)
Situated in the beautiful Coachella Valley (Palm Springs) area of California, Murray’s time off would be best spent soaking up the stunning scenery around him. He could do this by enjoying a round of golf or, even better, by taking a hot air balloon ride over the valley.
SONY Open Tennis: 19 – 30 March (Miami, USA)
Murray would need more than one day off to see all that Miami has to offer. There are hundreds of attractions and activities to choose from, but you’d be hard pushed to beat an airboat tour of the everglades. Either that or a huge shopping spree at one of the malls!
Mutua Madrid Open: 04 – 11 May (Madrid, Spain)
Madrid is the cultural hub of Spain, and with its rich Roman history, there are plenty of museums and historical sights to see. The Prado Museum and the Reina Sofia are well worth a visit. Then, after a long day exploring, indulge in some mouth-watering tapas.
Internazionali BNL D’Italia: 11 – 18 May (Rome, Italy)
First on the list for a day in Rome would be to take a tour of the Vatican and the impressive Sistine Chapel. The Colosseum is an absolute must and is even better when timed with sunset and then round off the day with the Trevi Fountain and the Spanish Steps.
Roland Garros (French Open): 25 May – 08 June (Paris, France)
Murray would need time to unwind and re-focus if he wants to stand a chance of ever beating Nadal on the clay. A relaxing walk or boat ride along the River Seine is a great start. Follow it up with a trip to the Louvre and top it off with a night visit up the Eiffel Tower.
Aegon Championships: 09 – 15 June (London, England)
Being on home soil, Murray probably doesn’t need a lot of time to do the whole sightseeing thing… But there’s nothing stopping him taking in the great views from a capsule on the London Eye or catching an evening performance at a theatre down the West End.
Wimbledon: 23 June – 06 July (Wimbledon, England)
No time for relaxing now, Murray! You need to keep hold of that title! Ok, maybe just a gentle stroll around Wimbledon common…
Coupe Rogers: 04 – 10 August (Toronto, Canada)
The perfect distraction on a day off would be to head to the top of the CN Tower – the tallest freestanding structure in the Western Hemisphere. Alternatively, a day trip to the magnificent Niagara Falls and Niagara on the Lake would really recharge your batteries.
Western & Southern Open: 10 – 17 August (Cincinnati, USA)
If Murray is missing his dogs, Maggie May and Rusty, he could get his animal fix at the famous Cincinnati Zoo & Botanical Garden – said to be one of the best in America. There’s also a big art and music scene in the city, which can be felt along the vibrant riverfront.
US Open: 25 August – 07 September (New York, USA)
Obviously there’s the Empire State Building, Times Square, the Statue of Liberty and Central Park… But if Murray is a seasoned traveller to New York, he may want to delve in to some of the smaller, characteristic districts such as Little Italy or Chinatown.
Shanghai Rolex Masters: 05 – 12 October (Shanghai, China)
Time off in Shanghai has to be spent exploring the Bund. It is the symbol of modern China and its neon lights are especially fantastic at night time. In the day, take in the city views from the Shanghai World Financial Center – the highest observatory in the world!
BNP Paribas Masters: 27 October – 02 November (Paris, France)
Murray will have already visited Paris this year, so rather than sightseeing, it’s time to make the most of the city’s excellent shopping and start buying some Christmas presents! From designer brands and boutiques to quirky flea markets – you’ll find anything and everything!
Who else fancies becoming a world class sports star now?