The Olympic Games are a celebration of athleticism, dedication, and international unity. While attending the games in person is a dream for many, there are several places across North America that allow you to immerse yourself in the Olympic spirit, whether you’re a fan of winter sports, summer sports, or both. Here are some of the best places in North America to get your Olympics fix.
1. Lake Placid, New York (Winter Olympics):
Why It’s Great: Lake Placid, nestled in the Adirondack Mountains, hosted the Winter Olympics in both 1932 and 1980. Today, it’s a year-round Olympic destination. You can visit the Olympic Sports Complex, where you’ll find the bobsled and skeleton track, or explore the Olympic Museum to learn about the history of the games. In the winter, you can even take a ride on an Olympic bobsled.
2. Salt Lake City, Utah (Winter Olympics):
Why It’s Great: Salt Lake City was the host city for the 2002 Winter Olympics. The city’s Olympic Legacy Park offers activities like bobsledding and skeleton rides, as well as the opportunity to watch athletes train. You can also visit the Utah Olympic Park for skiing, snowboarding, and other winter sports.
3. Los Angeles, California (Summer Olympics):
Why It’s Great: LA is set to host the 2028 Summer Olympics, making it an excellent place to start getting into the Olympic spirit. Visit the LA84 Foundation’s Olympic Legacy Collection to explore Olympic artifacts and memorabilia. You can also check out the Rose Bowl, which hosted soccer events during the 1984 Olympics.
4. Colorado Springs, Colorado (Year-Round Olympic Training):
Why It’s Great: Colorado Springs is home to the United States Olympic & Paralympic Committee headquarters. You can tour the Olympic Training Center and witness athletes preparing for the games. The city also boasts the U.S. Olympic & Paralympic Museum, offering an interactive experience that celebrates the Olympic journey.
5. Whistler, British Columbia (Winter Olympics):
Why It’s Great: Whistler, located north of Vancouver, was a key site for the 2010 Winter Olympics. The Whistler Sliding Centre allows you to experience the thrill of the luge or skeleton. Additionally, the Olympic Plaza and the Whistler Olympic Park offer insights into the games’ history.
6. Lake Geneva, Wisconsin (Olympic Sailing):
Why It’s Great: Lake Geneva hosted the Olympic sailing events during the 1960 Rome Olympics. While you won’t find traditional Olympic venues, the town offers a picturesque setting for boating and water sports enthusiasts. You can explore the lake, visit historic sites, and enjoy the town’s charming atmosphere.
7. Vancouver, British Columbia (Winter Olympics):
Why It’s Great: Vancouver hosted the 2010 Winter Olympics. While you can’t relive the games, you can explore the Olympic Cauldron, visit the Olympic Village, and even ski or snowboard in nearby Whistler.
These destinations offer unique opportunities to connect with the Olympic spirit, whether you’re interested in winter sports, summer sports, or the Olympic movement in general. From interactive museums to thrilling bobsled rides, these places in North America allow you to experience a taste of the Olympic magic and gain a deeper appreciation for the athletes and the games.