Come with me on a train ride. We’ll travel 4,352 kilometres across Australia from east to west, spending four days and three nights on a train 731 metres long. We’ll start in Sydney and stay in Perth at the end and along the way we’ll traverse deserts, stop in a ghost town and cross the mighty Nullarbor Plain. Come with me on a transcontinental journey aboard the iconic Indian Pacific!
Indian Pacific Adventure #18 Optus Stadium, Burswood
Cricket fans will know that the first international test of the 2022 Australian summer is currently being played at Optus Stadium in Perth, with Australia taking on the might of the West Indies. Earlier in the year, several matches in the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup competition were also played at the stadium, drawing crowds of up to 60,000.
With inclement weather forecast for our last day in Perth, we decided to visit Optus Stadium too; not for a cricket match but to go on a guided walking tour.
Optus Stadium is the home of Western Australia’s two Australian Rules Football teams – West Coast Eagles and Fremantle Dockers. And, as well as the cricket, it hosts other major events including Rugby League and Union, concerts, festivals and shows.
At the time of our visit, the ground was being prepared for the Festival of International Football, with excited fans looking forward to Leeds United v Crystal Palace and Manchester United v Aston Villa.
Officially opened on 21 January 2018, the stadium boasts modern design and technologies. During the planning phase, the designers studied the world’s greatest sporting arenas and incorporated the best ideas from each in an effort to create maximum accessibility and comfort for all spectators.
Our guide was keen to demonstrate how this has been achieved and shared many interesting statistics with us. We learned that every seat in the stadium is at least 50cm wide with at least 50 cm in front for ease of movement, and each has its own cup holder. Every seat is also no more than 80 metres from a food or beverage outlet and a bathroom in the concourse.
There are 450 spaces with excellent views specifically allocated for people in wheelchairs. And 1,000 television screens are located around the stadium so fans won’t miss a minute of the action on the field.
After admiring the concourse with its abundance of outlets and bathrooms, we saw the arena from ground level,
in a general admission seating area,
and from one of the 84 private boxes.
We went into the Victory Lounge, where corporate guests are treated to gourmet dining and leather recliners.
While the seating in the media boxes might not be so luxurious the views are better,
but not as good as the rooftop seats, 42 metres above the field!
In 2019, Optus Stadium was awarded the UNESCO Prix Versailles for sport as the “most beautiful stadium in the world”. After spending a couple of hours walking around, we would have to agree.
Linking to Becky’s November Walking Squares