Is your team is poised to make the Championship? Awesome! Did you score your family hard-to-get tickets? TOUCHDOWN! However, if neither of these apply — especially as those tickets are a down payment on a car or house — you can come up a winner with a great road trip during Super Bowl Weekend to the hometowns of championship teams from recent years, as well as sites for this and next year’s Super Bowl showdowns.
Atlanta (Site for Super Bowl LIII at Mercedes-Benz Stadium, 2019)
Even without tickets, the city is alive with many championship-grade attractions. Those following college football will enjoy the Chick-fil-A College Football Hall of Fame, with a bounty of historical artifacts including a three-story helmet wall and an inspirational rotunda memorializing college football legends. Interactive attractions allow visitors to get into the game at the Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl Skill Zone and kicking a field goal on the 45-yard playing field, and hanging with Rece Davis and Desmond Howard at the ESPN College GameDay Desk. Other essential family attractions include the World of Coca-Cola, the Center for Civil and Human Rights and Children’s Museum of Atlanta.
Regardless of how the New England Patriots fare in the playoffs and (potentially) the Super Bowl, they are an undisputed sports dynasty with a fantastic setup that puts their successes on full display. Patriot Place (patriot-place.com), in Foxborough, Massachusetts, is a shopping, entertainment and dining plaza built around Gillette Stadium that also features a skating rink, the CBS Sporting Club for game viewing and the Renaissance Boston Patriot Place hotel. One of the star attractions for football fans is the Patriots Hall of Fame, a multistory, towering experience jam-packed with memorabilia, entertainment and the Patriots’ Super Bowl trophies.
The triumphs of the two-time Super Bowl champion Baltimore Ravens are on full display, with monuments and attractions that delve into the city’s illustrious sports past. These include a statue of hall-of-famer Johnny Unitas (legendary Colts quarterback, back when the Colts were in Baltimore, and Hall of Famer) at the entrance of M&T Stadium; Camden Yards (the Orioles’ stomping ground in baseball season), and Banner Field (fields-inc.com/portfolio-items/banner-field-at-latrobe-park), by state-of-the-art sports center donated by sportswear company Under Armour, where one can watch a free recreational league game or jump into one yourself.
Sports bar fun for (almost) all includes Games Baltimore, packed with Pac Man, Galaga, other old-school video games, pool, darts and, more within a 10-minute walk from Camden Yards and signature eats like the Baltimore burger topped with a crab cake and Old Bay; Pickles Pub, and the Orioles Grill, for those eager to get a jump on baseball season.
Miami (Site for Super Bowl LIV, 2020, New Miami Stadium, Miami Gardens, Florida)
While the city’s beloved Miami Dolphins are (to date) underdogs in the football universe, there are numerous ways to enjoy playoff and championship game days as well as the famously winning weather. The Wharf hosts a family- and pet-friendly viewing party with a side of live music and tasty food from the on-site food trucks. The Nautilus Hotel, meanwhile, hosts a complementary Backyard BBQ for guests with all the Super Bowl snacks one could dream of, from ribs and wings to nachos and burgers. Ms. Cheezious’ MiMo neighborhood location is prepping a squad of mini-grilled cheese sandwiches, loaded tots, wings and other things involving gooey cheese for game day noshing in its garden area.