We often see pictures of stadiums and pitches located at high altitudes with fabulous views. Most of these picturesque international stadiums are located in South America, given the geography of the continent and love for football there.
In recent years however, in India - where the sports infrastructure has never been of the highest level - there has been a spate of project completions that have been undertaken to enhance sporting facilities in rural areas. We take a look at some of the highest stadiums in the country.
Leh football stadium - 11,000 feet
This stadium is nearing completion and was recently in the news after several politicians tweeted about its relation to the Khelo India sports scheme. A glimpse of it is enough to understand why everyone is looking forward to watching matches and possibly playing as well at the highest stadium in India.
Lahaul Spiti Cricket Stadium - 11,000 feet
No construction has begun for this proposed stadium but as it stands, the proposal of a 10,000 seater stadium has been given the go-ahead in this area. The Lahaul Spiti Cricket Association is leading the way for the funding and necessary initiatives of construction. Once it is completed, it will be the highest cricket stadium in the world.
Shilaroo Hockey Stadium - 8000 feet
One would want to make sure that their drag flicks do not go way over the goal in this extremely scenic location. Hockey players would die to play here in this abode of a stadium nestled in Shilaroo, Himachal Pradesh. The stadium is maintained by the SAI and is located in the Netaji Subash High Altitude Training Centre.
Chail Cricket Pitch - 8000 feet
It also happens to be one of the oldest cricket pitches in the world having been established by Maharaja Bhupinder Singh of Patiala in 1893. It was a summer retreat for many that gradually evolved into a central sports facility for the people of Chail, Himachal Pradesh. People also use it for polo and football at times but its main use has always been for hosting both district and state level cricket matches.
Ransi stadium - 7000 feet
Pauri in Uttarakhand is where this stadium is. It is under development to become a stadium of international repute and class. It is still quite raw and people mainly frequent it for cricket and football given that it is located about 2.5 km from the main town.
Papum Pare Stadium - 6200 feet
Arunachal Pradesh is gradually being identified as a sports hub and this year will see it finally get a massive international level sports stadium. The Papum Pare district will have a 15,000 seater stadium that has been built at a cost of 59 crores. It has taken over 7 years for it to completed but the work is in its closing stages.
Shere-i-kashmir stadium - 5250 feet
The Jammu and Kashmir state team is based out of this beautiful location that has been in existence since 1983. The pitch has had some famous incidents including when during a match between India and West Indies in 1983, there was an interruption where locals began digging the pitch during the lunch break. West Indies won the match eventually/ The other match that it has hosted was between India and Australia in 1986.
TRC Polo Synthetic Turf Ground - 5200 feet
Home of Real Kashmir FC in the I League, the pitch can be used for football and polo as well while seating around 11,000 people. Ever since Real Kashmir came into being in 2016, efforts have been made to give them the best facilities, and this pitch was given to them for their development and use.
Dharamshala Cricket Ground - 4780 feet
As it stands, this ground is the highest fully functional international cricket ground in the world. It has hosted several tests, ODI, and T20 matches with the first one being an India Australia test match in 2017. The stadium was also a host stadium during the 2016 T20 World Cup in India.
Krishnagiri stadium-Kerala - 2100 ft
With most stadiums being centered around the Himalayan region, it comes as a surprise that Kerala too has managed to construct stadiums at elevated heights. Krishnagiri Stadium hosts cricket matches regularly and is a 20,000 seater stadium located in the Wayanad district of Kerala. It is spread across 11.5 acres and is one of the main coaching centers in the entire state.