Where will the 2018 Winter Olympics be?
In July 2011 it was third time lucky for Pyeongchang when it was awarded the 2018 Winter Olympics following two consecutive unsuccessful bids to host the 2010 and 2014 Games.
The 2018 event will be the third Winter Olympics to have been hosted in Asia, the previous two having been in Japan – Sapporo in 1972 and Nagano in 1998.
Located in eastern South Korea, about 100km from the country’s capital Seoul, Pyeongchang is really a county rather than a city.
The theme of the games will be ‘New Horizons’ with a view to creating an international sports hub as well as encouraging youth into competitive sports.
The Alpensia Sports Park, Pyeongchang
Pyeongchang received 63 votes during the first round voting at the 123rd International Olympic Committee meeting in Durban, South Africa. That was enough to put it well ahead of its rival bidders: German city Munich received 25 votes and France’s Annecy got just 7 votes.
The 2018 bid and its vision build on the considerable infrastructure and sports development that has resulted from pledges made in bids for the 2010 and 2014 Olympic Winter Games, demonstrating an ongoing commitment to host the Games, according to the IOC report on candidate cities.
The official website set up for the Pyeongchang bid states: “1.5 million tourists visit Korea each year to enjoy winter sports, and that number continues to increase. Winter sports are becoming more popular among the one billion Asian people living within a two-hour flight distance of Pyeongchang, which is emerging as a winter sports hub in Asia.”
South Korea also has experience of hosting the Summer Olympics – in 1988 Seoul hosted the XXIV Olympiad.
Books for Annecy 2018 and Munich 2018 bids
Other cities that bid for the 2018 Winter Olympics
Munich, Germany – Had the Munich bid had been successful it would have been the first city to host both Summer and Winter Olympic Games, having hosted the 1972 Summer Olympics.
Annecy, France – Its bidding campaign failed to impress. France much preferred to focus on its bid for the 2024 Summer Olympics. Had Annecy won, France would have hosted the Winter Olympics for the fourth time, so far only the USA has hosted four Winter Olympics. Bidding for the host city for the 2024 Summer Olympics will begin in 2015, with the winning bid to be announced in 2017. The last time France hosted the Summer Olympics was in 1900 in Paris.