Some locations and backdrops of the nation’s college football stadiums make them destinations for sports travelers. The beauty of college football is that these venues often reside in smaller towns and in some of the most picturesque locations in the country. Below, we’ll look at the 13 most scenic college football stadiums.
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14. McLane Stadium, Baylor
The entire Baylor University campus is picturesque, but the athletics side of campus sits right on the Brazos River. McLane Stadium, built in 2014, took full advantage of its positioning, opening the horseshoe directly facing the river. While Waco, Texas, is far from a destination city (save for Fixer Upper fans), Baylor’s campus and football stadium are worth adding to the college bucket list.
13. Acrisure Stadium, Pitt
For both college and professional football, Acrisure Stadium (formerly Heinz Field) boasts one of the best backdrops. The skyline of Pittsburgh sits at the fork of three rivers and in the heart of the Allegheny Mountains. Former facilities on this land included Tri River Stadium, which pays homage to this natural formation. For maximum views, visit the upper west deck (pictured above). On a clear fall night, the Steel City is one of the best places to be.
12. Lane Stadium, Virginia Tech
If you sit high enough in the east stands of Lane Stadium, you’re rewarded with a spectacular view of the Appalachian Mountains. This area is known as the Blue Ridge and during peak fall foliage, few stadiums in college football are as scenic. Add in the aesthetic of the Virginia Tech campus and the traditions surrounding the Hokies (namely Enter Sandman) and you’ll be hard pressed to find a better all around atmosphere.
11. Maverik Stadium, Utah State
Spoiler alert: Utah State isn’t the only Utah school on this list. Nestled right in between the Rocky Mountains and the Great Salt Lake, Maverik Stadium offers vastly different yet scenic views depending on which way you look. Also a nice bonus, the landscaping placed inside the stadium pulls you into the nature vibe (pictured above).
10. DKR Texas Memorial Stadium, Texas
Situated in the heart of Austin, DKR Texas Memorial Stadium gives you city views unparalleled in the FBS. The upper decks are truly towering and sitting high up in the north end zone gives you that spectacular view of the skyline. Hill Country sits just to the west and the flat plains of Central Texas surround the rest. You can see for over 30 miles from up this high.
9. Rice-Eccles Stadium, Utah
If you sit on the home side of Rice-Eccles Stadium, you might be doing more watching of the mountain backdrop than the game itself. Like its State counterpart, this stadium sits within eyeshot of the truly gorgeous Rocky Mountains. Perhaps it’s the color scheme of the Utes, or just coincidental placement, but the views work slightly better here.
8. Canvas Stadium, Colorado State
Along the I-25 corridor sits some of the most breathtaking views of the Rocky Mountains anywhere in the country. Fort Collins happens to sit on that corridor and the architects of Canvas Stadium – a relatively-new venue opened in 2017 – knew that. Sit up high in the east stands for the best view of not only the mountainous backdrop, but the home stands of this beautiful newer stadium.
7. Michie Stadium, Army
Not many places in the world match the color show put on during fall foliage in New York. Michie Stadium sits on one of the country’s most beautiful and prestigious campuses, The United States Military Academy, which bumps right up on the Hudson River. While Michie Stadium itself doesn’t sit directly on the Hudson River, they get their own body of water in the Lusk Reservoir. Head here in mid-October to be rewarded with some of the most spectacular views in all of college football.
6. Rose Bowl Stadium
It’s not the most iconic scene in college football for nothing. The Granddaddy of Them All etched its place in sports as a staple game, venue, and sight to behold. The San Gabriel Mountains set the stage for stunning sunsets and the most photographed stadium in college football. Rose Bowl Stadium transcends just a sporting event and becomes a pilgrimage for sports fanatics to cast their eyes on the iconography.
5. California Memorial Stadium
What more could you ask for from a stadium view? From California Memorial Stadium, you can see the Santa Cruz Mountains, the sprawling hills and campus of Berkeley, the San Francisco skyline, the Golden Gate Bridge, and the San Francisco Bay. The upper concourse here offers 360-degree spectacular views of everything the Bay Area has to offer.
4. Husky Stadium, Washington
The most defining feature of Husky Stadium – and perhaps Washington football – isn’t the purple nor their husky mascot. It’s the backdrop of their football stadium, which sits on Union Bay. This school is famous for “sailgating” where hundreds of boats take their tailgates into Union Bay (pictured above). UW’s campus is already one of the most beautiful in the world, but the strategic placing of this football stadium over 100 years ago holds to be its defining feature today.
3. Kidd Brewer Stadium, Appalachian State
Far removed from anywhere and anything sits Boone, North Carolina. It’s buried in the gorgeous Appalachian Mountains, particularly in the famed Blue Ridge region. Everywhere you look is picturesque, and that’s cranked up to 11 during peak fall foliage. In fact, you might not find a more beautiful region to be in when the fall leaves turn. Even the drive into town is scenic.
2. Folsom Field, Colorado
The Flatirons (pictured above) are some of the most dramatic mountain sheers in the United States. Luckily for the University of Colorado, the campus and football stadium were built squarely in their shadow. Sit in the east stands for the most dramatic views of the most-visited spot in the Rockies and enjoy the Colorado air. No matter the season, Folsom Field is one of the most scenic stadiums in college football.
1. LaVell Edwards, BYU
How do you one-up sitting in the shadow of the Rockies? How about sitting a baseball’s throw away from them? BYU’s campus and athletic facilities are almost as close as you can get to a mountain without having to build the stands on their side. Sitting in the home stands offers the most breathtaking view of a venue in all of American sports. As BYU flocks to the Big 12, new groups of fans will be afforded access to the most scenic college football stadium every year.
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