Wimbledon is finally here! And with many of the world's best tennis players gracing its lush green courts, and it's time to get ready for lashes of Pimms and a huge pile of strawberries and cream.
Whether you've got tickets or not, the championships are one of the most popular and iconic events on the British sporting calendar.
Don't worry if you're away for it though, as there are various destinations around the world that allow you to follow in the footsteps of the likes of Roger Federer and Andy Murray and have a game of tennis.
Image by la_bretagne_a_paris
Home to players such as Jo-Wilfried Tsonga (World no. 6), Gilles Simon (World no. 13) and Marion Bartoli (World no. 9), France is beginning to produce some quality players and is now a major force in the game. Taking place at Roland Garros in Paris every year between late May and early June, the most popular Grand Slam in the country is their very own French Open. The city has many tennis courts to choose from too that fill up quickly during the summer months. Situated next door to the Stade Roland Garros, the Tennis Fonds des Princes is a popular place to play allowing you to emulate the stars next door as you have a few rallies. Click here for some of the best accommodation in Paris to rest at in between matches.
Did you know...? The last Frenchman to win Wimbledon was Yvon Petra back in 1946.
Image by Carine06 via Flickr
With the warm, dry climate it's no wonder that Spain have produced some of the best tennis stars in recent years. What could be better than playing tennis in the sun? There are currently five Spaniards in the world's top 20 male players including current number 2, and already one of the all-time greats, Rafael Nadal. Born in Majorca, Nadal has won Wimbledon on two occasions in 2008 and 2010. The success of Nadal has seen a significant investment in tennis facilities in Majorca and there are now many tennis courts available across the island - mainly clay or hard courts - meaning you're never far away from a quick game. Visit Hotels4u for fantastic savings on hotels in Majorca.
Did you know...? Rafael Nadal's uncle was a talented footballer playing for Barcelona and Spain.
Image by Michael Duxbury
After giving us the youngest ever Wimbledon champion, (Boris Becker, aged just 17 years old), tennis in Germany has always been a popular sport. This unknown red-head won the tournament for the first time back in 1985 and since then the country has produced several other top players such as Michael Stich and Steffi Graf. The country has a range of facilities on grass, clay or hard court to play at, as well as a number of tennis camps such as the Tennis Camp Fusser and the Tennis Camp Sepp Baumgartner so anyone heading to Germany this summer should certainly pack their racket!
Did you know...? Steffi Graf is married to former American tennis player Andre Agassi.
Image by Phil Whitehouse
Of course if you're staying in the UK this summer and you've been inspired after Andy Murray's win at Wimbledon (fingers crossed for this afternoon!), there are ample opportunities to pick up a racket and have a game of tennis. Many free courts - both indoor and outdoor - can be found around the country in a bid to encourage more people to play the game and hopefully create that next British Wimbledon champion.
Did you know...? A hawk named Rufus is used three days a week at Wimbledon to keep away any flying intruders such as pigeons from distracting the play.
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Are you going to Wimbledon this year?