No less than sixty racecourses are situated in the UK, which provides racing enthusiasts with numerous opportunities to attend some of the biggest and most prestigious flat and National Hunt races in the world.
We’ve picked out our top 10 courses throughout the UK and explain what makes them worthy of a place on the list.
Located in the Cotswolds over 350 acres, Cheltenham racecourse is home to some of the best National Hunt racing in the UK.
The racecourse is one of the largest in the UK and attracts crowds of almost 70,000 for major events including the prestigious Cheltenham Festival that takes place over four days in March of each year and features races such as the Champion Hurdle, Queen Mother Champion Chase, Stayers’ Hurdle and of course, the Cheltenham Gold Cup.
Next on the list is Aintree Racecourse which is situated in Liverpool and hosts the biggest race of the jumps season, the Grand National. Over 150,000 people attend the Grand National at Aintree over the festival’s three-day meeting which leads up to the main race on the final day which is wagered on by millions across the nation.
Ascot Racecourse is host to one of the most prestigious events on the horse racing calendar, Royal Ascot, which takes place annually in June and attracts an impressive 300,000 attendees over the five-day event, including several members of the Royal family.
The racecourse was founded in 1711 by Queen Anne and currently provides 26 days of racing throughout the year with tips for Ascot racing being available for the majority of races.
Based in Suffolk, Newmarket Racecourse is known as the ‘Home of Racing’ and the birthplace and global centre of thoroughbred horse racing.
Flat races take place at Newmarket throughout the year from April to November with the most popular being the 1,000 and 2,000 Guineas at The Guineas Festival.
Many folks up North enjoy a day out at York races whether it be for the Juddmonte International meeting or the extremely popular Ebor Festival featuring one of Europe’s premier handicap races, the Ebor Handicap.
York has a long history with horse racing which dates back to Roman times and the racecourse, situated just outside the city centre, has won the ‘Best Racecourse in Britain’ award no less than four times.
Home to 13 Group races as well as the Glorious Goodwood festival, Goodwood Racecourse is one of the most popular and picturesque courses set in the English countryside.
If visiting Goodwood is on your bucketlist, you only have a four-month window each year to tick it off. Racing starts in May with the Glorious Goodwood festival taking place in July/August followed by the Spring Meeting and lastly the August and Autumn Meeting in October.
Epsom Racecourse is able to host a staggering 130,000 people which includes those who choose to spectate via the Epsom Downs. The racecourse is best known for hosting The Derby and The Oaks with the Derby taking place annually on the first Saturday in June and The Oaks the day before.
The course itself is one of the more challenging in the UK for horses due to its sharp bends and gruelling climbs.
Haydock Racecourse hosts both flat and National Hunt races throughout the year and is one of two courses located in Merseyside with the other being Ascot.
Featured races at Haydock each year include the Grade 1 National Hunt steeplechase, the Betfair Chase in November and the Group 1 flat race, the Sprint Cup in early September.
Doncaster Racecourse begins and ends the racing flat season and hosts 36 meetings throughout each year. The track features both flat and National Hunt racing with the first being the Lincoln meeting in April all the way through to the St Leger meeting in September.
Officially the oldest operational racecourse in the world having hosted its first race in 1539, Chester Racecourse is a popular destination for racing fanatics and families looking for a fun day out due to its location near several hotels, bars and restaurants.
The biggest event at Chester Racecourse is the three-day May meeting which features the Chester Vase, the Ormonde Stakes, the Cheshire Oaks, the Dee Stakes and the Chester Cup.