What? A prestigious horse-racing event that sees Cheltenham fill with tourists each year.
Where? Cheltenham Racecourse, Evesham Rd, Prestbury, Cheltenham GL50 4SH
When? 14th – 17th March 2017
How Much? Ticket packages vary, “Best Mate Package” starts at £30.50
As the Spring thaw sets in, the UK opens up to a calendar of wonderful and exciting events for the year to come. Events don’t come much more exciting than the prestigious Cheltenham Festival, a week-long series of horse races that attract thousands of visitors from around the UK and beyond. With prize money second only to the Grand National, the Cheltenham Festival attracts a ritzy crowd of celebrities, world-class racers, jockeys and breeders and has even been known to attract members of the royal family!
The Cheltenham Festival is split into four days of inter-connected, but highly unique events, starting with Champion’s Day on Tuesday 14th March. The first major event in the jump racing calendar, Champion’s Day attracts well over 50,000 spectators each year, each seeking to enjoy a taste of the acclaimed Cheltenham Festival atmosphere.
Wednesday 15th March at the Cheltenham Festival sees Ladies Day. A day at the races can often conjure up an interesting cavalcade of costumes and finery, but nowhere exemplifies this more than Ladies Day, an event which encourages patrons to dress up in their best race day fashion. Expect big hats, plenty of tweed and some of the best designer outfits this side of the Oscars!
Thursday 16th March sees the official celebration of Saint Patrick’s Thursday at the Cheltenham Festival. While the actual Saint Patrick’s Day might be on the Friday, the Festival celebrates the event with a huge Irish-inspired series of entertainment and events all Thursday long. Guinness will flow aplenty and traditional Irish music provides a lively soundtrack to this exciting event at the races.
The grand finale of The Festival is Gold Cup Day on Friday 17th March. All other Festival events are just a build-up to this most prestigious of races, an event where legends are born and fortunes are made. The prize money for the overall event is set at over £4.1 million and previous champions of The Festival have become irrevocably ensconced in racing history.
With over 250,000 visitors descending upon Cheltenham each year, you can be sure that The Festival is the crowning glory of Cotswolds tourism. An entire hospitality industry has sprung up around the event, including themed bars and clubs in Cheltenham town, as well as on-site amenities covering everything from champagne bars to buyer auctions where horses can be traded and trader areas to act as a one-stop shop for all your race-day needs. Whether these are your first races or your fiftieth, The Festival is ready and waiting to accommodate all.