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Australia’s Melbourne Cup

by Benjamin Kerns

Nov 27, 2019

© Martin Applegate | Dreamstime

Destinations / Oceania

The Melbourne Cup is the most popular annual horse race in Australia. Similar to the Kentucky Derby, the thoroughbred race is one of the largest events of the year and brings in 100,000 spectators. The festivities include music, a parade, over-the-top attire and, of course, a bit of gambling to spice up the day.

 

The headline race has been held at Flemington Racecourse since 1861. The site is capable of housing 120,000 guests and boasts a variety of precincts for well-to-do travelers that aren’t afraid to throw down money for fine dining and entertainment. If you’re not so well off that you can spend a couple thousand dollars, the local bars and restaurants get in on the action, too, with tons of specials and showings of the race.

 

The parade is one of the highlights of Melbourne Cup Day. Tens of thousands of people flock to the streets to watch the march of thoroughbreds, jockeys and celebrity guests as they make their way to the track. The day also features a Ladies Day, where the local women and guests enjoy music and entertainment while showing off their outfits in a catwalk display.

 

Melbourne Cup Day is just one day of a weeklong event known as the Melbourne Cup Carnival. So even if you’re not able to make it for the main event, there are plenty of festivities and three other races to explore.

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