SPONSORED: Hands down – the best racecourses to visit in Ireland
Horse racing is popular all over the world and everywhere that horses and jockeys meet, Ireland is known for its contribution to the sport. Every year, over 80,000 visitors attend race meetings in Ireland. While attending live is always a real treat, you don’t have to be in Ireland to enjoy a real-time experience of the country’s finest racing. Horse racing is available live on betting platforms, with live streaming.
Nonetheless, when you do have an opportunity to travel to and around the green isle, we recommend visiting some of the best racecourses in Ireland to revel in the rush, craic and excitement of a busy race meeting.
These are the racecourses that we suggest you add to your itinerary. You won’t want to miss one of the famous races at these revered courses:
Curragh Race Course
The Curragh race course is one of the most prestigious spots in Ireland. The atmosphere is incredible. Three-year-old thoroughbreds battle it out to distinguish themselves as the best in Europe. It’s very likely that some of the best horses you will see here will also run in prestigious races such as the Grand National and Cheltenham.
In addition to the race course, the Curragh is home to an extensive training ground, over 1500 acres. Thanks to this wonderful amenity, the local area is home to over 50 trainers, who have made this corner of Kildare a globally recognised centre for horse training.
If you do have the opportunity to enjoy the racing at The Curragh and you hope to have a successful flutter, make sure to do your research in advance and pay particular attention to each participant’s record on the track.
Leopardstown is one of the best racecourses in Ireland and it is located just outside Dublin city centre. As a result of its location, this is a popular spot with locals and visiting tourists alike.
The track is famous for the Flat and National Hunt races, which are considered to be the best across Ireland and the UK.
However, the biggest race of the year at this course is the Irish Champion Stakes, which takes place every September. This race involves many of the biggest names within the racing industry and consequently, draws a great crowd.
Laytown Racecourse in the east of the country is one of the most unusual and picturesque racecourses that you are likely to visit. The Laytown races are the only races within the Irish and British calendar run on a beach under the rules of the Turf Club.
Races have been held here for almost 200 years. Every September, crowds of up to 5,000 people gather on Laytown strand to watch some of the best horses and jockeys in Ireland charge up the beach. The course is straight and almost flat, with races confined to six and seven furlongs. This race meet is one that you won’t forget and it has made the names of some of the horse-racing greats too!
Punchestown is another highly regarded National Hunt racecourse. It is located 20km south of Dublin. Racing has been held here since 1824. The biggest event of the year is a five-day festival that happens in April, at the end of each season. This festival takes place directly after Cheltenham and is the perfect location for racing rivals to face each other before the season comes to an end. As a result, the Punchestown National Hunt always attracts plenty of media attention.
The race track is a 2 mile right-handed oval. The course is jumped in both directions.
Ballybrit Racecourse is famous for hosting the “Galway Races”, a seven-day festival that takes place each August. This is one of the most highly anticipated festivals in the Irish horse racing calendar and it attracts huge crowds across the week.
The course is right handed, one mile and three furlongs long with a steep decline into a dip, where the final two fences are closer than any other fences on a commercially raced track globally!
If you want great hospitality, excitement and a week of high quality horse racing, the Galway Races will be hard to beat!