October 16, 2012

Melbourne on the horses

Melbourne Cup

Holding the cup LIKE A WINNER!

When Tash McGill got to spend 2 perfect days in Melbourne, she shopped, she sipped high tea, and she grabbed hold of the city’s biggest prize of all – the Melbourne Cup.

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Melbourne is a hub of breathtaking events throughout the year, and right now they’re building up to the event the city is possibly most famous for throughout the world: The Melbourne Cup.

Flemington Raceway has been in existence before the nation of Australia itself, and every year for the 4 days of Spring Carnival thousands gather from all over the world for this one of a kind event. They come for the horses, the betting, the atmosphere, the celebrities and certainly for the fashion.

When I think horseracing and Melbourne Cup, it’s hard not to recall Eliza Dolittle from “My Fair Lady” dressed to the nines and screaming at the horse to… well, you remember.

Random facts you might not know about Flemington:

  • Statue ot Pharlap

    Our KIWI horse, Pharlap honoured at Flemington

    A Heritage Centre that contains Pharlap’s banner from his amazing win; offers lots of behind-the-scenes insights to this incredibly passionate sport and culture, including tours – even on Race Day.

  • Carbine’s horse stall can be viewed; a NZ-bred horse that won the Melbourne Cup. His descendants have won the Melbourne Cup every year since 1988, as well as plenty of others.
  • Over 16,000 rose bushes are planted at Flemington that bloom throughout the year but are in lush beauty during Spring Carnival.
  • There is a Royal Garden featuring a number of roses named after members of the Royal Family, particularly Princess Diana and the Queen Mother.
  • The Melbourne Cup is made new each year, and has varied in design and size over the years, before being finalized in it’s current (actually the original) version. It’s worth $175,000 and handmade in gold, on a base of Australian native wood. The three handles represent the jockey, the trainer and the owner – the poor horse just gets a ribbon!
Flemington Raceway

The hallowed gates

How to get to Flemington

You can catch the train directly to Flemington from the central train network. Flemington Station is within the grounds, which makes it ideal for Race Day. It’s one of the few racetracks in the world where the finish line is in front of the public viewing stands, rather than the Member’s Stands but the view is incredible no matter where you stand!

Don’t think that you just have to be into racing to enjoy a day at the Melbourne Cup. Tickets are in high demand, but Melbourne itself is full of unique shopping and food experiences, so it’s worth planning a getaway just to soak up the atmosphere of this world-renowned race day.

And don’t forget your fascinator.

About Megan Singleton

Megan

Megan Singleton is a travel writer, blogger and radio correspondent. She's been gallivanting around the world telling stories for the last 16 years and has her suitcase always half packed (or half un-packed!) Follow along on Facebook or Twitter and sign up for monthly newsletters if you want to keep up with the journey!

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