The Cheltenham Festival is back!

This a guide for all those on Merseyside making the trip south who want to have the best experience they can at Cheltenham.

Four days of the best horse racing in the country will return to Gloucestershire from March 15-18.

We’ll walk you through how to get there, how to maximise your day and night out, as well as the best places to stay.

Cheltenham promenade (credit to Alby for Geograph)
Cheltenham promenade (credit to Alby for Geograph)


Where is it? How do I get there?

Cheltenham is a spa town in Gloucestershire, England on the edge of the Cotswolds.

Its nearest major city is the neighbouring Gloucester, just a nine-minute train journey away.

Getting to Cheltenham is relatively straightforward.

Trains run from Liverpool Lime Street or South Parkway to Cheltenham Spa train station every hour from 5:30am.

The journey takes just under three hours, with one changeover at Birmingham New Street.

From Cheltenham Spa station, the quickest way to the racecourse is by taxi.

Alternatively, there is a bus that takes you to the course which takes 32 minutes and costs £1-3.


Cheltenham Races information

There are 28 races at Cheltenham, seven on each day of the event.

The most famous race, the Gold Cup will take place on Friday 18th March.

Tuesday 15th is known as Champion Day.

Ladies Day takes place on Wednesday 16th.

Thursday 17th is St Patrick’s Day, and the festival will be celebrating all things Irish.

Gates open every day at 10:30am. The first race of the day will be at 1:30pm and the last race will be at 5:30pm.

Spending your winnings? Or drowning your sorrows

Regardless of whether you’re in a good or bad mood after the last race of the day, there are plenty of options for the resat of your evening.

If you need to get back to the North West, three trains will run from Cheltenham back to Merseyside after the last race of the day but expect demand to be extremely high, so plan accordingly.

If you want to stay in Cheltenham to eat, drink or party, then you’re in luck as the town centre has events on all week.

Still feeling lucky? Beat the bartender at Lounge 72. Win a coin toss against your server and your round of drinks will be doubled!

The all new Home & Botanic has announced a new Guinness After Dark Village until the early hours every day of Cheltenham Festival, with a bar and food served by Cheltenham BBQ society.

We recommend The Coconut Tree for relaxing Sri Lankan street food and cocktails with a great atmosphere.

The Brewery Quarter in Cheltenham town centre will be busy this Race Week, with bottomless brunches, a whole host of bars and restaurants to visit and live music every night.

Vodka Revs will be a great place to enjoy cocktails and drinks in the city centre.

Where to stay in Cheltenham

There are still hotel rooms available on travel sites such as or Trivago but expect prices to be high and availability to be low.

Enjoy the Festival!

(Feature image courtesy of Vegas Eddie, under creative commons licence)