Cheltenham racecourse, on the north side of town, a ten-minute walk from Pittville Park at the foot of Cleeve Hill, is Britain’s main steeplechasing venue. The principal event of the season, the three-day National Hunt Festival in March, attracts 40,000 people a day; it’s essential to buy tickets in advance. Other meetings take place in January, April, October, November and December: a list of fixtures is posted at the tourist office. For the cheapest but arguably the best view, pay £8 (rising to £15 during the Festival, £25 on Gold Cup Day) for entry to the Best Mate Enclosure, as the pen in the middle is known.

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