History of the Curragh Race Course
The Curragh Race Course was first established in the early 16th century and has been in operation ever since. The course is located on a former military base named the Curragh of Kildare, or simply the Curragh. The former military base was used as a training ground for the military and their horses and served as a strategic location due to its central location in Ireland. In 1892, the Curragh Race Course was the site of the very first Irish Derby and has been the home of the historic race ever since. The Irish Derby is the most prestigious horse race in Ireland and has been held annually since 1892. The course is also home to the oldest horse race in Ireland, the Kildare Hunt Cup, which has been run since 1791. The Curragh Race Course also served as the location for the first Irish Grand National in 1887.
Notable Races at the Curragh Race Course
Irish Derby - The Irish Derby is the most prestigious horse race in Ireland and has been held annually since 1892 at the Curragh Race Course.
The Curragh Cup - The first run in 1866, the Curragh Cup is a prestigious 3-mile race for horses 3 years of age and up.
The Irish Oaks - The Irish Oaks is a world-famous thoroughbred horse race, featuring both mare and filly horses. The race has been held annually since 1888 at the Curragh Race Course.
The Kildare Hunt Cup - The Kildare Hunt Cup has been held annually since 1791 at the Curragh Race Course.
Leading Jockey and Trainer Awards - Held in December each year, the Leading Jockey and Trainer Awards are perfect for horse-racing enthusiasts looking to experience the thrill of the race.
Leading Owner Awards - The Leading Owner Awards are held in December each year and are perfect for horse racing enthusiasts looking to experience the thrill of the race.
Accommodations at the Curragh Race Course
As the Curragh Race Course is primarily a horse racing track, it does not offer an abundance of accommodation options. However, there are a handful of hotels and B&Bs located nearby the course, such as the Courtyard by Marriott Dublin Airport and the Avonmore Guesthouse. If you're planning on visiting during the racing season, it is recommended that you book your accommodation in advance, as the hotels closest to the course tend to fill up quickly.
What to Expect at the Curragh Race Course
The Curragh Race Course is a truly unique experience. While the track may not be suitable for spectators with limited mobility, there are several viewing areas around the course where you can access the track. You can expect to be greeted by an overwhelming atmosphere, featuring the sounds and smells of the horses and track and the excitement and thrill of the race. The Curragh Race Course is open year-round and hosts a variety of horse races throughout the year, such as the Irish Grand National, Irish Derby, and many more. During the summer months, the course hosts the Curragh International Horse Trail, a series of horse races for both amateur and professional riders.
Tips for Visiting the Curragh Race Course
If you're visiting during the racing season, it is recommended that you purchase tickets in advance. During the summer months, the Curragh Race Course hosts multiple horse races for both amateur and professional riders. The Curragh Race Course is located in a rural and quiet area, so be sure not to make any loud noises and remember to close the doors of your car as you leave, to avoid startling the horses.
Attractions and Activities at the Curragh Race Course
While the Curragh Race Course itself is a must-see attraction, several nearby attractions and activities make the trip even more worthwhile. These attractions include Dublinia, a museum that explores Dublin's Viking past; Kildare Village, a shopping and entertainment center; and Newbridge Silverware, a factory where you can learn how silver cutlery is made. You can also explore the Irish National Heritage Park, featuring reconstructions of prehistoric dwellings and other historic landmarks. To make the most of your trip to the Curragh Race Course, be sure to explore the surrounding area and take advantage of the many nearby attractions and activities.
Events and Festivals at the Curragh Race Course
Curragh International Horse Trail - The Curragh International Horse Trail is a series of horse races held at the Curragh Race Course from April to October each year. Curragh Summer School - The Curragh Summer School is a history and heritage program held annually at the Curragh Race Course. The program features lectures and workshops, giving participants a unique and in-depth look at the history of the Curragh Race Course.
Curragh Military Tattoo - The Curragh Military Tattoo is a unique festival held each year at the Curragh Race Course. The festival hosts a variety of performers, including musicians, dancers, and acrobatic artists. The festival is held annually in late October or early November.