When travelling, we are always on the lookout for experiences that are not always on the tourist wish list. We also enjoy a day watching horse racing and we were fortunate that our time in Sydney coincided with a race meeting at Rosehill Gardens which is one of the premier racecourses in Sydney.
The racecourse is around 22km outside of Sydney city centre and we decided that it would be nice to take the RiverCat ferry from Circular Quay up to Parramatta. We bought tickets for the meeting online and noticed that this entitled us to free transport to and from the course. This made the whole trip really good value for money and gave us a little more money to wager on the horses.
We boarded the RiverCat which slowly made its way up the Parramatta River stopping at a number of places including Balmain, Cockatoo Island and the Sydney Olympic Park before arriving at Parramatta.
The fertile land of Paramatta was important to the early colonists and it still has a feel of being well away from the city.
We were able to walk from the ferry terminal to the racecourse past the attractive houses and the odd strange poster.
Arriving at the racecourse, we were pleasantly surprised by its attractive exterior and joined the colourful crowd walking up to the entrance. The racecourse has recently had a $28 million refurbishment and is one of the more attractive racecourses from around the world.
Rosehill Gardens is home to a number of top races including the world’s richest race for two-year-olds; the $3.5 million Longines Golden Slipper. Although the racecourse is similar to many British racecourses, however there are plenty of umbrellas to shelter from the hot sun.
We sat in the stands so we could take a look around the racecourse, like many other racecourses outside of the UK, the course is rather flat.
Although the dress code was quite informal, many people had dressed up to enjoy a day at the races and were enjoying the various food and drink options.
One of the reasons we like to go to the various sporting events when travelling is that you can meet the locals and have a chat in pleasant surroundings and throughout the afternoon we enjoyed the social and sporting aspects of the racecourse.
Although not familiar with many of the Australian racehorses, we managed to make a small profit before making our way to the nearby Rosehill station to get the train back to the city centre.
If you are in Sydney for a few days and you would like to get away from the usual tourist trails, it may be worth taking a trip on the RiverCat and enjoying a day racing at the very attractive Rosehill Gardens.
Old Fogies Travels are the adventures of two elderly Londoners (The Old Fogies) as they explore their home town and travel around the world looking out for the strange, unusual and absurd.
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