Site Requires Javascript - turn on javascript!

Australia's Spring Racing Carnival


The Spring Racing Carnival is a three month-long world class festival showcasing thoroughbred racing, fashion and entertainment at its finest. From Camperdown to Caulfield, and from Manangatang to Moonee Valley, visitors will find plenty of horse racing excitement, fabulous fashion and social events at both Victorian city and country tracks. The highlight of the carnival is the Melbourne Cup, held every year on the first Tuesday in November. Known as the ‘race that stops a nation’, Melbourne Cup Day is a public holiday in Victoria. It is celebrated with luncheons and social events in workplaces and venues around the country.

From mid-September to mid-November Victoria is gripped by racing fever combining elite racing, fashion, fun and excitement. From Camperdown to Caulfield, and from Manangatang to Moonee Valley, The Spring Racing Carnival showcases all that is great about Victoria with meetings staged in both the capital city of Melbourne and at picturesque country racecourses across Victoria.

The highlight of the carnival is the Melbourne Cup, known as ‘the race that stops a nation’. However, the Spring Racing Carnival is more than just the Melbourne Cup. It includes a number of high profile lead up races including the Caulfield Cup and the Cox Plate.

First run in 1879, the Caulfield Cup is the world's richest 2400 metre handicap. It is the first of the big three spring races: the Caulfield Cup; Cox Plate and the Melbourne Cup.

First run in 1922, the Cox Plate is Australia's premier weight for age race. It is the second of the ‘big three' events of spring and the third richest race in Australia behind the Melbourne Cup and the Golden Slipper.

There are also many cultural and fashion events during the carnival, and the city streets and laneways buzz with excitement.

Country Racing Spring Carnival race days are also colourful, glamorous and exciting, and allow visitors to celebrate spring racing at a more leisurely pace while enjoying the Victorian countryside. Spring Racing fashion, gourmet food and fine wines, fun outdoor children’s activities, entertainment and action-packed horse races all come together in some stunning country locations. Venture up into the high country amongst the picnic clubs, breathtaking views and crisp air. Visit the Murray and see some of Victoria's oldest tracks.

More articles like this

Great Walks of Australia

Great Walks of Australia

Discover Australia's collection of premium guided walk experiences. These multi-day walks let you explore spectacular regions of the country in comfort.

View more information

Add to your dream trip Add to your favourites add favourite
Great Golf Courses of Australia

Great Golf Courses of Australia

Australia has six of the world’s best golf courses plus many more unique courses well worth playing all across the country.

View more information

Add to your dream trip Add to your favourites add favourite
Surfing in Australia

Surfing in Australia

Australia's surf beaches, where first-class waves for all surfing abilities crash, are born from the Pacific Ocean in the east, the Indian Ocean in the west and the Southern Ocean in the south . Visit iconic Bells Beach, near Torquay, the gateway to Victoria's Surf Coast on the Great Ocean Road. In New South Wales, Byron Bay, Newcastle, Sydney and its south coast offer a superior swell. Hang out in Burleigh Heads or coast along one of the world's longest waves at Snapper Rocks on Queensland's Gold Coast. In South Australia, great surf beaches dot the Fleurieu, Yorke and Eyre peninsulas as well as the Limestone Coast. In Western Australia, Perth, Margaret River and Esperance are home to an abundance of surf beaches. Brave Tasmania's Southern Ocean swells in Hobart, Bruny Island, Launceston, Devonport and Marrawah. You'll find a wave to yourself on our uncrowded and pristine coastal beaches.

View more information

Add to your dream trip Add to your favourites add favourite
Canoeing and Kayaking in Australia

Canoeing and Kayaking in Australia

From tranquil inlets and backwaters to picturesque rivers and gorges, Australia offers many places to paddle. Canoe the Blackwood River, which meanders through Western Australia's south-west, or along the maze of calm waterways in South Australia's Coorong. Sea kayak off St Kilda Beach in Melbourne or under Sydney's Harbour Bridge. White water raft the furious rapids of Tasmania's Franklin River or the Tully River in North Queensland. Canoe or kayak through the Northern Territory's Katherine Gorge or paddle around Canberra's Lake Burley Griffin. Hire a kayak for a few hours or spend a few days on a canoeing safari through one of our pristine national parks.

View more information

Add to your dream trip Add to your favourites add favourite
Houseboating along the Murray River

Houseboating along the Murray River

From slow food to high-speed adventure, a houseboat holiday down Australia's mighty Murray River has something for everyone. Kids and captains alike will love discovering the Murray, which winds between New South Wales and Victoria, then through South Australia to the ocean. Moor at secluded beaches or at historic riverside towns such as Echuca-Moama, Mildura, Swan Hill, Renmark and Loxton. Enjoy leisurely indulgence at the restaurants, wineries and golf courses. Or embrace one of the Murray's many natural adventures. Learn to water ski, canoe the lagoons, bird-watch in the wetlands and bushwalk through the red gum forests.

View more information

Add to your dream trip Add to your favourites add favourite