The Melbourne Cup experience


The Melbourne Cup is another one of those Aussie traditions that you simply have to join in – along with Anzac Day, Australia Day and the annual cricket tests (seriously, give the game a chance!) If you didn’t know it was on today keep reading to find out what all the fuss is about or you’ll be surprised when everyone disappears to watch the telly at 3pm.

Basically the Cup is a horse race for thoroughbreds. But it’s not just any old horse race, this one’s a big deal with over $6.2M in prize money. The race is 3200m and for horses over three years old, plus it’s handicapped, so it starts to get a bit interesting when you consider all that.

It’s also a lot of fun for people to don their hat, gloves, stockings, suits and fancy wear and head out for a day of fun at Flemington Racecourse. Sometimes people just have parties in their office spaces.

Image from Photo: Mark Metcalfe

This year Nicole Kidman and Her Royal Highness Camilla Parker Bowles are among just some of the celebrities gracing the field in Melbourne itself. And their bound to lay a bit of a punt themselves.

The Cup been held the first Tuesday every year in November since 1861, so that’s a lot of years that Aussies, and our Kiwi neighbours, have been getting into this race. It’s also a public holiday in greater Melbourne and the ACT – they’ve got their priorities right down there.

Still you’ll find businesses all over Australia and New Zealand organising Cup day parties, betting, and heading to televisions at 3pm to bet on the race – and do we like to bet. And if you do too, there’s still time to get in on the action.

Happy Melbourne Cup day everyone.


Hope you’re enjoying the VIP Backpacker’s Travel Blog. If there are any travel topics you want covered feel free to contact Jo at


One thought on “The Melbourne Cup experience

  1. Pingback: Great Aussie workplace traditions « Vipbackpackers's Blog

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