Thinking of planning a visit to our wonderful town over the summer? We’ve put together a fantastic list of 10 things to do in Newmarket. Whether you are looking at cramming activity into a few days or wanting to chill out and relax for a while.
You don’t even need to be a big fan of horseracing to appreciate any time that you get to spend around the fantastic horses, staff and facilities in Newmarket. Whether you are spending a morning on the famous Warren Hill gallops and heading behind the scenes in a racing yard to see the daily activity or spending time at The National Stud you will have a wonderful time of it.
This summer, Discover Newmarket is offering visitors exclusive opportunities to go behind the scenes at Carlburg Stables on the Roger Varian Tour, to see the incredible stallions and facilities on the Shadwell Tour and to experience a morning on the gallops and time in the historic Jockey Club Rooms during the Feature Tour. Meet new arrivals on a National Stud Tour as the Southern Hemisphere mares welcome their foals to the world during their time at the stud.
There’s also the chance to enjoy an indulgent Champagne Afternoon Tea and Tour of the Jockey Club Rooms on Sunday 25th August as well as the opportunity to dive into Newmarket’s links to the Royal family during the History and Heritage Walking Tour.
There are some exciting things going on at one of Newmarket’s top attractions this summer. A visit to Palace House offers up the chance to appreciate some wonderful sporting art, all housed in the remains of King Charles II’s sporting palace. Cast your eye over the work of the likes of Sir Alfred Munnings and take in the photographic exhibition by Marco Delogu with his work ‘The Thirty Assasins: Faces of the Palio on show until November.
This summer, Palace House are celebrating the work of George Stubbs with a special exhibition of some of his work. This focus on one of Britain’s most renowned animal painters also includes 10 works that have been loaned from the Yale Centre for British Art. It’s a must-see for any art lover.
There’s plenty for the children to see and do at Palace House with the Summer of Science taking place throughout the school holidays! This theme ties in with the George Stubbs exhibition and will cover science, biology, the human body, animal bodies and comparative anatomy. There will be loads of activities taking place in the ‘lab’ and children can get involved by putting on a lab coat and measuring bones and sketching skulls while also learning through a variety of workshops running on set dates.
No visit to Palace House is complete without having a go on the racehorse simulator and experiencing what it is like to ride a race like a jockey. There’s also the Retraining of Racehorses yard to visit which offers the chance to meet retired racehorses and learn more about the work done to prepare them for their second careers for disciplines like dressage, showjumping and polo.
Palace House is also one of the stops as part of the Saddle Up Art Trail, put together by the Animal Health Trust. Discover Newmarket are delighted to be involved as one of the sponsors of this event that is a free, fun and inspiring event in Newmarket that is allowing 17 artists to showcase their talents. These pieces have been dotted around town, two of them are at Palace House, and you can get involved by picking up a Trail Map during your visit and going along to see all the works.
When it comes to relaxing and unwinding the go-to place in Newmarket has to be the Bedford Lodge Hotel & Spa. Easy to find on the Bury Road, this wonderful setting is ideal for anyone wanting to enjoy an opulent day of first class treatments and spoils. The award-winning Spa at Bedford Lodge is considered to be among the finest in luxury spas in Suffolk and East Anglia. It’s the perfect place to retreat for a day of pampering or a weekend break.
Facilities include a hydrotherapy pool, an outdoor rooftop hot tub, a Rasul chamber for cleansing mud treatments, experiential showers and Ice Fountain, Thermal area with hammam table, a calming relaxation room and 10 beautifully styled treatment rooms.
Take advantage of a host of Special Offers this summer and plan the perfect Spa Day. Available packages include: Bamboo Sensation Spa Day, New Mum’s Relaxation Spa Escape, Summertime Treat, Summer Sizzler, Time Out For Two and the Hamper & Pamper Spa Day among a range of other excellent treatments. There’s also the option of upgrading your Spa Day packages to include an overnight stay, allowing you to make the most of the incredible facilities and idyllic setting.
This summer, Bedford Lodge Hotel & Spa are also offering their popular Picnic on the Lawn . Grab a picnic blanket and find the perfect spot on the lawns before having a rattan forage basket delivered to you that includes a selection of delicious cakes and pastries, freshly baked scones and a selection of freshly baked rolls along with two soft drinks of your choice and two POPS alcoholic ice lollies. Spend a few hours in the sunshine playing lawn games like Giant Jenga or Croquet or just relax with a book or great company.
Expect thrills and spills at the first Newmarket Soapbox Derby taking place on Sunday 25th August. Having built their soapboxes, teams must negotiate their way down Warren Hill in the quickest time in order to be crowned champions. It’s an event that will see Warren Hill, used by the town’s racehorses on a daily basis, transformed into a racetrack and will offer those with the need for speed to test themselves on a track that will include some obstacles. This promises to be a great day out for the whole family and there will be food vendors and entertainment on the day.
For more information on the Newmarket Soapbox Derby visit www.newmarketsoapboxderby.org.uk
Newmarket is the perfect place to base yourself during the summer. It’s location means that you can spend time exploring some of the wonderful surrounding towns and cities. You could even venture into London for the day with it only being a little over an hour away by train. In the more immediate vicinity you could spend the day exploring the historic colleges in Cambridge or venture over to Ely and take in the magnificent Ely Cathedral and spend time at Oliver Cromwell’s House. Take a look at the Visit Ely website for a list of ideas on things to see and do while you are visiting the area. Did you know that on a clear day you can see Ely Cathedral from the Limekilns gallops in Newmarket?
Bury St Edmunds is another Suffolk gem that is easy to get to from Newmarket with a short train ride or car journey. Spend time wondering the impressive Abbey Gardens and learn more on the history of Saint Edmund. Enjoy a drink at The Nutshell, said to be the smallest pub in the UK, or go on a tour of the Greene King Brewery. Take in a show at The Apex or The Theatre Royal, the last surviving Regency playhouse in the country. Take a look at the Bury St Edmunds and Beyond website for more ideas to plan a day out in the historic town.
There are some fantastic places in and around Newmarket where you can enjoy a delightful meal, take an Afternoon Tea or to enjoy a refreshing drink in the sunshine. Some of the venues that should be at the top of your list include the King’s Head in Dullingham, which was recently awarded with 2AA Rosettes, and The Packhorse Inn in Moulton, named one of Suffolk’s best pubs in the AA Pubs Guide 2020. The Squire’s restaurant at the Bedford Lodge Hotel & Spa is another worth making a reservation for.
Take in the fresh air of the countryside and get out enjoying the fantastic scenery. A stroll up Warren Hill in the early evening is a great way to kill some time and burn off some energy. Just be sure to stop at the top and admire the view. You can spot iconic locations like the sales ring at Tattersalls and the Millenium Grandstand at the Rowley Mile racecourse as well as some of the stud land that surrounds the town, the breeding ground to several champions past and present! Take the Three Churches Walk which links Dalham, Gazeley and Moulton or walk along the Devil’s Dyke with the July Course running alongside you. It’s a brilliant way to spend a few hours.
If last year’s event is anything to go by then 2019 promises to be bigger and better as the Newmarket Food and Drink Festival goes from strength to strength. Last year, 30 wonderful exhibitors all offered their wares in Palace Street and the vibe was amazing. This year’s event is taking place on the 14th & 15th September this is the chance to showcase some of East Anglia’s best produce and also allows top chefs to delight the crowd with their culinary skills.
Celebrity chef Rosemary Shrager returns this year and will be joined by the likes of Sci Daniels, Chris Martin and Mark Elvin. There’s also a fantastic lineup of live music to look forward to across both days with the Corkers Stage in the Palace House Gardens playing host. Click here for more information.
This year’s Newmarket Open Weekend is extra special given that it has been renamed the Henry Cecil Open Weekend in honour of the legendary trainer. This two day celebration allows visitors the chance to get access into some of Newmarket’s stable yards, stud farms and other facilities that are not usually open to the public. This is an annual pilgrimage for many racing fans as they try and get a glimpse of some of their favourite horses and meet trainers. It also offers the chance for anyone new to racing to get a glimpse of what life is like in Newmarket
There’s loads of activities planned as well with the popular showjumping event that pits trainers versus jockeys, stable staff games
A visit to the Home of Horseracing should really include a day at the races. The July Course is home to the action in summer and hosts a number of top class fixtures. The ever-popular Newmarket Nights are great if you’re a music lover and allow you to combine the excitement of an afternoon of racing with some of your favourite performers. Some of the remaining acts for this year include Rudimental, Pete Tong’s Ibiza Classics, Bananarama and Years & Years.
Of the other themed racedays to look forward to there’s the Gin & Fizz Raceday on the 20th July, Schools Out For Summer Raceday on the 27th July, the Peaky Blinders Official Raceday on the 3rd August, Royal British Legion Day on the 10th August, Country Fair Raceday on the 17th August and a Family Fun Day on the 23rd August.
It’s the perfect excuse to get a summer dress and heels out of the cupboard and for the gentlemen to be suited up. There are few greater thrills than shouting home a winner at one of the most charming venues in British racing. Book racing tickets by clicking here.
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