Thrilling footie matches, world-famous horse racing, and the county’s strangest events, Gloucestershire has it all.
From famous annual events and popular festivals to the well-loved rugby and football seasons, there’s a sport to bowl everyone over, from fun-filled to fiercely competitive events.
1. Cheltenham Racecourse
The jewel in jump racing’s crown, Cheltenham Racecourse is one of the county’s most famous landmarks. Playing host to some of the best horse racing action in the world every year, the festival makes for an unforgettable day out.
Attracting punters, fun seekers, and sports fans from across Gloucestershire and far beyond, the racecourse sees eight thrilling features each season, with the four-day Cheltenham Festival and Gold Cup the undisputed highlight in the racecourse’s calendar.
2. Cheese Rolling
The annual Cheese Rolling event on Cooper’s Hill is a sporting event like no other. The event, unparalleled in its uniqueness, and completely exclusive to Gloucestershire, is one of the wackiest affairs around.
Taking place annually in May, the world-famous sporting event sees spectators flocking from far and wide to watch daring contestants hurtle down the steep slope in pursuit of a weighty Double Gloucester cheese, making for a hilarious and somewhat nerve-racking display.
3. Gloucester Rugby
With an unwaveringly loyal following and an ever-unbeatable atmosphere, a Gloucester Rugby match at Kingsholm Stadium promises a brilliant day out for families, friends, and dedicated sports fans eager to catch the Cherry and Whites in action.
Whether you want to cheer on Gloucester’s top rugby club during an AVIVA Premiership match, the European Challenge Cup, or Anglo-Welsh Cup, the 16,500-capacity stadium welcomes newbies and regulars with open arms, and promises an exciting sporting experience in the heart of the city.
4. Cheltenham Town FC
The county’s leading football club, Cheltenham Town FC, entertains crowds during regular matches at its home stadium, Whaddon Road, promising 90 minutes of spirited sporting action from start to finish.
A family-friendly club, Cheltenham Town FC is the perfect day out for football fans of all ages to watch the local professional team as they strive for victory.
5. Sandford Parks Lido
Aswell as offering a heated outdoor swimming pool to cool off in during the summer months, Sandford Parks Lido also plays host to a range of entertaining spectator events throughout the year, from competitive races to novelty swims.
Highlights include the annual Christmas Swim which sees locals take the plunge into ice cold water.
6. Forest Green Rovers FC
Recently described by Fifa as the greenest football club in the world, Forest Green Rovers FC offers enjoyable sporting entertainment with a dedicated focus on sustainability.
What’s more, a visit to see the Green Devils play not only promises action on the pitch, but a chance to tuck into delicious food and drinks which go far beyond the stereotypical pies and chips, with the club having officially become the world’s first vegan football club.
7. Football in the River
A footie match with a fun-filled twist, Football in the River sees two teams take to the waters of the River Windrush for a novelty kick about with a splashing difference.
Traditionally taking place every August for over 70 years, the event in Bourton-on-the-Water promises a hilarious and totally unique sporting spectacle. Hundreds of onlookers gather on the river bank to cheer on the teams, with those in the front rows very likely to get soaked!
8. Prescott Speed Hill Climb
Located on the outskirts of Cheltenham, Prescott Speed Hill Climb is a prestigious motor racing venue which promises a fast-paced, adrenaline-fueled day out for spectators at any one of its motorised events.
With highlights including the annual Prescott Bike Festival; weekend celebration La Vie en Blue; and the Midsummer Speed Festival, motorheads are in for an exhilarating day out at the world-famous attraction.
9. Gloucestershire Cricket Club
Located just beyond the border in Bristol, Gloucestershire Cricket Club is one of the 18 first class County Cricket Clubs in the UK, and organiser of the hugely popular annual Cheltenham Cricket Festival.
Playing host to a range of matches which encompass everything from four-day county championships to one-day tourist matches, supporters and first timers will be bowled over by the riveting sporting action on the field.
10. Cirencester Park Polo Club
A quintessential day out for Gloucestershire sports fans, Cirencester Polo Club welcomes visitors to its regular games which take place between April and September.
Visitors to the polo can usually be found lounging on picnic blankets with their shades on and a glass of fizz in hand, enjoying the matches with families and friends.
11. Hartpury Festival of Dressage
Offering a fantastic five days of equestrian displays and exciting championships, Hartpury Festival of Dressage is a highlight in the annual events calendar, and is sure to delight equine lovers and sports fans alike.
Promising outstanding equestrian sport displays, a day out at the festival encompasses exciting competitions and championships, boasting hundreds of horses, national showcases, and the best talent in both the able bodied and para dressage.