Five best horse shows in Australia

What is a horse show?

A horse show can be defined as an exhibition of horses.  Different kinds of horse breeds and equestrian disciplines hold horse competitions worldwide. There are ten international disciplines that are run under the rules established under Fédération équestre Internationale (FEI):

  • Tent pegging
  • Reining
  • Eventing
  • Paraequestrianism
  • Show jumping
  • Vaulting
  • Combined driving
  • Dressage
  • Tent pegging
  • Endurance riding.

In Australia, horse shows are generally governed by the Equestrian Australia, Show Horse Council of Australia and other breed societies. Horse shows are very popular with the older demographic and people living in the rural areas.  We have listed below some of the top horse shows in Australia.


1. The Barastoc Horse of The Year Show:


The Equestrian Federation of Australia Inc hosts the Barastoc Horse of the year show. It was established in the year 1951 a was incorporated in the year 1985.


The Barastoc Horse of the Year has grown to be one of Australia’s biggest horse shows. It is also one of the most prestigious horse shows in the world. This show attracts thousands of exhibitors and spectators from Australia and New Zealand. The title of the Barastoc Horse of the Year is decided by international judges. 


The first ever Barastoc Horse of the Year show was held in 1970. During the first Barastoc events, the horses had to warm up on the banks of the Yarra and work out weaving around show jumps on the Olympic Park arena. Soon after it was launched the Barastoc became the event every show rider wanted to go to.


In the year 1979, the event had out-grown Olympic Park and was moved to the Melbourne Showgrounds in Ascot Vale. Three judges were appointed to judge ten horses.


In 1991 the event was moved to the Werribee Park National Equestrian Center after much discussion. The center proved to be a big advantage for the event. The number of judges was also increased to four. Each judge was supposed to judge a preliminary section of the show and the four judges will come together for the final Horse of the Year events.


In the year 2012, the Barastoc show released a  print magazine. The Barastoc Horse of the Year show has evolved greatly over the years. It has become the most prestigious horse show in the whole of Australia. Criteria for entry can be found on the event's official website. You can contact the organization directly for more details.


2. The Royal Melbourne Show:


The Royal Melbourne Show Horses is a show which celebrates the best horses and riders.  The event receives over  2,000 entries from more than 350 exhibitors every year. Participants compete across 250 classes annually. The events also include programs like hunting, show jumping, stock horses, harness, saddle horse and riding classes.


The contest has made a name for itself by providing breeders, riders, and owners a benchmark against some of the finest horses in the country. The Royal Melbourne Show Horses offers $80,000 in prizes. They are a part of the Royal Agricultural Society of Victoria which celebrates and promotes nature.


 The Royal Melbourne Show has become the Victoria’s largest annual community event. It has become one of the most important events in the community. Around 500,000 visitors are attracted to the Royal Melbourne Show each year. The Royal Agricultural Society of Victoria is also known to hold the largest outdoor exhibition during this event. There are trade shows, film production, concerts and other events held during the Royal Melbourne Show.


3. Sydney Royal Horse show:


The Horse Competitions held during the Sydney Royal Easter Show, are the biggest attractions of the event. The show attracts a large audience. The Sydney Royal Horse show gets more than 6,000 nominations annually. More than twenty-four horse breed classes participate in this event. Riding classes along with show jumping, camp draft, heavy and light harness,  rodeo,  polo, polocrosse, riding for the disabled, heavy horse obstacle classes, tent pegging, pony club, and police horse events are held. There are more than 1,000 classes in Sydney Royal Horse show. This event is the most attended event in the community. To register for this event go to their official website.


4. Royal Adelaide Show:


The Royal Adelaide Show is an agricultural show held by the Royal Agricultural and Horticultural Society of South Australia. The show is held annually in September and runs for ten days. It is held in Wayville, a suburb of Adelaide, South Australia. Since the beginnin the show has been held at the Adelaide Showground. It is one of the most popular horse shows in Australia. Around half a million people attend this event annually. It is also the biggest local event in the state of Adelaide. 


The Royal Adelaide Show has many competitive events related to livestock, art, food, wine, and photography. The event gets 30,000 entries annually. 


The event features entertainment, exhibitors, sideshows, rides, food stalls and show bags. The animal exhibition has a huge section for horses. The Horticultural Society of South Australia runs the show.


To take part in the  Royal Adelaide Horse Show you need to send your entry before the first week of September. Other details are on their website.


5. National Capital Horse Show:


The National Capital Horse Show is run by the Arabs Inc. - Arabian Riders & Breeders Inc. The Arabian Riders & Breeders Inc was established in the year 1962.


The key focus of the National Capital Horse Show is the Arabian horse but now members do exhibit other breeds. Almost all breeds are on display in the show. The Australian Arabian horse community is closed to non-members but outsiders can become members.


The National Capital Horse Show is held every year in November. It is held at the Canberra Showgrounds also known as the EPIC - Exhibition Park in Canberra. There are various events held during the National Capital Horse Show. You can contact the Arabs Inc. via Facebook and on its official website.