With its art deco exterior, classy paddock gardens and San Gabriel Mountains backdrop, Santa Anita Park conjures a romanticized time when horse racing was the sophisticated sport and vice of choice (it's no surprise it's a popular filming location). But the Arcadia venue has also played host to fierce, skillful competition—a handful of the track's premier meets date back to 1935, a year after the venue opened—and continues to today, in particular as the frequent home of the Breeders' Cup. Races typically run Thursday through Sunday from the day after Christmas until the end of June, and you can expect to see an influx of meets taken over from the now shuttered Hollywood Park. The venue has a helpful site for wagering newbies, but those more interested in fascinators and fedoras than fillies and foals will find plenty to do, too, whether at the bar or during the off-season at events such as the 626 Night Market.
Santa Anita Park also affectionately refers to itself as the "Home of Seabiscuit"—the unlikely champion raced on the track 11 times, including in his final start. Free tram tours depart at 8:30am and 9:45am every Saturday and Sunday during race season to visit Barn 38, where the famous horse often stayed.