What options are there for gamblers in Harrogate?

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Harrogate is famous for Betty’s Tearooms, its glorious gardens and wealth of summer events.
On the other hand, Harrogate is not well known for its gambling – there’s no casino, dog or horse-racing track. There are a couple of slot rooms, including Magenta Slots and XO Casino Slots – but they won’t set your pulses racing like other forms of gambling.
With that in mind, what are the best options for Harrogate residents who fancy a flutter?
Brick-and-mortar casinos
If brick-and-mortar casinos are your thing, your best bet is to venture into Leeds, which is 15.5 miles to the south of Harrogate.
One of the best-known establishments in Leeds is Grosvenor Casinos. Boasting a four-star review average on Google, you find Grosvenor on Wellington Bridge Street. Here, you find slot machines and all the usual gaming tables, as well as a late bar.
While not as well as known, Napoleons on Bingley Street has probably the best reputation among gamblers in Leeds, with many pointing to its relaxed atmosphere and friendly staff.
Horse racing
The closest and best horseracing track to Harrogate is Wetherby Racecourse. Situated in the lovely market town, the course is just 10 miles (or 20 minutes’ drive) from the centre of Harrogate.
In 2016, the racecourse was subject to a £3.2 million redevelopment program and it now includes a new stand, as well as luxury banquet and conference facilities. You’ll also a number of fixed-odds betting facilities.
Pontefract Racecourse is just under 30 miles (or 40 minutes’ drive) from Harrogate town centre. However, this isn’t one of the country’s major venues – in fact it only hosts 12 fixtures per year.
Dog racing
If you like dog racing, you have two options (within an hour from Harrogate): Kinsley Greyhound Stadium near Pontefract, or Doncaster Greyhound Stadium.
It takes around 55 minutes to get to Kinsley Stadium and a solid hour to get to Doncaster from Harrogate. Racing at both courses takes place on Friday and Saturday nights.
Online gaming
While Harrogate is a lovely town, there isn’t much to keep the high rollers busy on their nights off. So obviously, you have to make the effort to go Leeds, Pontefract (or God forbid, Doncaster) to enjoy traditional gaming.
But online gambling makes it easy and quick to find excitement at the virtual gaming tables or slots. And whereas most of the venues demand a joining or entrance fee, you can practice online roulette for free here.
With hundreds of different versions of roulette, blackjack, pontoon and slots at your disposal, as well as a host of attractive sign-up bonuses on offer, there really is no reason to venture out of Harrogate if you want soak up the excitement of the casino atmosphere.