Formula 1 is one of the most spectacular shows on the planet. The best drivers in the world, the fastest cars, glamorous places across the planet full of history and other new and exotic locations, epic battles between drivers… it has it all.
The circuits are usually as impressive as the races since everything is designed to offer the best show both on the track and for the fans who attend. Each circuit has its own personality and unique characteristics, and in F1, there is a great variety: from traditional Grand Prix tracks boasting decades of history to ultra-modern facilities setting new standards for design.
However, most fans watch the races on television as it is the easiest and cheapest, but have you ever been to a Grand Prix or wondered what it would be like to go?
Below we show you the best European f1 races to attend, either because of the experience both in the race and outside of it, the location, and everything it can offer you during the Grand Prix weekend. Let’s get into it!
If you’re looking for some F1 merchandise, check out the awesome stuff at the official F1 store here.
1. Monaco Grand Prix: Circuit de Monaco
The Monaco GP is possibly the most iconic and famous race on the entire planet. Monaco represents luxury, glamor, prestige, and, of course, Formula 1. It is the race most people think of when they imagine Formula 1, staged in the tiny Principality on the French Riviera for almost 100 years.
It may not offer the most exciting races on TV, but ask any fan, and they’ll tell you they love Monaco. And it is that seeing the cars fly through the glamorous streets of the Principality a few centimeters from the walls is priceless; any slight miscalculation can be crucial as it can end your race.
The beautiful streets, the Casino de Monte-Carlo, the tunnel, the port area with the luxurious yachts … the Monaco GP is an audiovisual pleasure, especially if you attend the Grand Prix, as you will experience it from the inside.
There are no bad seats at the Monaco GP, as each place is unique, and you will see the cars from a very close and unique angle. Also, the nightlife in Monaco during the GP is very special. You can go to many bars, restaurants, and clubs, such as the iconic La Rascasse Bar (next to the corner of the same name), Jimmy’z Buddha Bar, The Living Room, or the world-famous Casino de Monte-Carlo.
And if your budget is smaller, you don’t have to stay in Monaco overnight, since you can look for accommodation in Nice, which is very close, or a nearby French town.
2. Italian Grand Prix: Autodromo Nazionale di Monza
Like Monaco, Monza is synonymous with Formula 1, passion, history, and racing. Monza is the quickest race on the calendar and one of the most evocative. It has hosted the most Grand Prix of any circuit ever, as it was first laid in 1922. The race at Monza is one of the most exciting races on the F1 calendar to watch on TV, but above all, to attend.
The atmosphere created by the Tifosi is surreal. And it is that Monza is also synonymous with Ferrari, and the Tifosi are one of the most passionate, charismatic, and dedicated fans in the world, which is why the Grand Prix grandstands are always dyed red.
As in Monaco, there are no bad seats since all its places are iconic and ideal. Navigating the thrilling first chicane, the Variante del Rettifilo, the dangerous Curve di Lesmo, the Variante Ascari, or the tricky Curva Parabolica provides viewers with the fanfare they desire.
And after the race, when the track opens to the public, you will experience one of the best podium celebrations. If a Ferrari wins, the experience will be idyllic, as the Tifosi will take it to another level.
The location of the circuit is perfect since it is close to the city of Milan, where you can visit numerous monuments such as the Cathedral or the Ferrari Museum. In addition, it is also located near the stunning Lake Como. It will be a wonderful experience to enjoy F1 in its purest version and go sightseeing.
3. British Grand Prix: Silverstone Circuit
The British GP is also one of the most iconic races on the F1 calendar. It has taken place since 1926, and, together with the Italian Grand Prix, they have been the only F1 championship events to have been held in all seasons since its inception in 1950.
The historic Silverstone Circuit has hosted some of the best races in history, and it rarely disappoints. Like the previous circuits, you can attend any part of the circuit, as none will disappoint you. From Abbey, Brooklands or Copse, to Maggots and Becketts, Hangar Straight, or Stowe, there is plenty of action on the track, and the grandstands are a prime spot to watch the race.
The F1 British Grand Prix is the biggest and fastest sporting event in the UK, and after a record-breaking attendance in 2021, nothing less is expected in 2022. Plus, it’s an unrivaled weekend festival of unlimited fun, energy, and entertainment with plenty of action on and off the track.
And we call it a festival because apart from racing, there are events all day and every night of the weekend, from Friday to Sunday. The breadth of the circuit and its surroundings allow for many activities and crowded events, such as concerts with world-class guest artists, numerous street food shops, merchandise shops, and many F1-related leisure activities.
You can also visit the official museum of the circuit and to stay you can sleep in the campsite, full of fan atmosphere, or accommodations in nearby places, not very expensive.
4. Belgian Grand Prix: Circuit de Spa-Francorchamps
The Circuit de Spa-Francorchamps is also a classic and an icon not only for Formula 1 but also for motorsports in general, making the Belgian GP one of the most special events on the F1 calendar. It hosted its first Grand Prix in 1925 and has been on the F1 calendar consistently.
Located in the Ardennes, seen from the sky, the circuit is lost in the green and lush forest. At just over 7 kilometers long, the Circuit de Spa-Francorchamps is the longest on the calendar and one of the fastest and most dangerous. Its characteristics, ups, and downs, twists and turns make it a true roller coaster to drive, and it’s no wonder it’s one of many drivers’ favorite tracks.
Races at the Circuit de Spa-Francorchamps are always exciting, and the weather has always been a key player at this incredible circuit. We have seen everything on this circuit, even snow in summer! The weather is very changeable, and due to the magnitude of the circuit, it may rain on one part of the track while the sun shines on another, adding a bonus to the show.
As we have been saying in the previous circuits, there are no bad seats here, although without a doubt the best ones are those located in what is (with permission from the Grand Hotel corner in Monaco) the most iconic and famous corner in F1: Eau Rouge. These seats are perfect for watching cars go by at incredible speed on a unique grade change.
The atmosphere on the circuit is also incredible, and you can find numerous food and merchandising stands distributed throughout the track. Also, many Dutch fans cross the border, creating an orange tide supporting Max Verstappen.
5. Austrian Grand Prix: Red Bull Ring
And speaking of circuits located in forests, we cannot forget the Red Bull Ring in Spielberg, Austria, which is also one of the best races of the season to attend.
Built in 1969, the Österreichring, as it was initially called, hosted races between 1997 and 2003, after being remodeled in 1996 and renamed the A1-Ring. It was acquired by Red Bull in 2010 and has been on the calendar since 2014. The giant energy drink brand has spared no expense, and the track now has modern, world-class facilities.
The circuit is surrounded by nature between hills, making it very beautiful. Racing is always thrilling and exciting with ups, downs, and fast corners. In addition, this race is where some of the most passionate fans come from all over Europe and the world. This was the first circuit where the Orange Army of Max Verstappen fans was seen, which since then has only grown.
A bit like Silverstone, the Austrian Grand Prix is not just an F1 race; it is a true festival, with events every day such as concerts, parties, and places to eat. The grandstands are close to the track, and any one of them offers an incredible view of the action and the surroundings.
You can stay in places around the area, which will not disappoint; however, most fans choose to camp on the circuit. And let’s not forget one of the most important things: beer is not lacking at the Red Bull Ring! What better than to watch an F1 race live with a beer in hand?
6. Dutch Grand Prix: Circuit Park Zandvoort
The Dutch Grand Prix was held for the first time in 2021 at the Zandvoort circuit after being absent since 1985, and we were all pleasantly surprised by its show on and off the track.
The Dutch Grand Prix was held non-stop from 1952 to 1985, and in 2019 it was announced that it would be added to the F1 calendar in 2020 after the track had been redesigned, although the pandemic delayed its celebration until 2021.
And it is that already in its first appearance in more than 30 years; it has become one of the most popular races for fans. Located next to the beach outside Amsterdam, one of Europe’s most popular cities, the circuit offers a great racing atmosphere and full of life.
And if we talk about the Max Verstappen fans on previous circuits, here at home, the Orange Army reached an absolute fever pitch across the race weekend, especially when the young Dutch crossed the finish line in first position. The Dutch were in charge of providing a unique atmosphere during the weekend, matching even the passion of the Tifosi with smoke flares, music, and parties.
The classic layout offers many grandstands where you can see the action on the track in detail. As we said before, its proximity to the city of Amsterdam will allow you to visit one of the cities with the most charm, atmosphere, and places to see not only of Europe but of the world.
7. Spanish Grand Prix: Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya
The Spanish Grand Prix is one of the oldest races in the world, held for the first time in 1913. Until the 90s, it was held consistently, alternating between the Montjuic, Jarama, and Jerez circuits. Since 1991 it has been held every year on the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya, better known as Montmeló.
It may not always offer the most exciting races, but the experience is entirely different from the inside. The great advantages of the Circuit de Barcelona circuit are its facilities, prices, and location.
It has many grandstands of all kinds and many facilities that allow easy and cheap access to everyone. In addition, it has plenty of space filled with recreational activities for fans and places to eat.
It is only 20 kilometers from the city of Barcelona, so you can stay there and visit this fantastic tourist city in the process. There are numerous means of transport to the circuit, such as trains and buses, although you can also choose to go by car or taxi.
In addition, due to its location, many fans come to the race from different places, such as France or Italy, so the atmosphere is fantastic. Spanish fans also stand out, fervently cheering on Fernando Alonso and Carlos Sainz, who have had stands dedicated to their fans in previous years.
8. Hungarian Grand Prix: Hungaroring
The Hungarian Grand Prix was held in 1936 for the first time, but it was not until 1986, replacing the Dutch Grand Prix, that it was included in the F1 calendar. Since then, it has been around every year, taking place at the Hungaroring.
The Hungaroring is a narrow and winding track with slow and fast corners, which often offers entertaining races. It is also one of the tracks where race strategy is most crucial.
The circuit is located in the town of Mogyoród, 18 kilometers from Budapest. Suppose you have not been to Budapest yet. In that case, I recommend you to go, as it is one of the most incredible and beautiful cities in the world, and you can stay there for an affordable price, so the Hungarian GP can be a perfect excuse to visit this city.
Due to its location, many fans from many European countries flock to the race, so you will find fans from all places cheering on any driver and team, thus forming a mix of cultures. You can find fans of all kinds supporting Ferrari, Red Bull, Mercedes … so there is always a mixture of colors in the grandstands.
The facilities are extensively renovated, and there are many grandstands to choose from, and as it takes place in the second half of July, the weather is almost always good. So bring your favorite driver’s jersey, no matter who it is, and fly to Budapest for a weekend full of excitement.
9. Emilia Romagna Grand Prix: Imola
The Emilia Romagna GP has been on the calendar since the 2020 season, as the original calendar was affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. For the 2021 season, it was also held for the same reason. It is expected that in 2022 it will also be held again.
The Emilia Romagna GP takes its name from the Italian region where it is located, as it is held at the mythical Autodromo Enzo e Dino Ferrari, better known as Imola, where the San Marino GP was held from 1981 to 2006.
The Imola circuit is a narrow and classic track, as it was built in 1953. It is a fast track, with ups and downs, and famous for being where the legendary Brazilian driver Ayrton Senna died at the now non-existent Tamborello corner.
It’s a track where a lot of motor racing takes place, and it might be a bit tight for today’s F1 cars, but in 2021 it offered us one of the best races of the season, partly due to the rain.
Visually it is a quite beautiful circuit since it is located in a very green area, 30 kilometers from Bologna. It is a region with a lot of history and beautiful towns to visit.
The facilities and the circuit have been renovated, so the grandstands are very modern. We cannot forget the Tifosi in Italy, also present at this Grand Prix.
The Emilia Romagna GP will offer you a weekend of motorsport in the most classic and pure way that will not disappoint you, perfect for the most purist public interested in racing and history, so get lost in this iconic track!
10. French Grand Prix: Circuit Paul Ricard
The French Grand Prix is one of the oldest, having been held for the first time in 1906, and since the inception of the F1 championship in 1950, it has been held consistently.
After a 9-year absence, the French GP returned in 2018 and is currently held at the Paul Ricard circuit in Le Castellet, Var, near Marseille, where numerous GPs were held from 1971 to 1990.
At 5.8 kilometers long, it is one of the longest tracks of the season. The circuit was renovated a few years ago and has long served as a test and development circuit, hence its many variants.
On the outside of the track, its blue and red lines stand out, replacing the gravel, made of a technological material that also reduces speed. Thanks to a plumbing system implemented underneath, the track can also get artificially wet.
All its facilities are practically new, and although it is not a circuit that usually gives exciting races, the experience is totally different live. The French GP gathers a large crowd of fans, and there are numerous shows throughout the weekend.
At the end of June, its location and the date on which it is held provide excellent weather conditions to enjoy a great weekend of racing. The surroundings are very beautiful, and you can get lost along the French coast or, if you prefer, in the nearby towns of the countryside.
No specific race is the best to attend, as each offers a unique and different experience, so it depends on your preferences.
I hope that in this article you have learned more things and have discovered what is the best European F1 race to attend for you, and who knows, maybe you will dare to take the leap and go to one.
- 8 best Formula 1 races to go to in 2022 – Motorsport Tickets Blog
- The 3 best Formula 1 races to attend for nightlife (f1experiences.com)
- Top 5 Racing Formula 1 Circuits of All Time – Montreal Grand Prix
- The 10 Best Grand Prix Circuits for Formula 1 Fans (roadtrips.com)
- Seven Formula 1 races we’re excited to attend in 2021 (f1experiences.com)
- Circuit Paul Ricard > Grand Prix de France – Le Castellet (gpfrance.com)