I’ve been to the Derby in about every location on track that they have - infield, grandstand, paddock only, clubhouse, corporate tent - haven’t been to millionaire’s row or the turf club though! Before 9–11 we could party in the barn area and that was the best of course but very restricted nowadays. If you want to see old pics from the backside on Derby Day, check out this link -
I always had fun, but you have to put in the effort to dress comfortably for where you will be, and the weather, and personally I probably won’t ever attend again unless I can go to the clubhouse or turf club, ha. The cost of a clubhouse ticket for one person on Derby Day is minimum $2000. Turf Club I’m guessing around $10,000.
Like another writer said, the TV experience is very good because you get all the background stories on the horses, owners, trainers, jockeys. You don’t get all that when you’re at the track. If you’re lucky enough to have a front row seat at the Derby, it really is a thrill to be there in person.