Travel Review  

Holidays on horseback

Whether you are drawn to the great outdoors for a quiet, scenic trail ride or wish to experience life on a working ranch, horse riding holidays have it all.  So much is offered on a horseback riding holiday: endless rugged back country, or snow capped mountains, expansive flatlands of the prairies, fast flowing and powerful rivers, pristine glacier lakes and a thrilling array of wildlife.
With a variety of overnight accommodations varieties: in tents, luxury cabins, lodges and ranches... a holiday on horseback can offer numerous destinations from which to explore the great outdoors

Main Categories for an Equine Holiday are: Riding Holidays; Safaris on Horseback; Ranch Holidays and Riding Expeditions.

On a Riding Holiday, whether to Spain, South Africa, California or Mexico, you are sure to enjoy some great riding, be hosted with local style, enjoy local cuisine and learn about local culture. Did you know? You can enter an endurance ride in Namibia! 

Safari on Horseback in Africa is truly a spectacular, once in a lifetime experience. It’s impossible to beat the excitement of watching a large herd of wildlife as your horse quietly grazes. Some safaris on horseback are in areas where there is no dangerous game and therefore are suitable for all levels of rider, including children. Other safaris, in areas where you might encounter elephant, lion or buffalo, are only for experienced riders. Accommodation varies from luxury safari lodges and very comfortable spacious safari tents with their own private bathrooms to simple bush camps with outhouses and bucket showers.

A Ranch Holiday gives you the opportunity to live out a dream and take yourself to the world of John Wayne. These holidays are often in areas offering an environment where you feel part of a Western movie. You can even choose a working ranch where you have the chance to be a real-life cowboy and move cattle on horseback; or enjoy a relaxing guest ranch with stunning mountain scenery or endless plains and flatlands for riding.

A Riding Expedition is a filled journey on horseback that will leave you with an experience to remember and scenery which you might otherwise not have had the opportunity to see. On these rides you need to take a little more care to pack the appropriate clothing for the trip and to make sure you are fit enough for the journey. On many of the expeditions you camp in small two-man dome tents with sleeping bags on mats and limited bathroom facilities. These offer a true ''roughing it'' experience. However on others,  you can choose to stay in hotels or farm houses and have a more comfortable place to spend the night.

Riding holidays are a very social experience and, with a common love of horses and the outdoors, people generally get on very well together. They provide an excellent travel opportunity for a single traveller looking for a unique group experience. New friendships are sure to develop.

There are riding holidays for all levels of experience so it's important to make sure you choose a ride that matches your riding ability. Find out as much as possible about the pace of ride and how many hours you will actually spend in the saddle. And as for the Horses, they are well trained and versed in the ''tourist'' rider. Companies offering horseback holidays will provide an animal that suits your needs and the necessary equipment. And if you are uncertain about your overall fitness for a holiday on a horse, then choose a ride which isn’t going to be too physically demanding. An important factor to keep in mind is to ensure you have a valid travel insurance policy and check that it covers you for a riding holiday.

A professional travel consultant can help you make all the needed arrangements for such an exciting adventure.

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About the Author

Laura has been a successful Certified Travel Counsellor since February 1999. She has worked in both Corporate and Vacation travel departments and has extensive experience as an avid traveller. She currently works as a Senior Consultant at one of the Okanagan's most popular agencies.

To reach her for inquiries you can email: [email protected]


"If you look like your passport photo - you probably need the vacation!"

Your Travel Agent

Laura-Beth Konschuh-Penney

The views expressed are strictly those of the author and not necessarily those of Castanet. Castanet does not warrant the contents.

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