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Horsey holiday of a life time

66 replies

Thequeenofthetypis · 04/08/2023 19:21

I'm currently on holidays with 2 temperamental tweens, an oh who wants to sleep all day and my mother in law! Tbf, the mil is probably the easiest company of all them.
But I'm dreaming of a holiday where I get to do exactly what I want all day every day. If money was no object ( I can start saving) where would you recommend for a horsey holiday? I would like lovely scenery, pretty much riding all day every day, but near coast or lakes for regular swimming, so good weather also. Don't need luxury accommodation, basic is good enough. I'm a horse owner/ advanced rider, can sit on pretty much anything and up for anything really.
Also will be on my own do safe for woman solo travelling a must. Is this too much to ask?? Maybe I should put in aibu 😁

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Crazykatie · 04/08/2023 19:37

Sounds like a week trekking in Wales I’m sure there are stables that would let you join a group, google it

DiDonk · 04/08/2023 19:40

Baie de Somme. Hack around the country then onto the coast, lovely long beach, swim with your horse. Have a good meal, repeat.

Thequeenofthetypis · 04/08/2023 19:44

Thanks @Crazykatie Wales definitely has the potential to tick the boxes, but I'm thinking more guaranteed good weather.... and a teeny bit more adventure/ exotic feeling.
I'm googling away here, looking at 7 nights in Andalusia, which looks amazing. Also a week trekking in Morocco, but not sure if I'd feel safe on my own...

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Thequeenofthetypis · 04/08/2023 19:46

Thanks @DiDonk
Not planning to actually bring my own horse, not sure the funds would stretch to that!!! I was thinking more trekking with an organised group.

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maxelly · 04/08/2023 19:52

We fulfilled a lifetime ambition last year and went on a horseback safari at a luxury game resort in South Africa, which would fulfill a lot of your asks. We stayed in a nice lodge although luxury safari tents were also available, either option very comfortable. There was a lake although swimming in it was off most days due to the presence of the resident hippo family, but we did get to take the horses swimming one day when the hippo were elsewhere. Absolutely fabulous riding, cantering across plains filled with wildebeest and zebra, wandering casually up to giraffes and eland, amazing stuff! I was a bit put off by the idea of it being an enclosed reserve (I was thinking Woburn safari park style) but this place was vast, you could ride for hours without going off the reserve and the animals lived as though. Lots of fast riding and jumps too if that's your thing, and option for other horsey activities too (horseball, polo, western tasters) and some off-horse activities too. Plenty of solo travellers so no issue there. Only downside was the ££££. I've done lots of other riding holidays so can have a think about other recs but safari was definitely the most special...

DiDonk · 04/08/2023 19:54

Thequeenofthetypis · 04/08/2023 19:46

Thanks @DiDonk
Not planning to actually bring my own horse, not sure the funds would stretch to that!!! I was thinking more trekking with an organised group.

One of the people who runs my stables is always telling me how nice it is, but we do live about an hour's drive from there, so it's more feasible! The idea of swimming with the horse is pretty cool, even if it's not your own horse.

TBH I'm not nearly good enough to go in the sea barebacked but it's something to look forward to.

Thequeenofthetypis · 04/08/2023 19:55

Thanks @maxelly , give me all your recommendations! I trust Mumsnet more than TripAdvisor 😁
The safari really does sound like the absolute dream. But I might not ever manage to save quite that much....

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Thequeenofthetypis · 04/08/2023 19:57

Missed your suggestions there @CaveMum , also love the Canadian Rockies suggestion. Might be a tad over budget though too, maybe I need to rethink the budget 🤔

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Thequeenofthetypis · 04/08/2023 19:58

Hippos in the lake an added bonus 😄

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EineReiseDurchDieZeit · 04/08/2023 19:59

I hear you can do that sort of thing on ranch stays in Montana

cocksstrideintheevening · 04/08/2023 20:00

Dude ranch

Thequeenofthetypis · 04/08/2023 20:02

Any personal recommendations?

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Charley50 · 04/08/2023 20:05

I don't ride horses but Argentina?

Ovasaurus · 04/08/2023 20:06

Mongolia- these guys are great

Austrianmilk · 04/08/2023 20:08

Try looking up Equestrian Escapes. I've just booked to go to Iceland with them for a riding holiday. I've chosen to go in November but they run them most of the year I think. They also cover other locations both UK and abroad.

eish · 04/08/2023 20:10

I did a three day day horseback trek through mountains in New Zealand (longer options available). A truly wonderful experience!

maxelly · 04/08/2023 20:11

Catalonia or Andalusia are both excellent options if you're thinking more Europe (helps that I'm in love with Spanish horses). I'd consider a based stay, perhaps one where you can take some schoolmaster dressage lessons or try some equitation work as well as hacking out. The advantages of a based ride as opposed to point to point is you have more flexibility to choose how much and what riding you do each day rather than being on a fixed agenda. No matter how riding fit you are you probably will be surprised at how many aches and pains you get after multiple days of 6 hours + in the saddle as many rides have, it's nice just to have the option of a steadier or rest day. Portuguese options on lusitanos are a good choice too.

I've also done great rides in France (expensive), Italy (lovely but uncomfortable), Ireland (wet), Wales (wet), Scotland (wet and midgey) and also Jordan - amazing desert riding but did require plenty of stamina as very, very hot (we rode in the early mornings and evenings but even so) and Arab horses aren't for everyone, I absolutely loved their speed and sensitivity but they are dinky and narrow so take some adjusting too. Next on the agenda is to explore Eastern European options as you seem to get a lot more value for money than in western Europe. I'd highly recommend Catalonia though...

Sexnotgender · 04/08/2023 20:14

I had friend a few years ago who did a riding and cooking holiday in Italy. Sounded amazing!

Mischance · 04/08/2023 20:26
Try this - 2 of my DDs went earlier this year (when the weather was good!) - it was a treat from all the family's accumulated birthday/Christmas moneys. It is not cheap - definitely not free, in spite of their name!

However they had the most fabulous time - like living in a pony book from their childhoods! The arrived at the stables and were allocated their horses, maps, directions, lunchboxes - and off they went. They arrived at their destination stop each evening where a lovely meal awaited them, and stabling for the horses. Their baggage had been delivered there ready. I think they did 3 nights. They absolutely loved it!

Welcome to Freerein Riding Holidays

Offering self-guided, guided & adult learn to ride. 2-7 days, real trail riding holidays, stay inns & guest houses. Self-guided freedom. #horsebackisbetter

Thequeenofthetypis · 04/08/2023 20:26

I've also done great rides in France (expensive), Italy (lovely but uncomfortable), Ireland (wet), Wales (wet), Scotland (wet and midgey) and also Jordan - amazing desert riding but did require plenty of stamina as very, very hot
This is basically a summary of my fears. You spend all that money and then it doesn't live up to expectations 😔

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Mischance · 04/08/2023 20:26

It is in mid Wales by the way.

Thequeenofthetypis · 04/08/2023 20:29

@Sexnotgender cooking = work, not holiday! Maybe when my kids have grown up and moved out I might consider it fun again, but right now, not so much!

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