A riding trip makes a wonderful family holiday and whether you are looking to ride all day or for a combination of action, variety and flexibility, we can arrange your perfect trip.
Staying in one place or riding place-to-place..? A one-base stay is often the answer for a mixed family group as riding hours can be tailored to suit and other activities organised for less keen, or less able, riders - but several of the ‘place to place’ rides we offer can also work extremely well. To decide which type of ride will work best for you, think carefully how much riding your childen will really want to do. Will they be keen to ride long hours every day - or is it best to include an option not to ride and do other things, or to just ride for a short time, on some days? Do they love being with horses full stop - or does interest vary? Although our own children (all boys) love riding, they most enjoy short sharp bursts of speed with friends, watching game, monoeuvring obstacles on reliable, fun and easy-going horses and are not so keen on long, slow hours, however stunning the scenery. Spectacular views just don't hold their attention, or provide the refreshing escapism they do for adults. Once you've thought this through, let's have a conversation or send an email and we'll run through your 'wish list' and guide you with ideas.
Age limits There is no ‘across the board’ minimum age to join our riding trips. Age restrictions vary with destination and always depend on the individual and important factors such as size, stamina and riding ability, as well as group numbers. Ride organisers are sometimes restricted by insurance cover (those offering rides in areas with 'big' game, may be limited by a minimum age imposed by insurers), but also according to the horses available. Many do not have children's ponies and all guests therefore need to be comfortable riding a horse over about 14.2hh. From your side, as well as riding ability, it is important to consider aspects such as travel and transfer times as well as the social side in deciding if a particular trip will suit your children. Remember too, that if you plan to join a standard ride on which there will be other guests, there will be less overall flexibility than on a ride that is private or tailor-made for your own group.
Private rides Many of our set itineraries can be adjusted for groups and we’re always happy to custom-make family itineraries on request, perhaps cutting riding hours, tailoring travel, making special meal arrangements or providing babysitters or additional guides for children if necessary. In fact almost all of our rides, can be adapted to suit a private family group so if you have somewhere in mind, don't hesitate to ask.
We can also organize itineraries to combine riding with other activities - cycling, fishing, kayaking or time to enjoy the beach. Or why not add a little to the educational aspect, with a short city visit or a few days sightseeing before or after your riding holiday? All of these can make a marvellous addition.
There really are lots of possibilities so take the plunge, link up with friends and book an action packed week of family fun. Or let us design the perfect trip to celebrate your special occasion and make memories that will last forever!
Top Family Holiday Ideas
Looking for inspiration for a family holiday? Here are some of our favourites:
Italy, Santa Cristina, Tuscany:
We love Santa Cristina for mixed family groups. Dates can be organised to suit and its relaxed, friendly and informal. You can ride, swim, cycle, play tennis or golf, enjoy a burst of culture (or a spot of shopping) in Orvieto & Sorano, try water sports at Lake Bolsena, then wind down over pizza cooked in wood-fired ovens as only the Italians know how. Quality family time. With a choice of accommodation in individual cottages, apartments and en-suite rooms, there's enough flexibility to dip in and out and keep your own space too. Perfect for multi generational family gatherings! 3 to 8 nights and tailored programmes on request. Riders & non-riders all welcome. Please get in touch for example itineraries.
South Africa, Horizon Adventures & The Ants Lodges:
South Africa is a top spot for family travel and the additional excitement of seeing game always adds something extra special to a riding holiday, particularly for children. These 'bush home' lodges in South Africa are THE experts when it comes to families. Hidden on the Waterberg plateau, a UNESCO biosphere reserve often called South Africa’s ‘best kept secret’, they are an easy drive from Johannesburg (itself a direct, overnight flight from London) in an area that is malaria free. Completely flexible in arrival and departure dates, you can visit for anything from 3 to 10 nights or more, making them a holiday destination in their own right or somewhere to include in a longer trip to South Africa. Riders & non-riders are very welcome, there's a choice of activities, a choice of accommodation, a choice of horses, a choice of food and a choice of virtually everything else! Flexibility, fun and the art of bending-over-backwards are the key to their success. Definitely hard to beat. Ask us for example itineraries
Kenya, Sosian & Borana lodges:
Equally expert in 'family' are Sosian and Borana Lodges in Kenya, our No 1 'bush and beach' destination. Like our other family favourites, Sosian and Borana are privately owned and are all about flexibility, providing fun, adventure and R&R for all - and with their highly personal service they always get the measure just right. Rounding off a safari with a few days on the coast, where the active can swim, snorkel, waterski, fish, paddle-board, kayak and others in need of a rest, can sit back, watch and enjoy peace and quiet, is the way to a totally magical family holiday.
Wyoming, USA, The Bitterroot Ranch:
A family ranch stay in the USA is high on many wish lists and for us The Bitterroot in Wyoming is a really good choice. Hidden at the head of a remote valley in the Absaroka Mountains, it adjoins miles of untouched National Forest. Flower scattered meadows under Wyoming's big sky; the gushing Wind River, snow capped peaks on every horizon. Learn to fish, sort cattle or head off with pack horses to camp in the hills. Watch a hundred happy horses canter home at night, walk the llamas, square dance or visit the rodeo in town. Staying in cozy log cabins, its back-to-basics family fun away from the intrusion of screens and machines. 7 nights full board from $2915 US per adult / $2185 US per child (under 16)
Argentina, Estancia Los Potreros
A South American holiday along the same sort of lines as our safari lodges in Africa - a comfortable, private property that is family with flexible, attentive and highly personal service at its heart. This time, the emphasis is on all the wonderful things that make the Argentine gaucho culture so special. There's a string of lovely horses for exploring, the chance to join gauchos working cattle, rounding up horses, learning to lasso. You can play polo, swim in the pool, waterfalls and rivers, try a cooking lesson, enjoy wine tasting and gather for delicious dinners made from home grown, organic fare. Los Potreros is also available to block book privately for a group of just 6 making it the perfect option for family celebration.
And there are plenty holiday ideas to choose from. For a place-to-place riding adventure with an Italian family friendly welcome, ask about Sicily; Romania offers the easy freedom, open spaces and charm of a bygone age and our village-to-village rides in France's Lot & Gironde & Basque Pyrenees, as well as the Sierra Nevada in Spain, all make a super family adventure.
For long haul adrenalin-fuelled fun, we love Argentina's Estancia La Rosita and Estancia Los Potreros, which can both be privately booked for groups of just 8. Our 5* favourites for a holiday your family will not forget, are Botswana's top-of-the-range combination of riding, game & luxury tented camps and Kenya's 'bush and beach' - Sosian & Borana Lodges with perhaps a few days after on the coast.
Ideas are too numerous to list but if you'd like a holiday where you won't be left sitting around wondering where to go or what to do next, where you won't be juggling children's opposing ideas of the best way to spend the day but where you'll do something, see something, learn something but above all enjoy something together, we can certainly help
Do something together and make magical family memories!
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