We have teamed up with the Namibia Horse Safari company to offer you what we consider to be the best way of exploring this extraordinary country, the variety of which truly has to be seen to be believed. Often said, but seldom really true. Namibia is a big country with a small population and in it you will everything from enormous rolling sand dunes, to game parks, stunning canyons, luxurious lodges and delightful towns as it stretches from the Atlantic Ocean through the Namib Desert to the plateau. Once German East Africa, you will find colonial buildings in Windhoek, the capital, and the pretty coastal town of Swakopmund where you can find a host of adventures including shark fishing and whale/dolphin watching.
However, despite all the above you have come to Ranch Rider to discover our horse-riding holidays and we have several exciting routes for you in some of the most remote and dramatic desert terrain to be found in Namibia or perhaps it is not too much of a stretch to say in the world. Due to the terrain, you will need to be a good rider and fit for all the rides: you will cover 20-50 kms a day spending six to eight hours in the saddle and on occasions in rough spots on your feet.
A mixed herd of Arab, Haflingers Trakenhers: fairly small 14.2/16 hands all very used to the desert and due to this, there is a weight limit of 85 kgs fully dressed in riding gear. They are fit as between April and October they do a 10-night safari every six weeks or so. In the off-season they are free to wander at will keeping fit in the bush. Saddles are custom-made in the English style but with modifications for the conditions which include wool and mohair girths, stirrups specifically placed to allow you to stand to ease the horses’ backs at regular intervals plus water panniers. Bridles are usually snaffles or bitless.
Out “on the road”
Most of our guests prefer to sleep out under the canopy of desert stars - a very special experience! If you would rather have a roof over your head, 2-man tents are provided as well as comfortable chairs and camp beds with bedrolls consisting of a canvas bag containing an insulating mattress, duvet and pillow. Accommodation for the first and last night of your holiday will be in Guest farms/ lodges/ guesthouses . These accommodations are simple but comfortable, with twin-bedded rooms, mostly with en-suite facilities.
Sunrise brings fresh coffee, then a hearty breakfast before setting off for a 4-5 hour ride. Lunch breaks are usually one or two hours before a further 2-3 hours riding. Into camp in time for sundowners admiring the stunning sunset before a good dinner prepared on the open fire, usually a ‘braai’ or ‘potjie’ after which you will probably be ready for an early bed.
If you would like to stay in one Nambia’s lodges for some luxury after the rigours of the riding, do please let us know and we will happily recommend. You might consider heading north to Etosha Natiional Park, one of the largest national parks in Africa or the stunning Fish River Canyon, Africa’s largest and second to only the Grand Canyon in the world.
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