Kerewong State Forest, NSW riding holiday in Australia - Far and Ride
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Kerewong State Forest, NSW, Australia





Horses



Typeofhorses:

Mainly purebred Arabian, but one Arab x Thoroughbred

Natureofhorses:

Well schooled, forward going, spirited, responsive.

Heightofhorses:

14.1 - 15hh although there is one 15.3hh and one 16.2hh

Weightlimit:

80kg. Advanced riders up to 85kg may be accepted.

Tacktype:

Australian made Endurance saddles, either leather or synthetic, with endurance breastplates. Bridles comprise simple snaffle bits, hackamores or bitless Natural Horsemanship halters. Each saddle comes with a small saddle bag for your water bottle.


Weather




RideDescription

The North Coast Hinterland of New South Wales (NSW) provides fantastic terrain for horse riders - a mixture of hilly eucalyptus forests, gently undulating farmland, forested mountain climbs, rocky escarpments, creek crossings and hidden riding trails with pockets of rainforest. You can also discover one of the fantastic beaches of the Port Macquarie region on horseback.

Kerewong State Forest is located in the beautiful Lorne Valley and your home for the week is the 60-acre farm belonging to your host and guide. The farm has access to trails crossing 50,000 acres of seemingly endless and remote NSW State Forest and Australian National Parks.

A highlight of the ride is the chance to ride high-quality Arabian horses. These intelligent, willing, energetic and sensitive horses are a delight for competent riders who will relish the opportunity to canter on endless forest trails and gallop down long, sandy beaches. All of the horses have been trained for long distance and endurance riding, with them all having completed 40km endurance rides as part of their training. The horses live out together as a herd and are in excellent condition.

Your guide, Kathy, moved to Australia from the Netherlands in 2000 and set up her equestrian trails business in 2004. In the Netherlands, she competed in Dressage up to Advanced level, show jumping and eventing, later obtaining her Dutch horse driving qualifications too. She now regularly competes in local endurance rides on the horses she uses on these trails. Kathy prepares all your meals as well as guiding you on your adventure, so this is a truly personal experience.

There is the option of both a centre-based or a progressive trail ride. Both options are for competent riders only with long active walks, trots, canters and fast galloping sections of up to 4kms at a time and both include the same beach ride. The stationary programme offers more opportunities for fast gallops than the progressive ride because you mainly follow forest trails whereas on the progressive ride you venture into small farming communities and follow some rural roads which require a slower pace. The same dates are offered for both itineraries and the first two people to book each date will decide the particular itinerary. The stationary option can be confirmed for one person on payment of a supplement.

Rides are offered all year round and in general, the weather is usually fantastic. On the hottest summer days (Jan/Feb) you will ride earlier and later so you can relax during the heat of the day. These months are also most likely to yield rain due to the sub-tropical climate. Winter months (June-August) are usually dry and sunny with cold nights, whilst spring and autumn can bring a variety of different weathers.

This is a ride for true riders who want to experience the authentic, rural Australia on fit and forward going horses - an ideal rustic thrill to fit into a longer Australian itinerary.

See Programmes.


Food&Accommodation

On the centre based ride you stay at Kerewong Lodge, which is a separate guest wing of the main farmhouse. It is typically Australian, clean and comfortable but not luxurious. It contains 2 single rooms and 1 double/twin room. There is also a separate studio/cabin with a queen and a single bed, suitable for double or twin occupancy. All rooms have their own bathroom with toilet and shower, except for one single room, so if there are four solo riders then the two singles will share one bathroom. Maximum occupancy is 6/7 people but only 4 riders.

There is a centrally located guest living/dining area and each room has an external door leading to its own decking space.

On the trails you visit other accommodation in the area - see individual itineraries for details.

Meals are fresh and home-cooked.

Breakfast is buffet-style with toast, condiments, cereals, yoghurt, fruit and eggs.
Lunch is usually light and picnic style, either from your saddlebag or brought by the support vehicle.
Dinners are taken at the dining table in the communal area and are comprised of two courses. Meals will include Australian and International specialities such as beef stew, pasta, chicken, fish, roast dinner or barbecue.

Vegetarians and other special diets can be catered for with advance notice.

Juice, soft drinks, filtered rainwater, tea and coffee are available freely on a self-serve basis. Wine is served with dinner. Beer and additional wine is available at extra cost (payable locally).


Activities

Horse-riding is the priority here and most days are filled with riding. After the rides, there is some leisure time where you can relax by the pool, read a book, snooze or take a walk. There are some opportunities for viewing local wildlife and birds.

Time permitting you could visit the Lorne Valley Macadamia Farm and Cafe, a local winery or the Koala Hospital and historic Roto House.

Whale watching boats operate in Port Macquarie from May to November.

Non-riders can be accommodated on the stationary programme but would be advised to hire a car to explore the area.


FurtherDetails

Languages: English, German, Dutch

Health requirements: General good health and riding fitness

Age limit: 15 years and older

Tuition: No

Included: Accommodation, all meals (except lunch on one day), soft drinks and wine with dinner, transfers at set times

Not included: Flights, insurance, additional drinks such as beer, lunch on one day


Travel Information

The nearest airport is Port Macquarie domestic airport, which is a 1-hour flight from Sydney or 1,5-hour flight from Brisbane.

Alternatively, you can arrive by bus or train into Port Macquarie or Kendall. There is no public transport past Kendall and so you will require a transfer or hire your own car.

Transfers are included at a set time as follows:
Arrival:
Port Macquarie airport/bus station/hotel: 5:15-5:30pm
Kendall train station: 6:15pm (to coincide with Sydney train; Brisbane trains on request).

Departure:
Port Macquarie airport: to meet 11am flight
Kendall train station: to meet 9am train to Sydney

Airport: Port Macquarie


Programmes


Kerewong Country and Coast



Discover the beautiful Kerewong State Forest on forward-going and fit endurance-trained Arabian horses. There are plenty of opportunities for fast riding on the forest trails as well as one day galloping along the beach. Return to your comfortable and authentic accommodation each night to truly relax.

Day One:

You will arrive at Kerewong Lodge in the late afternoon after your transfer from Port Macquarie or Kendall. Over dinner with your guide and fellow riders you can discuss the programme for the week ahead.

Day Two:

Your introductory ride takes you through the hilly terrain of Kerewong State Forest with tall eucalyptus trees and pockets of rainforest. Stop at a creek-side picnic ground in the middle of the forest for lunch. You may spot some of the local wildlife such as wallabies, "goannas" and many birds like the Black Cockatoo. Return to the farm for dinner.

Riding: c. 3 hours

Day Three:

Ride to the impressive Comboyne Mountain (670m), whose peak can be seen from the lodge. There are magnificent 360-degree views from the top. Enjoy your lunch at the peak and then descend back to the farm for dinner and overnight.

Riding: c. 5 hours

Day Four:

Today is a longer ride which starts along a historic timber railway line to the local Bago vineyards. There are creek crossings, adventurous steep descents and fantastic long gallops along the way. On arrival, you can taste the local produce whilst you look out over the vines. Transfer by road back to the lodge.

Riding: c. 5-6 hours

Day Five:

Today is your opportunity to experience the beach with a fantastic ride galloping alongside the Pacific Ocean. Watch out for dolphins in the waves or a close encounter with kangaroos. Stop for lunch at a restaurant or cafe in the dunes (payable locally) where you can opt for fish and chips from the local fisherman's coop or something from the local Macadamia Farm Cafe. Transfer back to the lodge in the horse trailer.

Riding: c. 2 hours

Day Six:

A farmland ride takes you to the beautiful green, rolling farmland of the Comboyne Plateau. On clear days you can see the Pacific Ocean. On return to the lodge, you are treated to a farewell dinner.

Riding: c. 6 hours

Day Seven:

Depart after breakfast.

Please note that the itinerary is subject to forestry activities and weather/terrain conditions but always with your best interests at heart.



Accommodation: All nights are at Kerewong Lodge in single or twin/double rooms. If the lodge is full then the two single rooms have to share a bathroom.
Minimum group size: 2
Maximum group size: 4
Ability description: Strong intermediate and competent riders only. The riding can be intense with some long and fast sections of galloping. You need to be riding fit and capable of riding forward going endurance horses.
Type of ride: Centre based trails
Total riding time: 6 nights / 5 days riding
Departure dates: 2017: 26 November-2 December (confirmed); 10-16 December (confirmed).

2018: 7-13, 21-27 January; 4-10 February; 23 Feb-1 March (FULL); 8-14, 22-28 March; 29 March-4 April; 8-14 April (FULL); 22-28 April; 6-12, 20-26 May; 6-13, 21-27 June; 8-14, 22-28 July; 5-11, 19-25 August; 2-8, 16-22 September; 1-7, 15-21 October; 1-7, 15-21 November; 29 Nov-5 Dec; 14-20 December.
Pricing: 2017/18:

2145 AUD$ per person sharing
No single supplement, but may have to share bathroom depending on group size

Supplement to confirm for one rider: 440 AUD$

Includes 6 nights accommodation at Kerewong Lodge, five days of riding, all meals except for lunch on the beach ride day.



Comboyne Plateau Trail



Take a trail through the Kerewong state forest and farmland of Hannam Vale Valley and onto the Comboyne Plateau, riding forward going and fit Arabian horses. A beach ride is also included on one day.

Day One:

You arrive at Kerewong Lodge in the late afternoon after transferring from Port Macquarie or Kendall. Over dinner with your guide and fellow riders you can discuss the itinerary for the week.

Day Two:

Your introductory ride takes you through the hilly terrain of Kerewong State Forest with tall eucalyptus and pockets of rainforest. Stop at a creek-side picnic ground in the middle of the forest for lunch before returning to the lodge in the afternoon. You may spot some local wildlife such as wallabies, "goannas" or Black Cockatoos.

Riding: c. 3 hours

Day Three:

Set off on your trail ride through forest and dairy farmland to the picturesque, lush, green Hannam Vale Valley where you can stop for lunch and good coffee in the garden of the quirky Hannam Vale General Store (built in 1914). In the afternoon, ride through private farm properties and eucalyptus plantations to your accommodation for the night - a luxury farm property in Hannam Vale.

Riding: c. 5 hours

Day Four:

After a hearty cooked breakfast, you ride to the Comboyne Plateau. On the way, you can stop at Flat Rock Lookout for breathtaking views of the valley. Canter along an escarpment into the beautiful, remote forest until the forest opens out into the green pasture fields of the Comboyne Plateau. There are fabulous views of the escarpment and rocky outcrops. Your accommodation for the night is the Roundhouse at Comboyne Hideaway - a unique cabin retreat situated on the magnificent plateau with views of the coastline. There is an outdoor hot tub on the verandah for relaxing those aching muscles.

Riding: c. 6 hours

Day Five:

Ride your complete circuit back to Kerewong Lodge, starting by riding through the green, rolling and fertile farmland of the plateau and then continuing through expanding eucalyptus forests. Stop for lunch on top of the impressive Comboyne Mountain (670m), whose peak can be seen from the Kerewong lodge. Enjoy the 360-degree views before descending and riding home.

Riding: 4-5 hours

Day Six:

Head to the beach for a fantastic morning of galloping alongside the Pacific Ocean. Look out for dolphins in the waves or a close encounter with kangaroos. Lunch can be taken at a restaurant or cafe in the dunes (payable locally) where you can choose from fish and chips from the local fisherman's coop or the local Macadamia Farm Cafe. Return to the farm in the horse trailer for a farewell dinner.

Riding: c. 2 hours

Day Seven:

Depart after breakfast.

Please note that the itinerary can vary depending on forestry activities or local weather/terrain conditions but always with your best interests at heart.



Accommodation: Four nights at Kerewong Lodge and two nights out on the trail.
Minimum group size: 2
Maximum group size: 4
Ability description: You need to be at least a strong intermediate or competent rider, capable of riding a fit, endurance-trained horse across open country. There are plenty of opportunities for long canters and gallops so riding fitness is also important. There are some slower sections on remote roads to get the different accommodations.
Type of ride: Trail
Total riding time: 6 nights / 5 days riding
Departure dates: 2018: 7-13, 21-27 January; 4-10 February; 23 Feb-1 March (FULL); 8-14, 22-28 March; 29 March-4 April; 8-14 April (FULL); 22-28 April; 6-12, 20-26 May; 6-13, 21-27 June; 8-14, 22-28 July; 5-11, 19-25 August; 2-8, 16-22 September; 1-7, 15-21 October; 1-7, 15-21 November; 29 Nov-5 Dec; 14-20 December.
Pricing: 2018:

2442 AUD$ per person sharing
150 AUD$ single supplement

Possible one-day extension adding Winery Day Ride: 400 AUD$ per person (min 2 pax), please enquire.

Includes four nights at Kerewong Lodge, two nights on the trail, five days of riding and all meals, except lunch on beach ride day.