Type of horses:
Anglo-Arab, French saddle horses and French horses.
Nature of horses:
Robust, good-natured, calm and confident.
Height of horses:
15 - 16.3hh
100kg / 220lbs
English style saddles. Some horses are ridden bitless in hackamores whilst others have traditional bitted bridles.
This ride takes place in the wonderful Bordeaux region of France and is an exceptional riding experience. Not only will you enjoy the company of great horses but you will explore the most famous wine lands in the world, crossing prestigious vineyards including the Médoc, Côtes de Blaye, Côtes de Bourg, Fronsac, Lalande de Pomerol, St Emilion, l'Entre deux mers, Premières Côtes de Bordeaux, Graves and Sauternes.
In addition to this the ride takes you to some beautiful areas of historical and cultural interest such as the Citadelle de Blaye, built in the 18th century by Vauban, the medieval city of St Emilion, the abbey of the Sauve Majeur and the fortified town of Cadillac dating from the 13th century. The ride organisers are responsible for a number of fascinating horseback tours across France and use their own herd of horses for the different trails, transporting them to the different starting points of the rides. You will always be accompanied by two certified equestrian guides on this great wine lovers' adventure!
You will stay at various hotels and B&Bs during this trip. Price is based around sharing a double or twin room, though single rooms are available for a supplement. Nearly always there are bathrooms joined onto the bedrooms.
Full board is included. Dinners are in a traditional style and wine and coffee is included. Picnic lunches tend to be country meals involving meats and various mixed salads (including appetisers and wine).
Appetisers and extra drinks are not included with dinners.
Languages: French and English.
Health requirements: None specific.
Age limit: None specific. Older children can be accommodated if they are competent, experienced riders, travelling with their parents and capable of riding a large horse (there are no ponies available).
Included: Set time airport transfers, accommodation, meals, drinks with meals and horse riding.
Not included: Flights, travel insurance, transfers outside of the normal times, extra drinks (other than wine tasting), snacks or services.
A set time airport transfer is available from and to Bordeaux airport. Riders meet at Bordeaux airport Hall B information point at 6.30pm or at the train station meeting point at 5.30pm.
This is an exciting trail ride for lovers of French wine. The trail leads you from Listrac in Médoc to Sauternes, passing by fascinating vineyards and many points of historical interest. Plenty of riding and great wine tasting experiences!
Day to Day Programme (sometimes takes place in reverse!)
Day 1: Arrival at Bordeaux airport or train station for the set time transfers. You will be driven to the B&B 'Domaine de Quittignan Brillette' in Moulis en Médoc for your first dinner and overnight.
Day 2: Breakfast is at 8.00am and you will be transferred to the horses at around 9.00am. By 10.00am you will be on horseback, riding through a flat landscape between vineyards and forests. The group will enjoy a picnic on the borders of the Gironde and will go on to taste a Médoc at the wine museum of Maucaillou. You will take your horses across the Gironde by ferry, heading towards Blaye. The journey crossing is around forty minutes. On arrival you will ride to Vauban (18th century citadelle) before visiting a wine producer of Blaye at the castle of Frédignac. Overnight at the Porche hotel.
Day 3: The day starts the same as yesterday and you will be riding by around 10.00am. The ride today leads you through the Côtes de Blaye and Côtes de Bourg region, crossing a hilly landscape. The picnic today is at Chateau Lamotte where a wine producer is based. You will enjoy a tasting of the Côtes de Bourg. At 3.00pm it's time to get back on the horses and ride for Cubnezais over flatter landscapes, travelling through some humid areas where there are no vineyards. The evening tonight is at Gravette's vineyard and you will have a tasting during the meal. Overnight on site.
Day 4: Today you will be on your horse by 9.30am and ready for another day in the saddle and experiencing these delicious wines. The region today alternates between vineyards and small forests and you will follow a route to the castle Mayne Veil. Here you will have a picnic and a tasting of Fronsac wine. Once back on the horse you will make for Libourne, passing through the famous region of Pomerol. You will leave the horses at the castle Belles Graves whilst you go to taste the wine Lalande de Pomerol. The evening is spent at the La Tour hotel in Libourne.
Day 5: You will ride in the direction of Saint Emilion, passing through the famous properties of château Pétrus, Cheval Blanc and château Figeac. You will have a picnic at the castle Robin des Moines with a tasting of the wine, followed by free time to visit the city of St Emilion.
In the afternoon you will leave St Emilion and ride through the large valley of Dordogne, arriving in Saint Jean de Blaignac by 7.00pm. Overnight in a B&B.
Day 6: Breakfast is again at 8.00am with departure on horseback at 9.30am. Now you are in the region of the l'Entre deux mers which features wonderfully varied landscapes with hills, rich woodlands and beautiful wineries. You will stop at the 13th century castle of Rauzan for a tasting of Entre deux Mers. In the afternoon you will ride into the hilly areas between the vineyards and forests. You will reach the castle of Broustaret with its Bed and Breakfast. Dinner tonight is in the city of Cadillac where you will taste the Premières Côtes de Bordeaux. There is a night time visit to the city.
Day 7: Departure is at 9.30am again. There are some high hills to be crossed before you reach and pass through the valley of Garonne, coming to the vineyards of Graves and Sauternes. Today's picnic is at the castle of Myrat - the count of Pontac will show you around the castle before inviting you to taste the golden wine. In the afternoon gallops between the vineyards and woods will take you to Sauternes. You will climb to the top of the tower La Tour Blanche (at the oenological/wine-making school) and can admire the views across the vineyard. During the meal you will taste the wine of Graves before spending your night in the hotel.
Day 8: After breakfast it's time for your transfer back to the airport or train station. There will be one group transfer to Bordeaux.
|Minimum group size:||5|
|Maximum group size:||10|
|Ability description:||Intermediate and above, happy to ride at all paces.|
|Type of ride:||Trail.|
|Total riding time:||6 days riding as per itinerary.|
|Departure dates:||2017: 6 - 13 May (FULL), 13 - 20 May, 30 September - 7 October, 14 - 21 October (FULL).|
2017: Price per person, based on shared room accommodation: £1397
Single supplement £30 per night.
Please note that prices do not include drinks in hotels and restaurants or entrance fees.