Il Paretaio riding holiday in Italy - Far and Ride
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Il Paretaio, Italy





Reviews



Really great time. (Favourite memories?) My husband cantering (new to riding!!) and me doing a half pass which I have never done before. And all the lovely people we met!

Lindsey B.
Excellent. Good accommodation, superb food, good horses and riding. Convivial atmosphere.

James Kay
Really relaxing. Very easy to get to without a car, yet still very remote so you get that 'in the middle of nowhere' feeling. Scenery was also incredible. The food was incredible - I think the highlight for me was the pear, chocolate and ricotta strudel! The horses were perfect for my level and really well cared for. I can't fault it!

Rebecca T.
Truly excellent! Very memorable.

Caroline and Tom
Excellent holiday with riding on lovely, well-schooled and well cared for horses. First class instruction. They catered very well for me being a vegetarian, lovely food. The tack was good and the care of the horses was excellent - the horses came first which is how it should be.

Jenny T
 

Horses



Type of horses:

Lusitano, Anglo-Arab, Berber, Arab, English Thoroughbred, Dutch and Italian sport horses.

Nature of horses:

Well-trained

Height of horses:

14.2 - 17.2

Weight limit:

85kg / 188 lbs

Tack type:

English / Dressage

 

Weather



 

Ride Description

Il Paretaio is a charming country house offering a high standard of riding tuition and excellent hacking opportunities in the beautiful surrounding countryside. Located in a picturesque valley, in the heart of Tuscany, the riding centre is well known for its wonderful location and the professionalism and dedication of its staff to the principles of classical riding. It is home to a range of well-schooled horses, known for their gentle and willing temperaments which are the result of careful training. The guest rooms are warm and inviting, decorated in a traditional Italian style, and guests enjoy four course Tuscan dinners accompanied by quality Chianti wine.

The house and riding club are owned and run by Giovanni and Cristina De Marchi who have devoted their lives to their passion for horses - they have more than 30 years experience in teaching riders from all over the world. They personally train the horses with a focus on suppling techniques, ensuring that the horse can respond to light and sensitive aids with elasticity and expression in their movement. The riding centre is F.I.S.E. affiliated and Giovanni and Cristina are supported by experienced, well-trained instructors. Their aim is to teach with a calm and sensitive approach, leading you through softening exercises to improve your balance and position regardless of your riding level or age (children welcome). They can cater to all levels of rider, from beginners to those wishing to improve their dressage, and those who love to ride amongst delightful scenery will not be disappointed. There are half day and full day rides out into the Tuscan hills, complete with the options of a lunchtime wine tasting or trattoria visit!

Il Paretaio is an excellent base for those who also enjoy exploring. Located half way between Florence and Siena there is plenty of sightseeing available and your hosts are happy to provide tips on how to make the most of your experience. The region of Tuscany has more UNESCO sites than any other part of Italy and there are several places well worth a visit including Siena, Firenze and San Gimignano. Cookery classes are also recommended - you won't want to forget the taste of the delicious meals you have here so it's worth learning how to cook one at home! If you prefer just to ride and relax then you can ride a few hours each day before settling down by the pool to admire the panoramic views of the surrounding hills and fields.

Holly has visited Il Paretaio and enjoyed both their tuition and hacking, so please just get in touch with any questions.

See Programmes.

 

Food & Accommodation

Guests are accommodated in the warm and inviting 18th century country house. There are ten guest rooms, each with their own bathroom, and they are all decorated in the traditional Tuscan way but each with their own style. They are simple but warm and welcoming. Some rooms are big enough for three or four to share so are suitable for families.

The country house or villa has original terracotta flooring, wooden beams, stone walls and traditional arched ceilings. There is a swimming pool which offers wonderful views of the Tuscan hills. Free wifi available.

Tuscany is an area renowned for its excellent cuisine and you will not be disappointed by the food at Il Paretaio! Dinners include four courses which are served with a good Chianti wine. The food is of a traditional Tuscan style, created using fresh local ingredients and their home-produced extra virgin olive oil. Specialities include homemade lasagne and pizza as well as a famous Tuscan soup known as ribollita. Vegetarians can be catered for on request.

All guests eat together at one long dining table in the dining room which features a large fireplace.

Cookery classes are also available at an additional cost.

 

Activities

Non-riders are welcome. We recommend cookery classes and sightseeing in the local area. There is also the possibility of wine tasting, golf, tennis and Italian lessons. Both Florence and Siena are just a 30 minute drive away.

Local places which are nice to visit:

Florence - the capital of the Renaissance and one of the world's most beautiful cities. Your hosts can give you plenty of tips to ensure that you make the most of a trip to Florence.

Siena - this town offers the highest quality of life in Italy and for good reason.

San Gimignano - a very charming place with wonderful towers. Also serves the best ice cream in Tuscany!

Volterra - a magical town from the Etruscan period which has a special reputation for their alabaster crafts.

Chianti area - your hosts can propose nice itineraries for you to help you discover the real beauty of the area (and its famous wine!).

 

Further Details

Languages: English, Italian, French (German available on request)

Health requirements: None specific.

Age limit: 5+ for lessons, 14+ for half day hacks.

Tuition: Yes.

Included: Accommodation, buffet breakfasts, four course dinners with wine and mineral water, riding as per itinerary.

Not included: Flights, airport transfers, travel insurance, lunches, extra drinks and activities, tips and services not mentioned.

 

Travel Information

The riding centre is situated in the heart of Tuscany, 30 minutes car journey from Florence or Siena. We recommend that you fly into Florence - you can hire a car (recommended) or we can arrange your transfer from the airport or train station at an additional cost.

Transfer also available from and to Pisa airport or, for a cheaper option, from and to the nearest station at Poggibonsi - we can happily talk you through the journey. It's also possible to come by bus to San Filippo and we can get you picked up from there.

Transfers from/to Florence station: €75 each way per car
Florence Airport: €85 each way per car
Pisa Airport: €135 each way per car
Poggibonsi train station: €35 each way per car

Transfers costs are to be paid locally in cash please.

Airport: Florence

Alternative Airport: Pisa

 

Programmes


Programme A - Lessons for Beginners



A week stay for beginner riders who are looking for some general riding tuition. The lessons are designed to improve your riding technique and you can either have ten lessons over six riding days or you can swap one of your lessons for a gentle hack into the countryside. Il Paretaio is the ideal place to learn to become a balanced and sensitive rider.

Lessons are often individual or with just two riders. Occasionally there may be a small group riding together but the maximum is never higher than four, to ensure that participants receive a high standard.

NB: Tuition on this programme is really designed for real beginners who are totally new to riding or who perhaps have a maximum of some basic experience at walk and trot. Tuition for more competent or experienced riders is charged at a slightly higher price, so riders who are moved to a higher level group during their stay will need to pay a surcharge. If you are in any doubt as to which programme to book then please do not hesitate to contact us so that we can book you to the right programme from the start. 



Minimum group size: 1
Maximum group size: 4
Ability description: Beginners riders, looking for general tuition (as opposed to dressage).
Type of ride: Based stay with tuition.
Total riding time: Ten riding lessons OR nine lessons and one ride out. Lessons are generally around 50 minutes in the morning and 40 minutes in the afternoon, but please note that lessons in the summer months may be shortened due to the heat to ensure the wellbeing of horses and riders.
Departure dates: 2017: Flexible during the period 25th February - 18th November and 26th December 2017 - 7th January 2018.
 
Pricing: 2017:

LOW SEASON (25 February - 1 April and 4 - 18 November)

Rider: £967 per person
Non-riding adult: £621 per person
Single supplement: £25 per day
Supplement for Tower Room: £8 per day

HIGH SEASON (1 April - 4 November and 26 December - 7 January 2018)

Rider: £1060 per person
Non-riding adult: £714 per person
Single supplement: £25 per day
Supplement for Tower Room: £13

Please contact us for children's prices.

NB: Please note that tuition for intermediate and above riders is more expensive than that on this beginners' programme. Therefore if you book this programme and are upgraded because your riding level is higher than you thought, there will be an extra charge. If you are not sure then please contact us before booking.



Programme B - Dressage & Hacking for Intermediate to Experienced Riders



A week stay combining dressage lessons and half day hacks for the strong intermediate to experienced rider. These lessons are specifically focused around dressage and classical riding so are suitable for those who already have good riding experience both in the menage and out in the countryside. A wonderful chance to improve your riding technique whilst also exploring the beautiful Tuscan countryside.

The dressage lessons range between 40 - 50 minutes in duration and the half day hacks are between 2 and 4 hours, depending on the riding level of participants, the chosen route and the weather. The rides out are at a calm pace, primarily walk and trot, but are designed to help you appreciate the landscapes of this charming region.



Minimum group size: 1
Maximum group size: 4
Ability description: Intermediate - Experienced. Riders should have established the basics of flatwork in order to benefit from the dressage lessons. You also need to have experience of riding in open country.
Type of ride: Based stay with tuition and half day hacks.
Total riding time: Six riding days combining six dressage lessons with three half day hacks. Lessons are generally around 50 minutes in the morning and 40 minutes in the afternoon (individual lessons are usually 45 minutes), but please note that lessons in the summer months may be shortened due to the heat to ensure the wellbeing of horses and riders. It's also possible that two lessons can be run in the morning if the afternoon is expected to be especially hot. Half day hacks are approximately between 2 and 4 hours in duration.
Departure dates: 2017: Flexible dates during the period 25th February - 18th November and 26th December 2017 - 7th January 2018.
 
Pricing: The following prices are for 7 nights half board accommodation (breakfast and 4 course dinner with wine), based on sharing double or twin room, and 6 riding days.

2017:

LOW SEASON (25 February - 1 April and 4 - 18 November)

Rider: £1029 per person
Non-riding adult: £621 per person
Single supplement: £25 per day
Supplement for Tower Room: £8 per day

HIGH SEASON (1 April - 4 November and 26 December - 7 January 2018)

Rider: £1118 per person
Non-riding adult: £714 per person
Single supplement: £25 per day
Supplement for Tower Room: £13

Please contact us for children's prices.



Programme C - Riding Out for Intermediate to Experienced Riders



A week stay with five half day hacks into the Tuscan countryside. This programme is suitable for riders who have good experience of riding in the open and who would like to explore the beauty of Il Paretaio's surroundings. You will ride between two and four hours each riding day.

The rides out are at a calm pace, primarily walk and trot, but are designed to help you appreciate the landscapes of this charming region.



Minimum group size: 1
Maximum group size: 4
Ability description: Intermediate riders and above who have hacking experience. Riders must be 14+.
Type of ride: Based stay with hacking.
Total riding time: Five half day rides.
Departure dates: 2017: flexible during the period 25th February - 18th November and 26th December 2017 - 7th January 2018.
 
Pricing: The following prices are for 7 nights half board accommodation (breakfast and 4 course dinner with wine), based on sharing double or twin room, and 5 half riding days.

2017:

LOW SEASON (25 February - 1 April and 4 - 18 November)

Rider: £865 per person
Non-riding adult: £621 per person
Single supplement: £25 per day
Supplement for Tower Room: £8 per day

HIGH SEASON (1 April - 4 November and 26 December - 7 January 2018)

Rider: £958 per person
Non-riding adult: £714 per person
Single supplement: £25 per day
Supplement for Tower Room: £13



Programme D - Dressage for Intermediate to Experienced Riders



This week stay is specifically focused around dressage tuition and includes nine dressage lessons and one ride out. It is suited to intermediate or experienced riders who have established a good standard of riding in the menage and are looking to improve their skills in dressage and classical riding. The one ride out is a lovely opportunity for a break and to experience your charming surroundings.

The dressage lessons range between 40 - 50 minutes in duration and the half day hack is between 2 and 4 hours, depending on the riding level of participants, the chosen route and the weather. The rides out are at a calm pace, primarily walk and trot, but are designed to help you appreciate the landscapes of this charming region.



Minimum group size: 1
Maximum group size: 4
Ability description: Intermediate to experienced riders who have established the basics of flatwork in order to benefit from the dressage lessons. You also need to have experience of riding in open country.
Type of ride: Based stay with tuition and one ride out.
Total riding time: Six riding days including nine dressage lessons and one hack. Lessons are generally around 50 minutes in the morning and 40 minutes in the afternoon (individual lessons are usually 45 minutes), but please note that lessons in the summer months may be shortened due to the heat to ensure the wellbeing of horses and riders. It's also possible that two lessons can be run in the morning if the afternoon is expected to be especially hot.
Departure dates: 2017: flexible during the period 25th February - 18th November and 26th December 2017 - 7th January 2018.
 
Pricing: The following prices are for 7 nights half board accommodation (breakfast and 4 course dinner with wine), based on sharing double or twin room, and 6 riding days.

2017:

LOW SEASON (25 February - 1 April and 4 - 18 November)

Rider: £1056 per person
Non-riding adult: £621 per person
Single supplement: £25 per day
Supplement for Tower Room: £8 per day

HIGH SEASON (1 April - 4 November and 26 December - 7 January 2018)

Rider: £1149 per person
Non-riding adult: £714 per person
Single supplement: £25 per day
Supplement for Tower Room: £13



Children's Riding Programme



This week riding programme is suitable for children and incorporates ten riding lessons over the week stay. Children between the ages of five and nine will receive basic riding tuition whilst older children from ten to fourteen can be trained in dressage (depending on their previous riding experience). Children up to nine receive lessons of 30 minutes in duration whilst the older children will have 40 minute lessons if shared or 30 minutes if they are being taught individually (also 30 minutes if a lunge lesson). 

Il Paretaio has more than twenty years experience of teaching children to ride and they have a selection of well-trained ponies and small horses which are very suitable for them. During the week they can organise lessons, small competitions and games and kids love the setting with the horses, dogs and cats. More experienced children often visit to prepare for riding club tests and achieve very high results.



Minimum group size: 1
Maximum group size: 4
Ability description: All levels welcome.
Type of ride: Based stay with tuition.
Total riding time: Ten riding lessons over six riding days. Please note that lessons in the summer months may be shortened due to the heat to ensure the wellbeing of horses and riders. It's also possible that two lessons can be run in the morning if the afternoon is expected to be especially hot.
Departure dates: 2017: flexible during the period 25th February - 18th November and 26th December 2017 - 7th January 2018.
 
Pricing: The following prices are for 7 nights half board accommodation (breakfast and dinner), based on child sharing a room with 1 or 2 adults. You will see

2017:

Half Board Only (no riding):

Child 5 - 8 years old sharing room with 2 adults: £358
Child 5 - 8 years old sharing room with 1 adult: £607
Child 9 - 13 years old sharing room with 2 adults: £500
Child 9 - 13 years old sharing room with 1 adult: £714
Children 0 - 4 years old free of charge if sharing room with 2 adults.

Half Board + 10 Lessons:

Child 5 - 8 years old sharing room with 2 adults: £668
Child 5 - 8 years old sharing room with 1 adult: £917
Child 9 - 13 years old sharing room with 2 adults: £811
Child 9 - 13 years old sharing room with 1 adult: £1025
Children 0 - 4 years old free of charge if sharing room with 2 adults.

From 14 years and above, guests pay adult prices. The lessons for children last approximately 40 minutes if they are able to steer or 30 minutes if a lunge lesson.

The half day hacks are not available for children under 14 but confident, younger riders may take a one hour ride at additional cost.