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Holiday Report: Petra Trails, Jordan

November 18th, 2011

Petra Trails, Jordan, 2011

Sarah Ritchie, Far and Ride.

From 3rd – 12th November 2011, Sarah from Far and Ride escorted a ten day Petra to Wadi Rum tour in Jordan. The tour consisted of three nights in hotels, five nights camping and one night in a permanent desert camp. There were six days of riding, a visit to Petra and a visit to the Dead Sea. Tailor made programmes can be designed for groups wishing to spend longer exploring Jordan.

Below is Sarah’s report on the week…

“I arranged to meet Far and Ride clients Karl, Ann and Emma at Heathrow Airport before our departure so after a brief coffee we headed to our boarding gate and we were off. The flight to Amman took approximately five hours and as soon as we arrived we were met by an Airport Representative who was there to assist us in obtaining our visas. This proved to be a very fast and easy process followed by a driver waiting for us as soon as we had collected our baggage. I do recommend having Jordanian Dinars to hand though as the ATM in arrivals was empty. We waited a very short time for another rider to arrive on a flight from Paris before setting off to our hotel in Amman for the evening. We were all handed our welcome packs containing information on Petra and Wadi Rum along with our weekly programme detailing each day.
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Holiday Report: Brecon Beacons and Beyond, Wales

October 31st, 2011

Holly (right) and Emelie the guide.Brecon Beacons and Beyond, 2011.

Holly Anthony, Far and Ride.

Holly recently went on a long riding weekend in Wales, accompanied by several clients, in the beauty of the Brecon Beacons in Wales. Wales is known for offering interesting riding terrain and has become famous for pony trekking, though what you will find at Far and Ride’s Welsh destination are not ploddy ponies but forward-going Welsh cobs, many of whom are home-bred. The farm offers day rides, week stays (riding out from the farmhouse each day) or a point to point trail covering almost the length and breadth of Wales. Novice to experienced riders can be accommodated here and the herd of horses is an absolute delight to see as they roam the fields.

A weekend riding holiday here is a great option for those who don’t have the time or budget to travel too far but who still want to enjoy some adventurous riding amidst stunning scenery. Wales isn’t famed for its great weather but Holly’s group experienced a beautiful Saturday and Sunday (Holly wore just a t-shirt on the Sunday which is fair enough for mid October!) and just a bit of rain on the Monday afternoon. They ride whatever the weather so provided you take a raincoat and a sense of adventure then it won’t dampen your enthusiasm for the experience.
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Holiday Report: Provence, France

October 13th, 2011

Sue and EsperanzeProvence, France, 2011.

Sue Maling.

On 25th September 2011, Sue Maling and her husband Jon joined the Trail in the Camargue from our riding destination in Provence, France. This is a six night trail that takes you from the Provençal mountains of the Luberon, across Van Gogh’s hills “Les Alpilles”, and to the Mediterranean Sea. The trail will take you to the famous Camargue, the land of flamingoes, black bulls and white horses.

Thanks to Sue and Jon for sharing their thoughts and photos with us. Below is Sue’s report on the trail:

“Fresh back from Provence it’s hard to get back to the British way of life again, I’d just relaxed into French speed. We arrived in France to a heatwave of 28-30C which lasted the week and sunbathing on the 1st of October whilst waiting for the flight home helped take the edge off having to leave. Marseille is actually nowhere near as flat as I thought, the town is surrounded by hills, and we headed into the Luberon range to Didier’s farm. It’s not a long journey, just over an hour, but you go from the fast toll roads to tiny winding roads near the farm and it seemed so remote. We settled into our rooms in the woods and chatted by the horses’ fields before dinner, trying to guess who we would ride. I joked that I love black geldings and would likely get a grey mare as I have done on several rides….and I did!
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Holiday Report: Cefalu Trail, Sicily

October 6th, 2011

The riding groupCefalu Trail, Sicily, 2011.

Sarah Ritchie, Far and Ride.

From the 3rd – 11th September 2011, Sarah from Far and Ride escorted the Cefalu Trail in Sicily. This is a fabulous scenic trail which takes you through four Sicilian Parks: the Madonie, Nebrodi, Etna and Alcantara. Below are Sarah’s thoughts on the trip:

“Upon arrival at the airport I was greeted by our host for the week, Giuseppe, before meeting the clients who were booked onto the ride. Unfortunately, two of the clients had problems with lost luggage so we had to spend some time at the airport in the hope their bags would turn up (after three days they eventually did appear!). Giuseppe had hired a minibus to drive us all to our first overnight stop, the fabulous Santa Anastasia, situated just outside the town of Cefalu. We made a brief stop in Palermo so that we could try some delicious ice cream in sweet bread, a traditional treat that Sicily is famed for. I would definitely recommend to anyone visiting Sicily to spend a day or two in Palermo as the city is rich in history, culture and architecture. One thing to watch out for though are the poor driving skills of the locals!
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Holiday Report: Great South Ranch, Morocco

September 30th, 2011

Holly on TamazirtGreat South Ranch, Morocco, 2011.

Holly Anthony, Far and Ride.

From 17th – 24th September 2011, Holly from Far and Ride joined five lovely ladies for a special week programme to Far and Ride’s Moroccan ranch. The week consisted of seven nights and six days of riding – three days of riding out from the ranch and a three-day trail ride through the mountains with two nights of camping. The programme also included extras such as dinner on the beach one night, Moroccan music performed by the staff, a spot of shopping in the local towns and some massages. Tailor made programmes like this can be designed for groups.

Below is Holly’s report on the week… it’s rather lengthy but there were too many good details to miss out! Many thanks to Holly (the other Holly!), Sonya, Katy, Liz and Jenny for joining the trip and to Maria for her great company and stories.
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Holiday Report: Ranch Hotel, Turkey

August 19th, 2011

Jess riding barebackRanch Hotel, Turkey, 2011, Jess Rogers.

On arrival at the airport we knew we were in for an extreme week, having stepped off the plane into 40+ degree heat! Having found our transfer (after a short delay) we were on our way to the ranch and reached our final destination in just over an hour, having admired the sea view and stunning coastal roads along the way. First impressions of the ranch were lovely; its location is nestled in the mountains beside the twin peak rocks and is so peaceful (apart from the occasional neighing horse!).

On reaching the hotel we were welcomed warmly and shown to our room with complementary cocktails and fruits, which were very welcome after the long journey from England. The rooms are simply furnished but very clean and – most importantly – have an excellent air conditioning system which offers relief from the baking sun. The facilities at the ranch were very good, with a lovely pool, which even in high summer wasn’t crowded, and everything you could wish for is provided. Equally the food is very good, with the chance to sample some Turkish dishes and you certainly won’t go hungry with five different courses!
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Holiday Report: Bosko’s Ranch and Croatian Culture, Croatia

July 6th, 2011

Sue on MiaKrka Trail, Bosko’s Ranch and Croatian Culture, Croatia, 2011.

Sue Maling.

In June 2011, Sue Maling and her husband, Jon, rode the Krka Trail at Bosko’s Ranch in Croatia. Sue kindly offered to share her thoughts on the ride and here’s what she had to say about their Croatian adventure:

“The first day of the holiday was a real disaster, I’d had a puncture so we had to swap cars to get to the airport. The airport parking service was as slow as the ‘Speedy’ boarding and check in so even with running to the gate we still missed our very early morning flight to Split from Stansted. We managed to book an alternative from Gatwick so rang the ranch to tell them the new times and apologise – Dijana (Bosko’s wife) was already on her way to the airport but nothing was too much trouble and she was more than happy to pick us up later… much later! We eventually arrived at the ranch gone almost 11pm and I thought that dinner would be out of the question. How wrong can you be? This is Eastern Europe and eating is REALLY important and hey, 11pm is no time. There was a large group all singing along to a guitar, having just spent the weekend there at the ranch. We had an amazing meal, the most tender beef I have ever tasted – I never eat beef in the UK as it’s just too tough for me. Very nice with some very smooth, home-produced red wine.
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Holiday Report: Algarve Beach and Forest, Portugal

June 27th, 2011

Sarah on TrovaoWest Coast Ride, Algarve Beach and Forest, Portugal, 2011.

Sarah Ritchie, Far and Ride.

In April 2011, I escorted the Four Day West Coast Ride in the Algarve, a destination I spent four months working at last summer. After spending a fantastic summer there last year and realising it was a wonderful destination for plenty of riding in unspoiled landscapes, I was delighted to be able to escort a trip there. I took five clients along, one of whom had been to this destination before but for a based stay rather than a trail ride. The quinta is owned and run by Jinny Harman, an experienced English horsewoman, and the trail was led by two experienced guides, Nat and Joel. Despite having spent time there, I had not experienced the wonderful scenery the West Coast had to offer and I certainly wasn’t disappointed. We were very lucky with the weather as the forecast was not at all good whilst we were there. We somehow managed to get away with most of the rain and stormy weather being overnight, leaving mostly sunny days with the odd shower and cloudy moments.
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Holiday Report: Kupres Farm, February 2011, Bosnia and Herzegovina

April 15th, 2011

Far and Ride LadiesKupres Farm, Bosnia and Herzegovina, 2011.

Holly Anthony and Sarah Ritchie, Far and Ride.

“Just enjoy!”

In February 2011, Holly and Sarah from Far and Ride took three clients to Kupres in Bosnia & Herzegovina for a week of horse riding and skiing. This is the ultimate budget holiday and although they don’t have the facilities and equipment of many of our destinations, Mate, Marko and their team certainly weren’t lacking in hospitality or fantastic riding countryside. A week of horse riding and skiing costs approximately £550 per person for full board accommodation, airport transfers and all activities. Pure riding holidays here are available from less than £400 per person, value for money that you won’t find anywhere else. Here’s what the Far and Ride girls had to say about their Bosnian adventure…

Holly:

“When Far and Ride first received an email from Mate in 2010, he wrote “my English is not so good, but my offer is fantastic!”. In fact, his offer was so good that at first we thought he must have made a mistake. As we learnt more about these riding packages, it became clear to us that this had the potential to be an excellent budget option for riders looking for maximum adventure with minimum impact on their bank accounts. We sent a good Croatian friend to check it out for us and she was delighted with the people and the riding, as well as the warm welcome she received. Our first clients were so happy with their visit that they’ve already been back there and formed a great friendship with Mate and his business partner Marko.
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Holiday Report: Kupres Farm, Bosnia and Herzegovina

November 9th, 2010

Rachael and RobertKupres Farm, Bosnia and Herzegovina, 2010

Rachael and Robert B.

In September 2010, Rachael and Robert spent four days and nights at our Kupres destination in Bosnia and Herzegovina. Rachael was kind enough to share their glowing feedback, as well as their photos, and this are their impressions of the farm. They are a well-travelled English couple with many years of riding experience.

“I just wanted to let you know that we are now back from Bosnia. It was a brilliant holiday, everything you described and more. My only regret is that we did not stay for longer but we will definitely be going back.

I have to admit I was almost put off by the price – I thought that for that price it would be awful. That is why we asked for four days only so if it was bad, it was only four days stuck there, not a week! How wrong I was. We have travelled and ridden in a lot of countries and many we would not go back to, often there is something wrong or dangerous or just silly prices eg. picked up in a 3 wheel car driven by a wannabe racing driver, dirty accommodation, a girth that looks likely to snap or a horse who is skin and bones. However, we will definitely go back to Kupres.
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