Bordeaux Wines riding holiday in France - Far and Ride
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Bordeaux Wines, France





Reviews



I thoroughly enjoyed it and thought it was a great experience. The holiday was both exhilarating at times and relaxing at others. It was a great way to build riding confidence and meet new people. The food was very good and the accommodation comfortable. One guesthouse was 'unique' with dated decor, however, it was very French and the owner was delightful - no criticism. I was very happy with my horse which I think was matched perfectly to me. I had great confidence in him. Tack was good and I was very pleased with the rain poncho and water bottle in the saddle bag. (Favourite memory?) There are many:- cantering through the vineyards; riding through the streets of St. Emilion, but also the good food and French hospitality and taking the horses on the ferry.

Andrea P. (Oct 2018)
 

Horses



Type of horses:

Paint, Arabian, Thoroughbred and warmblood horses (both pure and cross-bred)

Nature of horses:

Robust, good-natured, calm and confident.

Height of horses:

15 - 16.3hh

Weight limit:

95kg / 209lbs

Tack type:

Comfortable trail saddles. All horses are ridden in simple bridles with "myler" type bits.

 

Travel Advice



Please ensure you read the Foreign & Commonwealth Office (FCO) advice before you travel.
 

Ride Description

These rides take place in the wonderful Bordeaux region of France and are exceptional riding experiences. 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.

There are two itineraries, which both start from Moulis en Medoc.

The usual Great Bordeaux Wines Trail 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 Medoc Beaches Trail takes you through the vast Landes pine forests to the Gironde estuary and the beaches of the Atlantic Ocean. You'll pass a succession of lakes (Hourtin, Carcans, Lacanau) and ride across the marsh areas of the lower Medoc as well as the long straight beaches which are perfect for canters (tides permitting).

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!

See Programmes.

 

Food & Accommodation

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 meals are included. Dinners are in a traditional French regional style taken in restaurants and hotels along the route. Picnic lunches tend to be country meals involving cuts of cold meats, cheese and various mixed salads (including local wine).

Please note that appetisers and drinks are not included with dinners.

 

Activities

During the ride you will enjoy cultural visits and wine tasting.

 

Further Details

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).

Tuition: No.

Included: Accommodation, meals, wine with lunches and riding.

Not included: Flights and travel expenses, travel insurance, group set-time transfers, drinks, snacks or other services not mentioned. Some wine tastings are also not included.

 

Travel Information

A set time airport transfer is available from and to Bordeaux airport. Riders meet at Bordeaux airport Hall B, near the snack bar “Brioche Dorée” strictly at 6.30pm. Those arriving in Bordeaux by train will need to take a shuttle to the airport in time for the transfer. A group transfer is also organised, back to the airport, on departure day as well (usually departing at approx. 9 am).

The cost for transfer is 20€ (EUR) per person, return fare, paid on arrival. Please note that no alternative transfers will be offered.

Web site for the shuttle https://30direct.com/en/

Airport: Bordeaux

 

Programmes


Great Bordeaux Wine Trail



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 for the set time transfers strictly by 6.30 pm. 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 at c. 8:00 am, before you are transferred to the horses at c. 9:00am to begin riding at c. 10:00am. You will start to head out over a flat landscape between vineyards and forests. A first picnic will be taken on the banks of the Gironde river, before a tasting of Medoc wine after lunch. You will then cross the Gironde by ferry boat, with the horses, heading towards Blaye (crossing time of approx. 40 mins). Upon arrival at the other side, you will visit the 18th-century Citadelle Vauban on horseback. 

Night 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: Breakfast at c. 8:00 am, before departure on horseback at c. 9:30 am. Today you will ride through a region where vineyards alternate with little forests and which will lead you to the castle Mayne Veil. Here you will enjoy a picnic and tasting of Fronsac wine. In the afternoon you will ride towards Libourne, you will pass through the famous region of Pomerol. Leaving the horses at the place they will stay tonight in Pomerol, you will go to the castle Belles Graves to taste the famous wine Lalande de Pomerol. 

You will spend the evening at the La Tour hotel in Libourne.

Day 5: You will begin today heading in the direction of Saint Emilion passing through the famous properties of château Pétrus, Cheval Blanc and château Figeac. Picnic in Saint Emilion with a tasting of the namesake wine, followed by a free visit to the city of St Emilion. In the afternoon you will leave St Emilion to ride through the Dordogne valley and finally arrive near the Chateau Courros (where a wine tasting will take place) by 7:00pm. You will leave the horses here and transfer to Saint Jean de Blaignac. 

You will spend the night there in a Bed and Breakfast. 

Day 6: Breakfast at c. 8:00 am before departure on horseback by 9:30 am. You will now be in the region of the l'Entre deux mers, with its varied landscapes, hills and woodland, and its beautiful wineries. You pass by to the 13th-century castle of Rauzan. In the afternoon you will ride through gently undulating landscapes where vineyards alternate with forests and which will lead you to the castle of Broustaret (B&B). you will enjoy dinner in the city of Cadillac where you will taste the Premières Côtes de Bordeaux, and later enjoy a nighttime visit of the city.

Day 7: Breakfast at c. 8:00am before departure on horseback at 9:30 am. Heading towards Cadillac the region is very hilly. You will then pass through the valley of Garonne to reach the vineyards of Graves and Sauternes. Picnic at the castle of Myrat, where the Comte of Pontac will give a guided tour and propose a tasting of this gold-coloured wine. In the afternoon you will enjoy gallops between the vineyards and forests that will lead you to Sauternes. During the meal here you will taste the wine of Graves and spend the night at the hotel.

Day 8: After breakfast, it's time for your transfer back to the Bordeaux airport. There will be one group transfer today with no possibility for later transport.



Minimum group size: 5
Maximum group size: 10
Ability description: You need to be capable in all four paces (walk, rising trot, canter and gallop in a forward seat) across varied terrain in open spaces. You should ride regularly and be fit to canter for long distances, with soft hands. You should also be a confident rider.
Type of ride: Trail.
Total riding time: 6 days riding as per itinerary.
Departure dates: 2019: 5-12 October, 26 October-2 November.
2020: 10-17 May*, 31 May-7 June, 12-19 September, 20-27 September*, 3-10 October, 11-18 October*

*These trails run in reverse, starting in Sauternes and ending in Moulis en Medoc
 
Pricing: 2019:

Price per person, based on shared room accommodation: £1545

Single supplement £310 for the week.

Please note that prices do not include transfers, drinks in hotels and restaurants or entrance fees. Some of the wine tastings will also require guests to pay a small fee to take part. This is a very minimal cost of between 6-10€ per person.

2020:

Price per person, based on shared room accommodation: £1592

Single supplement £323 for the week.

Please note that prices do not include transfers, drinks in hotels and restaurants or entrance fees. Some of the wine tastings will also require guests to pay a small fee to take part. This is a very minimal cost of between 6-10€ per person.

Note: All programmes and itineraries are weather dependent; in the face of adverse, or unexpected, weather conditions reasonable attempts will be made to provide equivalent riding.

All programmes are accurate at the time of writing. However, the team may adapt or modify details, whilst aiming to provide a similar experience.



Medoc and Beaches Trail



A beautiful trail combining the chance to discover the wines and beaches of the Medoc region. The ride will take you on a journey through the Gironde region, to learn all about the famous vineyards and amazing beaches this area has to offer. Great riding and ample tasty wine are sure to follow!

Day One:

Arrival at Bordeaux airport for the set time transfers strictly by 6.30 pm. You will be driven to the B&B 'Domaine de Quittignan Brillette' in Moulis en Médoc for your first dinner and overnight.

Day Two:

After breakfast you meet the horses and set off riding through the vineyards of the Listrac and Moulis appellations (geographically names grape/wine regions). Stop for a picnic lunch and wine tasting at Chateau Lannessan before continuing to Pauillac. Your hotel for the night sits on the quays of Pauillac in front of the Gironde estuary.

Day Three:

Ride through the Pauillac appellation vineyard, passing close to Lafite Rothschild (first Grand Cru Classe Pauillac) whose vineyard dates from the 17th century, or Cos d'Estournel (Saint Estephe) dating from 1811. Stop for a picnic lunch and visit of the archaeological dig site of Brion where once a Gallo-Roman villa stood. In the afternoon continue riding through vineyards to reach Begadan in the superior Bordeaux appellation.

Day Four:

Head northwards on the Palus to reach the banks of the estuary. (Palus are land ridges between marshes and streams). You're heading for the picturesque seaport of Goulee. Your picnic lunch is at Richard lighthouse where, from the top (18m) you get a beautiful view of the river. Your overnight hotel is just a few metres from the ocean.

Day Five:

Ride westward to Soulac across a landscape which is reminiscent of the Camargue - vast expanses of water filled meadows covered with horses. Visit the church of Our Lady of Land's End before continuing to the long beach at L'Amelie. Stop for a picnic lunch. The afternoon route follows the same route affording long canters along the beach (dependent on tides) until reaching Montalivet and another ocean fronted hotel.

Day Six:

Ride south, either along the beach or through the forest depending on the tides, stopping at Pin Sec for a picnic lunch. In the afternoon you cross the Gironde moors to reach the small yachting harbour at Hourtin, next to the largest lake in France.

Day Seven:

Ride eastwards through the forest which promises long canters on sandy tracks where you may be lucky enough to spot deer. The fragrance of the pine trees is intoxicating! Picnic in the hamlet of Bernos before riding southerly to return to your starting point at Moulis in Medoc.

Day Eight:

After breakfast you are transferred to the train station or airport. There is just one transfer with no option for earlier/later transfers.



Minimum group size: 5
Maximum group size: 10
Ability description: You need to be capable in all four paces (walk, rising trot, canter and gallop in a forward seat) across varied terrain in open spaces. You should ride regularly and be fit to canter for long distances, with soft hands. You should also be a confident rider.
Type of ride: Mobile trail
Total riding time: 7 nights / 6 days riding
Departure dates: 2020: 23-30 May, 24-31 October
 
Pricing: 2020:

Price per person, based on shared room accommodation: £1592

Single supplement £323 for the week.

Please note that prices do not include transfers, drinks in hotels and restaurants or entrance fees. Some of the wine tastings will also require guests to pay a small fee to take part. This is a very minimal cost of between 6-10€ per person.

Note: All programmes and itineraries are weather dependent; in the face of adverse, or unexpected, weather conditions reasonable attempts will be made to provide equivalent riding.

All programmes are accurate at the time of writing. However, the team may adapt or modify details, whilst aiming to provide a similar experience.