Ask a Question

Check Availability

Celtic Trails

Overview

A riding destination to bring you a touch of the true Irish spirit, taking you riding on Celtic trails through historic parts of the Irish countryside and beautiful nature. Guests can take part in fascinating trail rides through Co. Clare, Co. Galway and the special Burren National Park or can enjo…

Highlights

  • Choice of based programme or trails
  • Variety of Irish bred quality horses
  • Trails through Slieve Aughy Mountains
  • Wonderful Irish hospitality

Essential Facts

  • 3 itineraries available
  • Max 8 riders per group
  • Average of 3 - 4 hours riding per day
  • Weight limit: 85kg / 187lbs / 13st 5lbs.
    more info

Description

A riding destination to bring you a touch of the true Irish spirit, taking you riding on Celtic trails through historic parts of the Irish countryside and beautiful nature. Guests can take part in fascinating trail rides through Co. Clare, Co. Galway and the special Burren National Park or can enjoy a more relaxed based stay at the 300-year-old farmhouse, benefitting from beautiful hacking in the nearby woodlands and across farmland. More novice riders are welcome to some basic tuition (enough to get them riding safely and able to enjoy the trail riding) and to explore the land on a trusty Irish horse with a knowledgeable guide.

In the rural West of Ireland, the riding centre is situated in the rolling hills of the Slieve Aughty Mountains with views down to the River Shannon. The surrounding areas are quiet and peaceful making for an ideal getaway where you can simply enjoy the beautiful green countryside that Ireland has to offer. Guests without a whole week to spare can take part in their shorter programme combining fabulous horse riding with visits to Irish castles and monastic ruins, certainly one for those with a love of history. Families or non-riders might also enjoy the special opportunity of donkey walking available here!

Horses & Riding

Tack

The tack used here is predominantly English style with some Western saddles possibly being available upon request. The horses are trained in English style riding and so don't always respond well to neck reining. The bridles used are simple English leather ones with snaffle bits.

Horses

Irish horses are renowned for both quality and temperament and all the horses here are Irish bred, many of them having grown up on the farm. They are trained to be good, solid, sensible trail riding horses and thus they are perfect for taking you across their homeland. There is a variety of horses including Irish Cobs, Connemaras and Irish Hunters, all of which can offer you a truly enjoyable ride.

Riding

There are 3 itineraries:

  • Galway Clare Burren Trail is a trail ride
  • Irish Castle and Monastic Ruin Ride is a based ride
  • Residential Riding Package is a based ride

Ages

Riders must be a minimum of 12 years old.

Health

None specific.

Weight

85kg / 187lbs / 13st 5lbs.

Food & Accommodation

Food

Hearty Irish breakfasts and traditional farmhouse cooking is served, usually sat by the open turf fire. Lunch is usually a tasty buffet.

Prices include tea, coffee and fresh spring water. Other drinks (soft drinks and alcohol) are not included in the packages but are available for purchase.

Accommodation

The lodge is a 300 year old farmhouse which has been tastefully restored to offer guests a comfortable and welcoming stay. It maintains an air of times gone by but features all modern facilities that guests might need. Guest rooms are all en suite and individually decorated.

The rooms available are 3 doubles (or twins), 2 twins, 3 singles and 1 triple. They are all en suite. There is one additional double room which has a separate but private bathroom across the hallway.

During the trail rides guests stay in the lodge (sometimes you will be driven back there, leaving the horses at a stop off point along the trail) and in guesthouses along the way.

Complimentary WiFi is available at the farmhouse and in most of the guesthouses during the trail ride.

Itineraries

Galway Clare Burren Trail Standard accommodation.

Irish Castle and Monastic Ruin Ride Standard accommodation.

Residential Riding Package Standard accommodation.

Other Activities

Donkey walking - many years ago donkeys were seen as a hardworking farm animal and were of great value when working the land. Nowadays there are not many working donkeys left in Ireland and most are treated as pets. Here you can book a different kind of experience... "walking with a donkey!" This is great fun for families with children, donkey lovers or perhaps non-riders wanting to do something different.

Travel

Guests are advised to fly into Shannon Airport and from here we can arrange your airport transfers or you can hire a car (we can provide driving directions). Transfers are available at additional cost.

Testimonials

Trudi, Oct. 18, 2019

Favorite Memory - My horse and the views over Galway from the Trail.


Niall M., July 24, 2018

Now that I've got home from sailing off the Cork coast (which was also amazing) just wanted to say what a great riding holiday we had. Nicola & Bertie certainly know how to organise a good riding holiday! Horses were great, tack good, accommodation & food good. Guides good. It was amazing! Please thank Nicola & Bertie for a great time. I would certainly recommend the holiday to any intermediate/ advanced rider. Cheers


Christine L., Aug. 17, 2017

I had my first riding holiday (Galway Burren Trail) and it was a perfect trip. Friendly staff, very nice other guests, well-kept and trained horses, comfortable farmhouse B&Bs, delicious food, good weather, wonderful landscape. The horses were very well trained and every horse was perfect for its rider. Nothing to improve the holiday, it is already perfect.


Ann L., Dec. 3, 2014

The holiday was excellent, the riding was very well timetabled and nice riding through lovely countryside. All the team were lovely, particularly the two guides who looked after us very well.


Itinerary & Pricing

Day 1 - Saturday

Riding: No riding.

Pick up from Shannon Airport (if requested) and transfer to the lodge where you will stay for the first four nights. On arrival you can just relax, take a stroll around the property or for the more adventurous the possibility to go on a guided boat tour to the historic Holy Island with its monastic settlement of the 9th century.  In the evening you will get to know your fellow riders for the week over a candlelit dinner in the 300 year old restored farmhouse.

Day 2 - Sunday

Riding: 3 hours

Following breakfast, you will receive an introduction to your horse and enjoy an easy half day ride along the peaceful slopes of the wooded Slieve Aughty Mountains and across widespread bogland, where you might see the local farmers cutting and drying the turf in the traditional way.  You will finish the ride on one of the fields where the horses stay overnight and you will be taken back to the guesthouse for lunch.

Day 3 - Monday

Riding: 4 - 6 hours

Today you will enjoy fascinating views over the majestic Lough Derg and River Shannon, along the tracks you will be passing old farm ruins and miles of stonewalls.  After lunch in the forest you will head along the peaceful trails through the Slieve Aughty Mountains and ride past some rural farms to a new overnight field for the horses.

Day 4 - Tuesday

Riding: 4 - 6 hours

Leaving the sheltered pasture you will head for the top of the hills and overlook endless woods and grazing lands to the north, west and south, long before you get there you will be able to spot the sandy shore of Lough Graney.  After lunch the trail goes along the water and then you splash across the lake,  the ride then takes you through typical farmland with its juicy green fields and endless stone walls surrounding the peacefully grazing cattle and sheep.

Day 5 - Wednesday

Riding: 4 - 6 hours

Lovely wood tracks guide you further westwards overlooking Glandaria (the valley of the Kings) the wide fertile valley of the River Shannon.  After lunch you will cross the boggy uplands as County Clare unfolds around you and up in the distance rising hills of the famous Burren National Park.  On a clear day we will even catch the first glimpse of Galway Bay.  In the afternoon your horses will be transferred by lorry to tomorrow's starting point.  You will be staying in the charming village of Corofin with its countless pubs.

Day 6 - Thursday

Riding: 3 - 6 hours

Today you will experience the unique and rocky landscape of the Burren National Park. Here you will discover a variety of rare and colourful flora and fauna, as well as a number of highly interesting prehistoric settlements.  Dolmens and Wedge tombs line up next to Norman stone fort ruins and Celtic ring forts.  Here you will stop for lunch with stunning views across the Burren landscape. Tonight is spent in the quirky village of Lisdoonvarna, home to the bizarrely famous "Matchmaking festival".

Day 7 - Friday

Riding: 4 - 6 hours

Riding westwards through the Burren, learning about the impressive Poulnabrone Dolmen and the extensive and dangerous cave systems in thes special area.  You will lead your horse down an old Irish famine green road, then rest for lunch overlooking the story telling landscape.  After lunch you lead your horse up the last hill for the breathtaking view over the Atlantic Sea, the famous Aran Islands and the rugged Connemara Mountains.  The extremely rough shore of County Clare stretches out way below as you enjoy the last canters along the old stone walled tracks on Slieve Elva.  In the glittering afternoon sunlight the impressive silhouette of the Cliffs of Moher rise in the distance, near the ruins of Ballinalaken Castle your ride ends.   Tonight will offer another chance to explore the colourful village of Lisdoonvarna.

Day 8 - Saturday

Riding: No riding.

After breakfast, you will continue your onwards journey or take a transfer back to Shannon Airport for your departure (extra cost). 

Please note that the itinerary may change without prior notice due to weather conditions or circumstances beyond your hosts' control.

Accommodation

Guesthouse and B&B accommodation along the trail route, usually with shared twin/double bedrooms.

Experience Intermediate / Experienced

Intermediate and above, capable of walk, trot and canter in open countryside and happy to ride for long hours.

Minimum group size 2
Maximum group size 8
Departure windows

May 1, 2021 - May 8, 2021

May 8, 2021 - May 15, 2021

May 15, 2021 - May 22, 2021

May 22, 2021 - May 29, 2021

May 29, 2021 - June 5, 2021

June 5, 2021 - June 12, 2021

June 12, 2021 - June 19, 2021

June 19, 2021 - June 26, 2021

June 26, 2021 - July 3, 2021

July 3, 2021 - July 10, 2021

July 10, 2021 - July 17, 2021

July 17, 2021 - July 24, 2021

July 24, 2021 - July 31, 2021

July 31, 2021 - Aug. 7, 2021

Aug. 14, 2021 - Aug. 21, 2021

Aug. 21, 2021 - Aug. 28, 2021

Aug. 28, 2021 - Sept. 4, 2021

Sept. 4, 2021 - Sept. 11, 2021

Sept. 11, 2021 - Sept. 18, 2021

Sept. 18, 2021 - Sept. 25, 2021

Sept. 25, 2021 - Oct. 2, 2021

Pricing

2021
High Season (June, July and August), sharing
£1280 $1775 €1500
2021
Normal Season (April, May, September), sharing
£1185 $1645 €1390
2021
Non-Rider, sharing
£555 $775 €655
Included 7 nights accommodation in shared rooms, all meals from dinner on arrival day to breakfast on departure day, tea, coffee, drinking water, 5.5 days riding as per itinerary and luggage transport during the trails.
Not included Flights, personal travel insurance, airport transfers, drinks, tips and personal expenses.

Extras

2021 - Shannon Airport Transfer £30 $42 €35
Paid to Far and Ride
Costs are per person, each way.
2021 - Single Supplement £145 $200 €170
Paid to Far and Ride
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.

Day 1 - Saturday

Riding: No riding.

Arrival at Shannon Airport and transfer (if requested) to the riding centre. Transfer is approximately 2 hours and you will stay at the tastefully restored 300 year old farmhouse for the full five nights. On arrival day guests are invited simply relax and recover from their journey, or perhaps to take a stroll on the well mapped East Clare Walking Trail just nearby. In the evening you will get to know your fellow riders and enjoy dinner by candlelight and open turf fire.

Day 2 - Sunday

Riding: 2 hours

After breakfast you will head out to the horses. Every rider can bond with their horse by grooming and tacking them up themselves - don't worry as there are lots of helping hands around you! Your first ride will take you along forest tracks and quiet country lanes, passing some lovely abandoned 18th century farms. After lunch, you will be driven to the nearby harbour of Mountshannon, from where you will visit Holy Island by Boat.  The island is one of the most famous monastic sites in Ireland, with religious pilgrims travelling here until the mid-19th century. You will note the discarded ruins of no less than five churches, early monastic cells and a pre-12th century cemetery, as well as the island's iconic preserved tower.  After this you will have time for a stroll through the village, then back to the farmhouse for a wonderful home cooked dinner.

Day 3 - Monday

Riding: 2 - 3 hours

Today's ride will take you into the hills of the Slieve Aughty Mountains in order to enjoy prominent views out over the sparkling Shannon river. In the afternoon you will get to visit the impressive Portumna workhouse museum to experience the other side of Irelands dark and complex history. This will be followed by a chance to walk around the impressive 17th century Portumna Castle with its beautifully restored walled gardens. You will also have time for shopping in the town or to visit an authentic Irish pub, until your return to the farmhouse to relax by the peat fire and enjoy a traditional home cooked dinner.

Day 4 - Tuesday

Riding: 2 - 3 hours

This morning's ride will follow quiet tracks through Ireland's beautiful rural countryside.  The afternoon visit will bring you to the secluded ruins of the Pallas Castle, one of the best preserved tower-houses and walled castle grounds of the Irish gentry in the 14th century.  Explore its crumbling walls and discover a lifestyle forgotten.

After a hearty dinner back at the farmhouse, you may be invited to join your hosts for an outing to the local village pub. Meet some of the local characters and experience some true Irish hospitality!

Day 5 - Wednesday

Riding: 4 hours

On your last day to you will be able to enjoy a full day of riding. The morning ride takes you across the magical landscape of bog and heather, you will have lunch out on the trail.  In the afternoon ride you will pass by a typical Celtic dolmen, which is believed to be 5000 years old!  The ride will finish on a field where the horses are happily turned out.

Tonight you will enjoy your final night in the warm comfort and welcoming atmosphere of the farmhouse.

Day 6 - Thursday

Riding: No riding.

After breakfast it is time to say 'slan abhaile' and to get ready for the transfer (if booked) back to Shannon. 

Please note that the itinerary may change without prior notice due to weather conditions or circumstances beyond your hosts' control.

Accommodation

Sleep at the guesthouse each night, in shared twin/double bedrooms.

Experience Intermediate / Experienced

Strong confident novice and above. Capable of walk, trot and canter in open countryside.

Minimum group size 2
Maximum group size 8
Departure windows

May 15, 2021 - May 20, 2021

May 29, 2021 - June 3, 2021

June 12, 2021 - June 17, 2021

June 26, 2021 - July 1, 2021

July 10, 2021 - July 15, 2021

July 24, 2021 - July 29, 2021

Aug. 7, 2021 - Aug. 12, 2021

Aug. 21, 2021 - Aug. 26, 2021

Sept. 4, 2021 - Sept. 9, 2021

Sept. 11, 2021 - Sept. 16, 2021

Sept. 18, 2021 - Sept. 23, 2021

Oct. 9, 2021 - Oct. 14, 2021

Oct. 16, 2021 - Oct. 21, 2021

Pricing

2021
Non-Rider, sharing
£660 $915 €775
2021
Rider, sharing
£910 $1265 €1070
Included 5 nights accommodation in shared rooms, all meals from dinner on arrival day to breakfast on departure day, tea, coffee, drinking water, 4 days of riding, as well as sightseeing trips as mentioned in the programme.
Not included Flights, personal travel insurance, airport transfers, drinks, tips and personal expenses.

Extras

2021 - Shannon Airport Transfer £30 $42 €35
Paid to Far and Ride
Costs are per person, each way.
2021 - Single Supplement £102 $142 €120
Paid to Far and Ride
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.

Days 1 to 7

Riding: 2 - 3 hours

This package includes approximately 15 hours of horse riding or lessons and runs from early April to late October. Riding is around 2 and a half hours each morning with the afternoons as free time.

Accommodation

Sleep at the guesthouse each night, in shared twin/double bedrooms.

Experience Beginner / Intermediate / Experienced

All levels of rider can be accommodated and the programme will be tailored accordingly.

Minimum group size 2
Maximum group size 8
Departure windows

April 3, 2021 - Oct. 23, 2021  (Saturday-Saturday during these dates)

Pricing

2021
Rider; Sharing
£840 $1165 €985
2021
Children (8-11 years); Sharing
£755 $1050 €885
2021
Non Rider; Sharing
£555 $775 €655
Included 7 nights accommodation in shared rooms, all meals from dinner on arrival day to breakfast on departure day, tea, coffee, drinking water & 6 days of riding as per the itinerary.
Not included Flights, personal travel insurance, airport transfers, drinks, tips and personal expenses.

Extras

2021 - Shannon Airport Transfer £30 $42 €35
Paid to Far and Ride
Costs are per person, each way.
2021 - Single Supplement £145 $200 €170
Paid to Far and Ride
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.