Lusitano Dressage riding holiday in Portugal - Far and Ride
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Lusitano Dressage, Portugal


• Dressage Tuition

• Cultural Programme



It was an amazing time with such friendly hosts, a trainer with great knowledge and amazing horses. Because of everything "around" was well organized and perfect it was possible to be totally focused on this great horses and your training. The trainer, Joćo, was looking perfectly on the horses and the equipment. Everything was in a good condition - like these were your own things.

Raffaela K.
Joao and Susana were terrific hosts and we cannot fault any aspect of the holiday. As a rider, I was looking for a holiday where I could improve my riding skills in classical dressage and not a glorified trekking holiday or basic instruction in walk, trot and canter. Joao is a great instructor showing a great depth of knowledge of his subject and is English is excellent. He and Susana are also very good riders although Susana was confined to the kitchen most of the time cooking fantastic meals for us!

Helen D.
This was a great holiday. It was everything I expected and more. The reason for the holiday was to improve my riding skills and due to the expert tuition, I certainly did improve beyond my expectations. The horses are of an excellent standard and very well looked after which is important to me also. The Instructor Joao was the best trainer I have ever had. He was an incredible rider and horseman. He really knows his stuff and can read what is going on at every second and correct you from the ground with precision. He is not afraid to push you to get more and knows when to stop. He is outstanding and I have learned so much which I will take on to my next horses.

Sarah C. (April 2018)
Brilliant! Excellent instructor. Tack and Xisto (horses) were perfect. I had Lindo the first day, but found his action uncomfortable... When asked for a different horse the next day, they found the ideal one.

Jean M. (April 2018)
Very enjoyable experience. A very warm welcome from our hosts (Susana and Joćo) and nothing was too much trouble. Made my 70th Birthday very special and memorable - cake & flowers.

Sarah & Owen W. (June 2019)
Joao and Susana were brilliant hosts! The lessons were full on and the tution was excellent Joao's spoken English is first class and explained all the dressage moves very well, I was soon having a go at Passage, Piaffe and Spanish Walk! My aim for the holiday was to be able to improve my riding skills, I was able to perform moves that I never thought I would be able to do and I go to do it on a beautifully trained Grand Prix Stallion!

Chris & Joanna


Type of horses:


Nature of horses:

Well-schooled and responsive

Height of horses:

c. 16hh

Weight limit:

100kg / 15 stone 7 lbs

Tack type:

Traditional Portuguese or Dressage saddles with simple snaffle or double bridles.


Travel Advice

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

Ride Description

This small-scale riding stables is just 30-40 mins drive from Lisbon, situated in an area where you can "get lost in time" and feel the rhythm of a typical old Portuguese village surrounded by vineyards, gorgeous landscapes and mountain views. Joao and Susana welcome guests for tuition on their spectacular Lusitano horses. There is a 15x40m indoor arena and a huge outdoor arena alongside paddocks and stables for their 15 horses. The stables are within easy walking distance of the Campo Real Hotel where you will stay - you have the possibility to use their modern facilities including swimming pools and spa when not in the saddle.

At this dressage centre you will ride Lusitano horses for both dressage and working equitation as the horses have been well trained in both these disciplines. Classical dressage needs no introduction, but working equitation is not a common activity here in the UK. The sport aims to show off and utilise the working capabilities of the Lusitano horse and competitors have to complete a gymkhana type event as well as a dressage test. In this event, rider and horse have to negotiate obstacles such as bridges, gates and jumps. At high levels and in team events, they may also have to work with cattle to split a specific cow from the herd.

Working equitation lessons are available during the spring/summer whereas classical dressage lessons are available all year round. During the lessons you will have the opportunity to try riding Grand Prix exercises such as piaffe and passage on the schoolmaster horses. All lessons are of one hour duration and there is a maximum of two riders in each lesson.

No previous experience of classical dressage is necessary but those who already understand some dressage will get plenty out of this holiday. You do need to be able to ride already (walk, trot and canter) but your dressage experience can range from beginner to experienced.

The instructor, João Batalha, has been teaching classical dressage for more than 6 years in Portugal and other countries in Europe. After several years teaching in one of the most renowned schools and riding holiday centres in Portugal, he now shares his time between teaching exclusively at this stables and competing at national level in Portuguese Equitation and Working Equitation.

Cathy from Far and Ride was lucky enough to ride here in October 2017 and will be happy to answer any questions you may have.

See Programmes.


Food & Accommodation

You stay at the Campo Real hotel in Torres Vedras, which is 500m from the stables (10 minute walk or a short drive).

The hotel has a pool and spa. Guests have access to the spa facilities (jacuzzi, sauna etc) but massages and treatments are all payable locally. There is also an 18 hole golf course (payable locally).

All rooms have a private balcony or terrace, free WiFi, air conditioning, Nespresso coffee machine and TV. Rooms are entry-level, but you can upgrade for extra cost if you wish - please enquire.

Half-board is included (breakfasts and dinners).

Breakfast is taken at the hotel and is a buffet selection.

Dinners are taken in nearby restaurants accompanied by your hosts. These usually comprise of two courses and include a starter followed by either fish or meat, together with accompanying salads and vegetables. The meals are typically Portuguese and include coffee or tea, water and juice. There is also local wine included with the evening meal (approximately one bottle between two people).

Additional alcoholic and soft beverages are paid separately and there is a bar so you can choose what you wish to drink.

You are at the hotel during lunchtimes and this has a restaurant and a bar and you can choose and pay for meals as you like.



Non-riders are welcomed but we recommend hiring a car so you are free to explore the local area. The hotel is located within the heart of the Protected Landscape of Socorro and Archeira Mountains and does have a Spa, golf course and tennis courts (all payable locally).

There are many distinguished wineries in the region where you will be able to go and taste some typical Portuguese wines.

You can also visit the beautiful Santa Cruz beach, which is only 30km away.

In addition to the area surrounding the hotel, which has some typical villages to explore, you can also visit some of the following tourist areas:
Mafra - 33 km
Ericeira - 45 km
Lisbon - 45 km
Portuguese School of Equestrian Art - 45 km
Óbidos - 50 km
Sintra - 53 km

Additional information on these areas is provided by your hosts.


Further Details

Languages: English and Portuguese

Health requirements: General good health

Age limit: Riders must be 7 years or older, although there are no ponies, so children must be happy on horses.

Tuition: Yes, according to programme

Included: Accommodation, half board meals (breakfast and dinner), wine (1 bottle per 2 persons, per meal), water, Dressage lessons according to the programme, swimming pool and use of hotel spa/gym facilities.

Not included: Flights, travel insurance, airport transfers, lunch, off-site tours, spa treatments, golf, tennis, additional drinks


Travel Information

There are many flight options to Lisbon from the UK with both TAP (Air Portugal) and British Airways flying regularly from London. Alternative options are EasyJet from Liverpool as well as other regional airports.

Transfers from Lisbon airport are available at an additional cost of 80 euro per vehicle each way (max of 4 people) payable locally.

Check-in at the farm is between 2 pm and 6 pm each day - if your flight is delayed then please let the farm know so that they can make arrangements. Check-out on your departure day is midday.

Alternatively, you may wish to hire a car at the airport and we can provide driving directions.

Airport: Lisbon



Dressage Tuition

Depending on your chosen programme, you will have either one or two lessons each day. If opting for two lessons, then this will be one in the morning and one in the afternoon. If having one lesson a day then this will usually be the morning so you have the afternoon free to relax or explore the area, but this is flexible.

Lessons are one hour duration and there is a maximum of two riders in each lesson.

During spring/summer it is possible to have Working Equitation lessons, which includes negotiating obstacles such as bridges, jumps and gates. Classical dressage lessons are available all year round and could include trying grand prix movements such as piaffe and passage. Your instructor will tailor the lessons depending on your ability and wishes.

It is compulsory to wear a helmet when riding.

Minimum group size: 1
Maximum group size: 3
Ability description: All abilities can be catered for, but you should be comfortable in walk, trot and canter in an arena.
Type of ride: Instruction
Total riding time: 1 or 2 hours each day depending on programme
Departure dates: 2021:
Dates to suit. Open all year around except 24 December until 1 January.
Closed 1-14 November for Golega Horse Fair.
Pricing: 2021:

Intensive Programme (six nights; two lessons each day; ten lessons in total)
£1429 per person in single room
£1233 per person sharing double room

Normal Programme (six nights; one lesson each day; six lessons in total)
£1115 per person in single room
£918 per person sharing double room

Non rider: £445 for six nights (sharing with rider)

Half board meals supplement: £135 to have lunches included with your stay also.

Prices include 6 nights accommodation, half board meals (breakfast & dinner) and 1 or 2 lessons per day.

NB. Prices are based on staying in entry-level rooms at the hotel. Please note that last-minute bookings may be more expensive if no entry level rooms are available.

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.

Cultural Programme

A great new cultural programme where you have an opportunity to improve your riding and then visit the most beautiful and important places in the region (west Lisbon).

Start the day with a lesson each morning, enjoy a relaxing lunch and then head off on one of the tours to the following places:

- Winery with wine tasting.

- Obidos: the finest example of a Portuguese walled town and one of the best tourist destinations of the Lisbon region.

- Traditional tack shop visit.

- Mafra: a pretty little Portuguese town that contains one of Europe’s largest and most extravagant palaces, the Palacio de Mafra.

Minimum group size: 1
Maximum group size: 4
Ability description: You should be comfortable in walk, trot and canter in an arena.
Type of ride: Stationary with dressage lessons.
Total riding time: 4 lessons.
Departure dates: 2021: Flexible departures, please enquire.
Pricing: 2021:

5 Day Cultural Programme (4 nights with 4 lessons and 4 tours)
£1137 per person in single room
£980 per person sharing double room

Non rider: £586 for 4 nights (sharing with rider)

Prices include half board meals (breakfast & dinner).

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.