Black Rock Rhino Ride riding holiday in South Africa - Far and Ride
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Black Rock Rhino Ride, South Africa


• 5 Night Itinerary



Type of horses:

Mainly Boerperd and Boerperd crosses and Appaloosas.

Nature of horses:

Safe but with some spirit - a mixture to suit all abilities

Height of horses:

15 - 16 hh

Weight limit:

90kg (but two horses can carry more so please enquire)

Tack type:

Mostly English but there are some South African Trail saddles available.


Travel Advice

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

Ride Description

Hidden deep within the Valley of the Elephants, nestled in the protective embrace of South Africa’s Majestic Drakensberg mountain range, the world’s second largest private rhino protection reserve has operated in secret for twenty years. Here lies 15,000 acres of wild Africa, teaming with game and hosting over 300 rhino.

This conservation reserve is opening its doors for the first time to riders in 2019. Each day brings new adventure, with outrides amongst the rhino and other game, the chance to camp out under the stars and higher adrenaline options like helicopter rides during dehorning operations and white water rafting trips through the gorgeous Blyde River Canyon (at extra cost).

Riding horses on a Rhino sanctuary is a special and beautiful experience. With over 300 rhino you will be guaranteed numerous sightings of these gentle giants. Giraffe, Nyala, Impala, Zebra and Wildebeest are amongst the other wildlife you will enjoy from horseback. The property has been divided into different sections for breeding purposes and each area offers different riding experiences. On the sleep out night you ride to the furthest corner of the reserve to experienced yet more fresh landscapes.

See Programmes.


Food & Accommodation

Most nights are spent at the cosy bush lodge which has a classic safari lodge feel about it. Built under large Knob thorn trees, Rhino and Nyala are typical visitors to the lodge garden.

The main area has a lounge, wifi, bar, dining area, air conditioning and a large pool to help cool down on those hot African days. Four private thatched chalets are tucked into the bush to allow you to immerse yourself in the sounds of the bush. The rooms are luxurious and well-appointed with en-suite bathrroms with showers. Rooms are equipped with mini bar, ceiling fans and a small private veranda.

One night is at sleep out camp and will be spent around the campfire. Your beds will be comfortable and you will be provided with water for washing and a bush toilet (long-drop). It is rough but fun. NB. A tent will be provided in case of rain.

You will not go hungry! Meals are focused on giving guests a taste of the multi-cultural South African flavours.

The day starts with coffee and something light to nibble on as it's usually very early! After the morning ride you return to brunch which includes fresh fruit and full continental and hot breakfast options. There is high tea before the afternoon ride which may include stuffed pancakes or wraps as well as cakes. 

Dinner is a three course affair and will include some traditional meals. Some game meat, such as kudu or impala may be included. 

Vegetarians and special diets can be accommodated with advance notice.

Local beers, ciders, wines and standard soft drink selections are included during your stay. The bar stocks premium liquor too but you have to pay locally for these.



There is a pool at the lodge and a comfortable seating area for relaxing when not riding.

Non-riders can be accommodated and there are a number of activities on offer which may incur an additional charge. Non-riders will also be taken to the sleep-out camp with the staff.

Optional additional activities include:
- Working hands-on with the rhino, such as de-horning
- Joining anti-poaching rangers on night patrols and receiving tracking and/or weapons training
- Wake-boarding and water-skiing on the nearby Ebenezer Dam
- Day trip to Blyde Canyon, which can include helicopter trips, white water rafting, paragliding, ziplining etc.
- Fishing in the dam (free beer if you donate your catch for that nights supper!)


Further Details

Languages: English

Health requirements: The Kruger area is considered a malarial area and so you are likely to require anti-malarial medication.

Age limit: 10 years and older

Tuition: No

Included: Accommodation, meals, drinks (including local wine, beer, cider etc), all riding

Not included: Flights, transfers, insurance, tips


Travel Information

There are no direct flights to Hoedspruit or Phalaborwa from the UK so you will have to fly via Johannesburg. There are daily flights from Johannesburg with South African Airways, although please be aware that the Phalabowra route is serviced with smaller planes and so a weight limit of 15kg for luggage often applies.

Your hosts will collect you from the airport and transfer you to the lodge, and with luck, you should arrive in time for lunch. Transfers cost R450 each way (max 4 people in the vehicle). Alternatively you can hire a car and we will supply driving directions.

Airport: Hoedspruit (HDS)

Alternative Airport: Phalaborwa (PHW)



5 Night Itinerary

A five day riding safari on an exclusive nature reserve with a large number of rhino. Four nights are spent at the lodge with one special sleepout night included too.

Day One:

You will be collected from Hoedspruit or Phalabowra airport and transferred to the lodge in time for lunch. After a short chance to settle in you are taken to meet the horses for your first orientation ride - this is a short ride in the late afternoon just to relax into the bush and recover from your long journey.

Day Two:

After an early wake-up call with tea/coffee and a light bite to eat, you mount up for a 2-3 hour ride into the bush. The early morning is the best time for game viewing and so hopefully you will catch sight of some species whilst you get to know your horse.

Return to the lodge for brunch and a relaxing siesta time around the pool. After tea and cake it is then time to set out for a sunset ride of c. 2 hours - the light is beautiful in the afternoons. Return to the lodge for dinner.

Day Three:

Today you will be feeling more comfortable with your horses and so you'll venture into an area with a high concentration of rhino. You'll stop for coffee mid-morning in the bush with the horses before returning to the lodge for brunch. 

After tea and cake your afternoon ride is bound to yield rhino as they are fed by the rangers and you are invited to watch. Later enjoy drinks around the fire followed by a traditional South African braai (barbeque) at the lodge.

Day Four:

Another early start so that you can ride out at dawn for the best animal sightings, then return to the lodge for brunch. By now you will have ridden a couple of different horses and will be able to choose your favourite for the overnight campout. 

Pack an overnight bag ready for when you meet for afternoon tea and this will go ahead of you by vehicle. Comfortable beds, water and a bush toilet await you in the bush - it is rustic but fun. Dinner will be a traditional potjie kos (South African stew) around the fire. The night sky and nocturnal sounds will leave a lasting impression. (Tents are available in inclement weather).

Day Five:

Awake in camp with the campfire still smouldering and coffee waiting. Ride to a part of the reserve you've not visited yet this week before heading home to the lodge and hot showers, followed by brunch.

A restful siesta will be in order before a short ride to a special sundowner spot the overlooks the reserve.

Day Six:

An early ride before breakfast and then you'll be transferred to the airport for your flight home. 

Accommodation: Four nights in the lodge in comfortable chalets with one night sleepout camp.
Minimum group size: 1
Maximum group size: 6
Ability description: Intermediate riders who are confident at all paces across all terrain.
Type of ride: Safari with one night sleep out
Total riding time: 6 days / 5 nights / 5 days riding (c. 4 hours riding per day)
Departure dates: Dates to suit - open all year
Pricing: 2019:

£1556 per adult sharing
£1063 per child (under 12 years)

£457 single supplement (if not willing to share)