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Pristine shorelines, rolling cliff tops and deep river gorges – discover South Africa’s Wild Coast on horseback! This 7-day point-to-point trail up the coast of the Eastern Cape combines local culture, diverse wildlife, spectacular scenery and comfortable accommodation – quite simply a rider’s paradise!
South Africa’s little-visited Wild Coast has it all: lush forested valleys, rolling grasslands, freshwater rivers and of course the spectacular beaches offer some of the best riding anywhere in where in the world. You’ll have a whole week to explore this stunning landscape, riding between comfortable beachfront hotels while your bags are transported in a separate vehicle.
The riding is hugely varied and is often dictated by the tide: one morning you may be cantering along cliff top paths or exploring a sand dune forest, another may find you crossing the Great Kei River on a pontoon before picnicking in a secluded cove! En route you’ll see traditional Xhosa villages, the stunning Nongqawases Pools and waterfalls and the towering wreck of the Jacaranda. And as you canter on along the deserted shoreline, hooves pounding on the hard, wet sand, you might also spot dolphins and whales at play in the warm waters of the Indian Ocean. Your trusty guides will be on hand at all times to take suggestions on things to see and to make sure that you, and your horse, are well looked-after. The comfy, family-run hotels all have delicious food and some great local wines, the perfect way to round off a magical day on the trail.
We think the Wild Coast trail is a fantastic trip, but only if you know what you’re doing. This means being competent and confident on a horse, with some experience of riding in open countryside. You’re likely to encounter uneven, rocky terrain in places, so you’ll be expected to know how to negotiate this. There’ll also be stretches of flat beach or grassland that are best covered at a canter, so if you are a beginner rider you will not manage the pace of the ride (and the rest of the group won’t enjoy waiting for you to catch up!). If you meet all these criteria, then this trip is absolutely for you! ‘Exhilarating’ is the word most guests use to describe the safari, though the ‘spectacular scenery’ and ‘lovely’ and ‘happy’ horses also get a lot of mentions.
Expect a fairly full itinerary – you’ll be riding most mornings (9:30am start) and afternoons, but there’s plenty of time to relax on the trail with long picnics and pub lunches and the opportunity for a dip in the sea or pool. All the hotels you’ll stay at a small and family-owned, but with a healthy dose of comfort – most have pools, some have Jacuzzis and saunas, all have top-notch food. At mealtimes the group might sit around one big table, so if you’re after absolute seclusion best look elsewhere. However, most guests, whether families, couples or singles, say they really enjoy sharing this fantastic experience with other like-minded horse-lovers.
We select specialist operators who are experienced, qualified and most importantly passionate about what they do. Your enquiry will be passed straight through to the experts who will be able to give you the best advice.