Reviews
1129 reviews    1 2 3 4 36
Macatoo - Botswana
Experience Level

Riding Safari

5 star rating   9 January 2019

The selection of horses available is great. It was nice to ride different horses over the two weeks which added to the overall experience


Shekhawati Rides - India
Experience Level

Christmas ride

5 star rating   9 January 2019

The marwari horse was so fun to ride. Rode Sonia, a sparkly little bomb of energy. The horses were very well kept and looked after.


Los Alamos - Spain
Experience Level

Villa Based Ride

2 star rating   8 January 2019

The riding was a bit one-note compared to our previous experience with the dolphin trail in Portugal (which was brilliant) - most of the time was spent walking in single file on very tight woodland tracks which wasn't that conducive to chatting, punctuated with short spells on the beach and firebreak. It would've been great to spend more time riding around the town next to the beach, as I think we all found it really interesting to see the houses there and something that wasn't forest!

[In The Saddle Comment: Los Alamos is based in a forested area and so much of the riding is based on forest tracks. However there are lots of open spaces where people chat if they want to. The rides are not around the town because the vast majority of clients prefer the serenity of being away from houses.]

The main, and rather unusual note I have is on the business model that the farm seems to be run on. Many of the customers end up buying the horses which then stay in Spain for training, before being taken back to the UK. Half of the group were new, and we all collectively found this rather strange.

There seemed to be some pressure to buy, and in-fact two sales were made over the week we were there. It's obviously a great model for the owners – customers buy horses and then pay for their keep in Spain while other customers ride them, but we felt a little bit uneasy about the whole thing

Myself and one other guest rode horses that both reared on a couple of occasions – this was fine for us, but I don't feel the standard of horse is as high as was drummed into us (rather exhaustingly) throughout the week.

[In The Saddle comment: Los Alamos do occasionally sell their horses but this is no more than 3 or 4 horses a year and is definitely not a business focus. We have checked our records and by coincidence on this particular week (September 2018) the other guests had previously bought horses from Los Alamos and two of the group were specifically in Spain to buy horses and so we can see how this could have left you with the impression that it was a key focus for Los Alamos.

We are surprised and sorry to read that your horses reared on occasion. This is very unusual feedback on Los Alamos horses. All incidents such as this would be logged and we hadn't been informed that any horses were misbehaving.]


Horizon Lodge - South Africa
Experience Level

Horizon Lodge

5 star rating   8 January 2019

The holiday far exceeded our expectations. From the staff through to the facilities. Nothing was too much trouble. I loved the family atmosphere of the ranch. Words can’t describe how great a time we had.


Ant's Lodges - South Africa
Experience Level

Ant's Nest

5 star rating   6 January 2019

We were a family group with ages ranging from 6 to 75+ and with riding experience ranging from beginner to very experienced. The rides were divided into groups based on experience or inclination and there were also opportunities to divide rides if some riders wanted a faster or slower pace. In other words there was total flexibility and the guides were very experienced and attentive. There are a large number of horses and ponies available and great trouble was taken in matching riders with suitable mounts. Game viewing is exceptionally good and often time is spent quietly watching a wide variety of animals including Rhino and Giraffe. Equally there are many opportunities for fast canters and gallops on long sandy tracks.


Wild Coast - South Africa
Experience Level

Wild Coast Adventure Trail

4 star rating   6 January 2019

I was first given a horse for which I was clearly the wrong match, and I would not have enjoyed doing a week on that horse. I got then a different horse who was lovely. I think there is a wide range of horses, and there are quite a few that I would not wish to ride for a week, while others seem great to ride.

The guides are wonderful, and will do everything they can to make the trip enjoyable; and so just don't hesitate to speak to them.

The riding was great, lots of canters on the beach and elsewhere. Lots of trotting too.

The tack was great.


Monte Velho - Portugal
Experience Level

Monte Velho

5 star rating   6 January 2019

Absolutely outstanding. This is my second trip to Monte Vehlo and, again, it surpassed expectations.
The horses are beautifully schooled to the highest of standards and the instructors top notch. It is very rare to find somewhere where one can ride horses of this quality. All my lessons were brilliant and by the end of the week i had done half-passes, passage and piaffe on my favourite horse Regalo. Will be going back again and again i hope.


Estancias - Chile
Experience Level

Estancias Ride 10 days-9 nights

5 star rating   6 January 2019

It is difficult to give a single rating regarding the horses given that we ride different horses (from the different estancias/gauchos) during the ride. My last horse at Cerro Guido (Zorzal) was wonderful, and luckily I had him for the last 3 days. My horse at Tercera Barranca was good too - I would easily have done another day on him. The horses the first day were ok but not the greatest ever. The horses for the 3 days around Serrano were not the most enjoyable to ride; a few were better than others, but generally they were all extremely hard to move. The good thing is that they are totally bomb proof, but having to push and hit to move for 3 days was not the most enjoyable riding.

The riding was great. Good mix of paces, great trails, varied terrain.

The tack was great with all horses and Vicky's added tack was wonderful - great saddlebags, waterproof bag (which we didn't actually need since it didn't rain!), full length chaps for those who wanted. I was glad for my laces that I had brought with me, to tie my jacket at the back of the saddle.


Los Alamos - Spain
Experience Level

Christmas Week

4 star rating   3 January 2019

I am suffering from a hip problem which is made worse when riding narrow horses. Unfortunately the "chunkier" ones like Sarita and India were being used by less experienced riders. I had the lovely Sancho for a few days but he then injured himself in the paddock . So I had Shukran - who I adore. But he is very narrow and caused my hip pain to worsen which meant I couldn't actually ride on Christmas day and had to finish at lunchtime another day. They need another Sarita type please


Los Alamos - Spain
Experience Level

Christmas Week

5 star rating   3 January 2019

The hosts are brilliant. The riding is great, especially for good riders. Plenty of time to chill out, enjoy and take in the day's riding. So far so good, please keep it to competent riders and not beginners please. Thank you all at In the Saddle for all your help, patience and advice over the years.


Horses, Dunes & Nomads - Morocco
Experience Level

Horses, Dunes & Nomads

5 star rating   3 January 2019

The guide selected a perfect match of horse for me and the variety of riding was very good; faster where possibly slower when needed due to the track.


Castle Leslie Estate - Ireland
Experience Level

Riding Programme

5 star rating   27 December 2018

I went for the instruction and it was excellent. I had a combination of flat and jump lessons and the team at the riding centre took the trouble to understand what I was trying to achieve and to tailor my lessons to that. I was lucky enough to have some private lessons which were very educational. I rode a variety of very nice horses and learnt a lot. I had a particularly great cross country session on the last morning which gave me lots of confidence and I've already booked to go again next year.


Alentejo Trails - Portugal
Experience Level

Bottlenose Trail

5 star rating   27 December 2018

All the horses were fantastic and very well schooled. They were all confident and calm, not one put a foot wrong even when presented with many barking dogs in the villages. They were happy and content, always eager to go in the mornings but still very willing at the end of the day. A herd of well cared for horses. Tack was comfortable and in good condition but no saddle bags are provided or cords for tying clothes to the saddle. We ended up tying clothes round our waists which is not ideal.


Los Alamos - Spain
Experience Level

Villa Based Ride

5 star rating   27 December 2018

As always Rachel matched me brilliantly with 2 fantastic horses, Camboria and Vaquero. Speed with sense and breaks perfect!


Pushkar Fair - India
Experience Level

Pushkar Trail (with Ranthambore)

5 star rating   27 December 2018

The riding was well organised and managed. There was plenty of variety in terms of pace, as well as terrain. I really liked the horse I rode, forward going but always felt safe.


Borana - Kenya
Experience Level

Lodge stay

5 star rating   22 December 2018

Very happy and fit horses, so sure footed over varied (some steep descents) terrain. Plenty of stamina to keep going all day. Horses had lots of down time too. Forward going and responsive. Nicholas was an excellent guide, making sure everyone was safe and happy. So much game to see; elephant, zebra, giraffe, buffalo, black and white rhino, lion and cheetah to name the major players. All of these were in good condition and feasting on the lush grass. Great riding, I would definitely go again, despite it being my sixth riding holiday in Africa!


Wait A Little - South Africa
Experience Level

Big Five Safari

5 star rating   20 December 2018

The horses were immaculate from care, tack, living conditions to behavior and suitability for what was required of them.


Rainforest Adventure - Costa Rica
Experience Level

Cerro Lodge RA (only 1st night San Jose)

4 star rating   19 December 2018

The riding is classes as up to 'experienced' but with it mostly being walking through thick 'jungle' and joggling along the road, with one canter on the beach (actually we had 2), even as 'experienced intermediates' we found it ''relaxing'' rather than challenging. The countryside was fascinating and birdlife super.
the extra activities raised the ride classification to 'great fun'


Horizon Lodge - South Africa
Experience Level

Camp Davidson

5 star rating   18 December 2018

With a choice of 90 horses they managed to get it spot on. Rides were split according to capabilities, only once were we held back by a nervous riders, however this is because they were quiet and there was no one else for her to ride with. Good fast paced canters when possible, swimming and game viewing. Some people were given different horses every ride and were satisfied with all of them and others (us included) only rode two different ones throughout the stay which I preferred as get attached very quickly.


African Explorer - Botswana and South Africa
Experience Level

African Explorer

5 star rating   13 December 2018

In these countries (South Africa and Botswana) they don't use "trot". All the horses I had were very good.


Wild Coast - South Africa
Experience Level

Wild Coast Adventure Trail

5 star rating   11 December 2018

Horses were extremely fit and well cared for. Very safe and steady to ride. They were responsive and controllable individually, even on the beach!


Los Alamos - Spain
Experience Level

Villa Based Ride

5 star rating   10 December 2018

Rachel is a veritable magician at matching her variety of "guest-proof," sure-footed, extraordinarily fit set of horses to visitors. Everyone in our group had mounts that perfectly suited not just riding ability but personality, with the result that every single one of us would have taken our horse home in a heartbeat.


Kambaku Safari Lodge - Namibia
Experience Level

Kambaku Safari Lodge 2018

4 star rating   10 December 2018

I was very pleased with my horse, Omandudu, who I rode almost every riding session - he was very responsive and friendly and had a lovely smooth gait. Chris did not get on with the first horse he was allocated (Pockel) but the staff soon chose another horse (Oshaly) who was perfect. Chris was able to ride him for the rest of the stay. The terrain was flat and not very varied as the landscape was the same over the whole reserve and, because of the time of year, everything looked brown and dry. Many of the trees looked dead or had been affected by last year's fire.
However while riding we saw many animals - zebra, giraffes, many different antelope, warthogs and a good number of interesting birds.
The pace of rides was nice and varied with some very long fast canters on winding, sandy tracks - it was especially exhilarating galloping alongside a herd of zebra!
Because it was so hot in the middle of the day (40 degrees plus) the staff were very flexible and arranged the morning ride at 6.30 and the afternoon ride at 5.30pm, at our request.


Horses, Dunes & Nomads - Morocco
Experience Level

Horses, Dunes & Nomads

5 star rating   7 December 2018

Just perfect. Both my horses, Cheb and Bahr, were a joy to ride.


Ant's Lodges - South Africa
Experience Level

Ant's Nest

5 star rating   7 December 2018

All in excellent condition as ever


Quinta do Rol - Portugal
Experience Level

Quinta do Rol

5 star rating   6 December 2018

As a repeat customer of Quinta Do Rol, i come back elated with my vastly improved mastery of equitation. The quality of the horses with their phenomenal care headed up by Pedro never cease to impress.
Highly recommended ! Horses heaven, i just wish it was on my back door.


Atlantis and Green Island Trail - Azores and Portugal
Experience Level

Atlantis Ride

4 star rating   6 December 2018

I asked to keep riding the same horse - and they granted my request. As I had recently been riding Western, they offered me a Western saddle - which I accepted. The last two days had good lengths of trots and canters and were almost all off road. I enjoyed them but the early week was dreary with a lot of road work - which I hate. As I had opted for 17 hours not 24, the junior member of staff on Monday and Tuesday rides treated me like a child/beginner. I am not the world's best rider but I have a lot of experience so this was extremely irritating. I do not need telling how to go up and down slopes multiple times. I do not want an "OK?" after 100m of slow trot.
The tack was beautifully simple and uniform, a snaffle on every horse and not a spare piece of leather anywhere. However, I did find the lack of a saddle bag irritating. I don't own one - and what type would I buy to fit an unknown saddle? It would also take me out of hand luggage travel weight (10kg). There was nowhere to keep my sketch book or paints and nowhere to put a discarded garment or keep a bottle of water. The last two did not matter in winter, but it summer would be important. One of the other riders had fainted with dehydration on a previous visit.
The immaculate appearance of the horses was maintained. When they rolled at lunch, they were groomed before the afternoon remount.


Monte Velho - Portugal
Experience Level

Monte Velho

4 star rating   5 December 2018

I was definitely bottom of the class! but positively showed how much I have to learn. Had a different teacher each day and each did have their own approach/preferences but all was useful. I think they had a lot more they could have taught had I been more advanced


Assam Tea Gardens - India
Experience Level

Heritage Ride

5 star rating   5 December 2018

Lovely forward going horses with really comfortable saddles. The horses were well turnout. We went to the stables too and saw how well kept they were. Good sized clean stables with excellent facilities for the horses


Ant's Lodges - South Africa
Experience Level

Ant's Nest

5 star rating   5 December 2018

The horses were well matched to riders ability, the staff really listened to the sort of mount you preferred and found a horse to suit.

The experience here is all about viewing the game and yet the long canters are an immense amount of fun!


Lesotho Expedition - Lesotho and South Africa
Experience Level

Lesotho Expedition

5 star rating   3 December 2018

Although not big the horses were brillant. I've been on many rides but these horses ability over rough ground is outstanding, sure footed ,willing and very sensible and yet quick when the terrine allows. This was a mixed pace ride, much at walk as you climbed and descended the mountains but then wonderful gallops on the mountain tops where the ground is relatively flat. All this whilst surrounded by amazing scenery.
Saddles also very comfortable and in good condition..


Pushkar Fair - India
Experience Level

Pushkar Trail (with Ranthambore) 9 nights

5 star rating   3 December 2018

Bonnie and Prakash looked after us so well on the rides and Sunaya was amazing in terms of her organisation and support. Their experience, kindness, maturity and customer service the riding was incredibly well organised with regard to safety (traffic) and managing the pace of a large group. The best experience I've had with In The Saddle in terms of consistent care, mindfulness with regards to the customer and professionalism. leadership at it's best.

I'm also hugely grateful to Lucy and the travel team in India for their incredible patience and assistance with my plan changes and late bookings. Thank you so much


1129 reviews    1 2 3 4 36