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These rides are south of the region of Castile and León, some 170 kilometres from Madrid, where the granite rocks of the Sierra de Gredos mountains lie.
The Castles of the Gredos Mountains, Gredos to Salamanca Ride, and the Four Valleys ride, are all trail rides where you can expect to stay at multiple accommodations. However, the Crystalline Waters of Gredos ride is a centre based option where all six nights are spent at the same hotel.
Ávila, in Castile and León, is the location of these trails. Lakes, gorges, crags, meadows, fountains, rivers like the Tormes with its crystalline waters, and walls of stone, all form part of the Sierra de Gredos Mountains, whose highest peak is Almanzor, at 2,592 metres.
Long hours in the saddle allow you to explore this remote location and journey through the mountain passes. The riding is through very varied scenery; from pine, oak, chestnut and birch forests in the Gredos Mountains, stream and river crossings in the valleys, and climbing high up the hillsides along rocky uplands, taking in the clean air and stunning views. Along the way you come across remote villages, with stone-built houses and streets.
The main advantage of the Gredos climate, from the outdoor enthusiast’s standpoint, is that overall, it is sunnier and drier than other Spanish ranges such as the Pyrenees, and this means that you can enjoy outdoor activities such as riding in some parts of the Gredos at almost any time of the year.
All the trails are personally guided by the experienced owner Emilio Rodriguez. Emilio is a quiet man and an expert rider and has a special ability to relate well to his horses leading to even tempered, confident and well-mannered horses that are a pleasure to ride and be around. At the front he quietly guides you each day, allowing you the chance to breathe the air, listen to the birdlife and take in the wonderful scenery you pass through.
You could be riding for between four to seven hours a day and so it is important to be as riding fit as possible. If the guide believes that you are not safe on the horse then you may have to go in the support vehicle.
On most days you may get the opportunity to enjoy some trots and canters (terrain permitting). You should be competent at walk, trot and canter outdoors in a group environment.
The horses are an excellent mix of Hispano-Arab, Spanish, Andalucian PRE and Andalucian crosses ranging in height from 15 to 16.2 hands. They are happy, loved and comfortable to ride, with an enthusiastic walk and an easy collected canter.
They are all ridden in comfortable English GP saddles and bridles. Seat savers and saddle bags are also available. Some of the horse are ridden in bitless bridles.
You may be responsible for feeding, grooming, and tacking up your own horse each day (both first thing in the morning and after the long riding day too) and help and guidance is on hand should you require it.
The accommodation along the way varies from simple, clean and comfortable hostels and mountain guesthouses, to small hotels in towns and villages. All rooms have private bathrooms except for one night on the Gredos to Salamanca ride where you stay in a chapel, and then you might have to share a bathroom.
Single rooms are possible on request and there is a single supplement payable.
The food in here in Spain will be a highlight of your trip and Mamen will delight you with surprise Tapas breaks consisting of olives, nuts, Iberian ham and the cheese of La Mancha.
Lunchtime is a leisurely and social affair with simple home cooked Spanish dishes such as Paella or Tortilla offered, followed by a siesta in the sunshine. As is the Spanish way dinner is late at c. 9pm with a selection of different Spanish dishes.
|Holiday||Experience LevelExp Lvl||Arrive - DepartArr - Dep||Price||Itinerary||Availability|
|Castles of the Gredos Mountains||15 Oct 2023 - 21 Oct 2023||6 nights 6 ngts||$1,753.92||Full|
|Castles of the Gredos Mountains||22 Oct 2023 - 28 Oct 2023||6 nights 6 ngts||$1,753.92||Book|
|Crystalline Waters of Gredos||12 Nov 2023 - 18 Nov 2023||6 nights 6 ngts||$1,642.92||Book|
|Crystalline Waters of Gredos||19 Nov 2023 - 25 Nov 2023||6 nights 6 ngts||$1,642.92||Book|
|Four Valleys||26 Nov 2023 - 2 Dec 2023||6 nights 6 ngts||$1,715.07||Book|
|Castles of the Gredos Mountains||26 May 2024 - 1 Jun 2024||6 nights 6 ngts||$1,987.04||Book|
|Castles of the Gredos Mountains||2 Jun 2024 - 8 Jun 2024||6 nights 6 ngts||$1,987.04||Book|
|Gredos to Salamanca Ride||9 Jun 2024 - 15 Jun 2024||6 nights 6 ngts||$2,098.05||Book|
|Crystalline Waters of Gredos||7 Jul 2024 - 13 Jul 2024||6 nights 6 ngts||$1,953.74||Book|
|Crystalline Waters of Gredos||14 Jul 2024 - 20 Jul 2024||6 nights 6 ngts||$1,953.74||Book|
|Castles of the Gredos Mountains||21 Jul 2024 - 27 Jul 2024||6 nights 6 ngts||$1,987.04||Book|
|Crystalline Waters of Gredos||4 Aug 2024 - 10 Aug 2024||6 nights 6 ngts||$1,953.74||Book|
|Castles of the Gredos Mountains||18 Aug 2024 - 24 Aug 2024||6 nights 6 ngts||$1,987.04||Book|
|Castles of the Gredos Mountains||8 Sep 2024 - 14 Sep 2024||6 nights 6 ngts||$1,987.04||Book|
|Gredos to Salamanca Ride||15 Sep 2024 - 21 Sep 2024||6 nights 6 ngts||$2,098.05||Book|
|Castles of the Gredos Mountains||22 Sep 2024 - 28 Sep 2024||6 nights 6 ngts||$1,987.04||Book|
|Gredos to Salamanca Ride||6 Oct 2024 - 12 Oct 2024||6 nights 6 ngts||$2,098.05||Book|
|Castles of the Gredos Mountains||13 Oct 2024 - 19 Oct 2024||6 nights 6 ngts||$1,987.04||Book|
|Castles of the Gredos Mountains||20 Oct 2024 - 26 Oct 2024||6 nights 6 ngts||$1,987.04||Book|
|Gredos to Salamanca Ride||27 Oct 2024 - 2 Nov 2024||6 nights 6 ngts||$2,098.05||Book|
|Gredos to Salamanca Ride||17 Nov 2024 - 23 Nov 2024||6 nights 6 ngts||$2,098.05||Book|
|Four Valleys||24 Nov 2024 - 30 Nov 2024||6 nights 6 ngts||$1,987.04||Book|
INCLUDES Accommodation; full board (including wine with meals); airport transfers at a set time from Madrid airport.
SINGLE SUPPLEMENT The single supplement is always payable but it is refunded if you are willing to share and we can find you a sharer for you. Single room requests are subject to availability and not guaranteed. The single supplements are as follows:
$185.02 for Castles of the Gredos Mountains; Crystalline Waters of Gredos and Four Valleys.
$215.84 for Castles of the Gredos (long) and Gredos to Salamanca Ride.
$222.02 for Castles of the Gredos Mountains; Crystalline Waters of Gredos and Four Valleys.
$259.01 for Gredos to Salamanca Ride.
SMALL GROUP SUPPLEMENT
The progressive trail rides require a minimum of three people to run. If there are less than three people confirmed, the itinerary will be changed to the Crystalline Waters of Gredos or similar (mainly centre based with a mini trail).
In addition, if any week ends up with just two or three people a small group supplement is payable locally and costs:
€100 per person if two people in the group (€150 in 2024)
€70 per person if three people in the group (€100 in 2024)
PAYABLE LOCALLY Entrance fees to Museums and Monuments; drinks/snacks in bars; alcoholic beverages and soft drinks; tips (c. €35 - €50); small group supplements.
NEAREST AIRPORT Madrid.
TRANSFERS Shared transfers (set time only) are included from Madrid airport. If you cannot meet these shared transfer times taxis can be arranged at an additional cost (payable locally).
The meeting point is in Madrid Airport at 15:00 and so your flight should be scheduled to arrive before 14:00.
You will be transferred to your first night's accommodation.
The transfer back to the airport will arrive at Madrid Airport at about 12:00 so flights should depart after 14:00.
The Sierra de Gredos are around two hours west of Madrid.
The climate in this region of Spain is continental with hot, dry summers and mild winters.
For anyone who would like to see and experience rural Spain, on beautiful horses, with wonderful hosts and hospitality, this is the holiday for you!
FionaOverall rating: 5/5