From a horse continues to be one of the best ways of seeing big game. Most riding safaris are for experienced riders only since you are riding amongst big game at all times – but we have a few which offer magical riding experiences for those who are less horse orientated when at home. Here are our top four recommendations.
Ride Kenya riding safaris
Ride Kenya, based in the Amboseli and Chyulu Hills National Parks, offers mobile riding safaris. With an area extending from the dry lake beds of Amboseli in the east to the majestic Chyulu Hills in the west, the diversity of ecosystems is simply awe-inspiring and with Mount Kilimanjaro as a backdrop, Ride Kenya has found the perfect spot for horse riding safaris. After an exhilarating days ride (for intermediate to advanced riders this is around 4-7 hours or 15-30 miles) your camp awaits you, tents furnished with fine linens and en suite bathrooms surround the central dining area where waiters and camp hands cater to your every need.
David Foot riding safaris
Ride Botswana, offers riding in two distinct areas of Botswana. Camp Kalahari Safaris are exhilarating mobiles, exploring the vast Makgadigadi Saltpans of Botswana’s infamous Kalahari Desert, whilst in contrast Thamalkane River Rides are short, flexible tailor-made safaris based out of Royal Tree Lodge, just outside the small town of Maun. These can be adapted for riders of all abilites and are a particularly good choice for families with children or less confident riders unable to join rides in ‘big game’ areas. For those after even more adventure, either safari can be combined with privately guided canoeing. Accommodation at Camp Kalahari is based in 2 or 3 tented camps, ranging from the main camp with its spacious ensuite tents raised on teak decking, through to an exhilarating night under the stars in the salt pans. Accommodation on Thamalkane rides is based at Royal Tree Lodge with a choice of cottages or walk in safari tents both with en suite and far reaching views over the bush.
Okavango riding safaris
Okavango Horse Safaris started in 1986 and is the first riding safari company in Southern Africa. Owned by husband and wife team, PJ and Barney Bestelink, their aim is to provide the ultimate safari experience. Guests are offered a journey through the diverse landscape of the Okavango Delta and understanding of the ecosystems, flora and fauna of this truly unique area. This safari takes place in a private concession area of over 2500 sq kilometres using three different camps, Guests can expect a small riding group, maximum of 8 although larger group bookings can also be accommodated on request. Between 4-6 hours are spent in the saddle (supported by vehicle) while afternoons can be spent enjoying alternative activities including swimming, game drives, mokoros (traditional dug out canoe) or walking. Accommodation in two of the three camps is offered as luxury safari tents each with private bathroom and dining area whilst the third fly camp, is for the more adventurous traveller, this mobile camp follows the action!
Borana riding safaris
Borana is home to the Dyer family, when they first arrived horses were the only means of transport, today their love of horses remain along with their passionate belief that horseback is still the best way to see the wildlife up close. Borana has three stables catering for all abilities, from the Patent Safety horses perfect for children and the novice rider through to Borana Ranch, where 26 horses suitable for the more experienced rider, are stabled. Eight luxurious cottages make up the accommodation, each secluded cottage offers an ensuite bathroom and private views of the valley below, whilst the dining room and nearby infinity pool offer the perfect place to relax post ride and watch the elephants wandering their well trodden path to the watering hole.