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Planning a truly memorable vacation is not an easy task, especially if you want something that is out of the ordinary. However, if you are longing for a day outing or a longer holiday there is one way to get back to nature, enjoy experiences with family and friends and spend time with some of the most magnificent animals on the face of the earth. Equestrian vacations of all varieties are the perfect match for that relaxing getaway for couples, families or groups of friends.
Equestrian Vacation Options Available
Often people assume that all riding vacations are traditional trail ride and camping types of outings. In fact, this couldn’t be further from the truth. Different small and large sized facilities in countries around the world offer a huge range of options to choose from. Most are more than willing to work with you to create the perfect vacation experience for you and your group.
For those that want the traditional multi-day vacation a trail ride is a great idea. You don’t have to be an expert horseperson to participate and, depending on the outfitter, you can choose to stay in luxury types of cabins or other accommodations if tenting isn’t your preference. Just keep in mind that you may need to work up to a multi-day ride if you aren’t a regular rider. A few daily rides and riding tours of shorter duration will quickly get your legs into shape.
Shorter daily rides are great for the entire family. Kids will learn equestrian skills and Mom and Dad can sit back and relax while enjoying the beauty of the great outdoors. There are wonderful riding tours of pristine wilderness areas, historical sites and some of the most beautiful scenery the world has to offer. With well trained horses and expert guides even if this is your first horseback vacation you going to feel right at home in the saddle.
Specialty equestrian vacations are also available that can include more of a dude ranch vacation for that authentic western experience. Beach rides are fun and offer the rider the option of spending time in the surf and sun as well as getting away from it all. For a romantic option or a getaway for you and your friends you really need to consider a horseback winery tour, a very popular option for a day ride in some of the most scenic areas of the country.
Those horse owners that want to bring their own horses will also find equestrian vacations that offer horse accommodations. This can all be arranged prior to your arrival to ensure that everything will be ready based on your specifications.
The Key Factor In Choosing An Equestrian Vacation Facility
Planning and booking your equestrian vacation and riding tours is easier than ever with websites and information online about the facilities available in the area you are interested in. However, it is important to realize that the industry is not formally regulated and there are considerable differences in the quality of both the rides and vacations offered as well as the care of the horses and facilities.
One way to ensure that the company that you hire for your equestrian vacations is going to meet your expectations and provide superior care for their horses and guests is to select a company that is a member of the ETA. The Equestrian Travel Association (ETA) was developed as a voluntary option for businesses that offer riding vacations, horse accommodations and dude ranch vacations to commit to a high level of excellence in horse and customer care wherever they may be located.
The ETA is governed by an Advisory Board made up of members involved in all aspects of the equestrian field. These Advisors support the members of the ETA in their quest to provide the very best possible care for their horses as well as outstanding experiences for their customers in all areas of the industry. All members also agree to adhere to the standards as set forth by the ETA, allowing consumers to plan and book their next equestrian vacation with confidence.
Our handy online Equestrian Travel Guide will help you select the location, duration and type of ride based on the providers operating in your area of interest. All the companies listed in the guide are members of the ETA and provide the same high quality in customer service and care for their animals.
Choosing an ETA member for your next equestrian vacation gives you peace of mind. You will know that the owners care for their horses and also care for their customers, ensuring that the riding tour and vacation you choose will be everything that you dreamed and more.
Meghan Brady, Member Liaison for the Equestrian Travel Association, communicating with all association members, while creating awareness for the equestrian travel industry by communicating with the public, travel agents and the media.