8 Day Costa Rica Horseback Riding Vacation

horseback riding vacation in costa rica

8 Day Costa Rica Horseback Riding Vacation – Trails of the Campesinos

Costa Rica horseback riding vacation! For the horse lover Horse Trek Monteverde offers a great way of seeing Costa Rica by horseback. A full 8 day, 7 night horseback riding vacation tour. With full six days on horseback experiencing the back country and equestrian culture of Costa Rica. Covering diverse regions and aspects of Costa Rican horse culture, the trip spans Monteverde, Guanacaste and Arenal.  Riders will see cloud forest, waterfalls, nature reserves, working farms and ranches, wildlife habitats, volcanoes, hot springs and lakes. There’s something for everyone!

Day 1 – San Jose to Monteverde

Your Costa Rica horseback riding vacation begins with a pick-up in Costa Rica’s capital of San Jose or from Liberia Airport with private transport pre-arranged (included in the package). Depending on your time of arrival you’ll either journey on directly to Monteverde or stay in San Jose at a hotel close to the airport to rest up before setting out first thing in the morning.

Day 2 – Introduction to Monteverde

Those not yet in Monteverde will spend the morning in transport with the opportunity to see some of the Costa Rican countryside. Travellers who journeyed to Monteverde on Day 1 will have their morning free to explore in Santa Elena or you can let us arrange a canopy tour, guided hike in the cloud forest, zip lining or any one of the other exciting trips available.

horseback riding vacation in monteverdeDay 2 (afternoon) You will be picked up by Marvin or taxi and taken to our rustic stable to be introduced to the horses, before we head out on our introductory afternoon horseback ride. The afternoon ride is about 3-4 hours and your guide will lead you down quiet back roads and locally used trails giving you a sense of rural Costa Rican life. You’ll pass coffee, banana and sugar plantations and you may even spot a sloth or a toucan.

The horseback riding vacation includes a stop at Horse Trek Monteverde’s home where our own Marvin Anchia will introduce you to some of our young horses in training, one or two or Paso-finos. The Paso is an ancient breed of gaited horse whose ancestors came to the Americas with the conquistadors; their unique gaits made for a smoother ride during long hours in the saddle and the opportunity to see one in person and learn about the unique training methodologies used with this ancient breed is a once in a lifetime experience for most guests.

Once the ride has concluded, we’ll transfer you back to your hotel for an evening’s rest. We use the Hotel Rustic Lodge or Monteverde Villa Lodge in Monteverde unless otherwise specified; the hotels offer comfortable, rustic style accommodation. Both are situated 5 minutes walking distances from the small commercial center of Santa Elena (with its many restaurants, shops and banks), the hotels offer the kind of personal care and attention you can only receive at small, locally owned facilities.

Day 3 – Full Day Ride of the Countryside and Crossing the Continental Divide

This full day horse ride experience to take you around the beautiful countryside of Monteverde and surrounding villages. You will be able to see the forests of Monteverde in the distance and have world class views of the waters of the Gulf of Nicoya, sparkling in the distance.  At one point we will ride along the Continental Divide, between the Pacific Ocean and Caribbean Sea, where the Atlantic and Pacific slopes meet (a continental divide is a drainage divide, where one side of the divide feeds into one ocean or sea, and other side either feeds into a different ocean). We will stop for lunch at a local lodge.

Having eaten and rested we’ll continue the horseback ride by a different route to get to your accommodations for the evening; the peaceful Cabinas Belcruz.

Cabinas Belcruz is a locally owned Bed and Breakfast style accommodation with views out over the countryside. The owners prepare home cooked fare and will happily share information about local traditions and customs.

Day 4 – All Day Cowboy River Ride

8 day horse trekking vacation in costa ricaThis full day excursion takes you down along the Horse Trek Monteverde Ranch’s river where with luck, you will hear the monkeys call in the trees and the forest feels alive with birdsong. After two and a half hours of horseback riding you’ll arrive at a clearing at the river’s edge where your guide will provide a delicious homemade picnic lunch. Riders are welcome to take a swim in the small refreshing pools or sit quietly and spot birds or wildlife. After a midday break we’ll ride on further along the river before turning off and taking a different route back to the ranch and your accommodations.

Day 5 – Monteverde to Solania

8 day horse riding vacations in monteverdeBack roads and narrow trails off the beaten path will take us from Monteverde through Campos de Oro to Solania. The trails are steep and challenging and we’ll be pausing frequently to rest the horses and take in the views. The trails we use are those used by the local population as they travel from place to place and we’ll pass many on horseback exchanging greetings. At lunch time your guide will lead you to a typical Costa Rican family house where you’ll enjoy an authentic home cooked meal and your guide Marvin will tell you more about the culture and cuisine of the region. The area around Campos de Oro is famous for its coffee and the name likely has more to do with hopeful colonists than any significant gold deposits in the area! Rested, with muscles stretched you’ll mount up for the remaining horse trek to Solania.

Having reached our destination, Solania in Guanacaste province, we’ll make our way to the accommodations pre-arranged on a working cattle ranch. This is where we’ll be staying for 2 days. while we explore the region and see yet another facet of Costa Rican life. The ranch boasts several private villas; they are lovely, large villas with kitchens, cable TV, air conditioning, sitting rooms and garden verandas to enjoy your downtime. The ranch boasts beautiful tropical gardens and features a pool and a jacuzzi tub to soak those tired muscles.

Day 6 – Riding through Costa Rican Cowboy Country

best costa rica horse riding vacationYour guide, Marvin, will lead you on a ride through the country around the ranch. The landscape and types of agriculture of this region are different than what you’d have seen in Monteverde and Marvin will point out differences while explaining some of the factors that create them. Your ride will take you along back roads and down a trail to a waterfall. You’ll have the opportunity to see several local ranches and you’ll likely see some of the area’s famous cowboys going about day to day ranch business.

Day 7 – Solania to El Dos and on to La Fortuna and Arenal

Your horseback ride starts early and will take you through several nearby villages where you can watch the countryside waking up for the day. After 4 or 5 hours you will reach El Dos. It’s here you’ll say goodbye to the horse who has served you so well over the last few days of exploration. Once you’ve said your goodbyes you’ll climb in the van for the short trip to the shores of Lake Arenal where our boat waits to ferry us across.

monteverde and costa rica holiday

The 30 minute boat ride is beautiful with the majestic Arenal Volcano providing a backdrop for the shining lake waters flanked by dense forest. On the other side another car shuttle awaits to take us near La Fortuna where accommodations at a comfortable ecolodge await. You’ll have some time to settle in before the car returns at 6:00pm to transport you to the world famous Arenal Hot Springs where you can soak away any aches from the last few days of adventure.

Day 8 – Exploring Arenal

The morning is free to enjoy any of the optional activities the region offers. We can help you arrange canyoneering, cycling, a tour to explore the volcano, or a half day of white-water rafting as examples. At 1:30 pm your shuttle to San Jose will arrive, or if you’ve made arrangements for a beach extension or alternate transport we’ll have those providers waiting to guide you to your next stop.

Suitable for: Experienced riders ages 15 and up. Riders with a maximum weight of 200 pounds.

Costa Rica Horseback Riding Vacation Includes: 6 days horseback riding, 7 night accommodations, all breakfasts, most lunches and evening meals (except on arrival and departure days and day 2), transport, luggage transfers, entrance fess to the hot springs, services of experienced local guides and all tours contained within the itinerary except those activities described as optional.

Pricing: The tour is $1595 USD per person (with min of 4) or $1695 per person if just 2 or 3 people going with an available single supplement of $250. The trip requires a minimum of two participants and a maximum of 6 to 8.

Costa Rica Horseback Riding Vacation scheduled dates:

Year 2020

Example of good start dates: 8 Feb, 15 Feb, 22 Feb,  29 Feb, 7 March, 14 March, 21 March, 28 March, 04 April, 11 April, 18 April, 25 April, 04 July, 11 July, 18 July, 25 July, 01 August, 8 August 2020

Dates are flexible, let us know when you would like to start and we will do our best to accommodate you (but we do not normally run our 8 day tours during Sept, Oct, Nov, Dec or January)

Optional Additions: In addition to the optional activities throughout the trip like those in Arenal where you can arrange for special activities, we can also arrange for beach extensions. Please speak to us about any arrangements you would like made for you.

***Please Note*** Riders on this tour must have travel insurance that includes horse riding. Horse trek Monteverde will require your policy number and policy details to be sent to us before you can begin your trek.

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