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GEORGIA

Home of the iconic Caucasus Mountains and sun-drenched Black Sea beaches, Georgia has a colourful and elaborate history resulting in vast cave cities, abandoned monasteries and ancient cathedrals, offering a blank canvas for a stunning riding adventure. Discover an unspoilt domain of rolling green valleys, fertile vineyards, alpine meadows and ancient forests, much of which is only accessible to hardy hikers, or from horseback. Mobile trails in the north-east, take you deep into the heart of the Tusheti region, where wild-flowers flank steep hillsides.

Ride small sure-footed Tushin Mountain horses over undulating grassy plains and revel in the challenge of negotiating narrow paths and steeps slopes, shadowed by the majestic snow-capped peaks of the Caucasus Mountains. Much of the riding is at a leisurely pace, as groups are often accompanied by pack horses and the terrain is rugged and craggy, but there are also occasional opportunities for short trots and canters. Circular trails lead high into the hills, past summer shepherd encampments and friendly villages, with overnight stays in the homes of locals, or under canvas. These challenging endurance rides are well “off the beaten track”, with long hours in the saddle and very limited facilities but the tranquillity and stunning scenery by far outweigh the lack of amenities.

In the south, day rides and longer camp trips are available in the mountains surrounding capital Tbilisi. Alternatively, for Coastal Trails and beach riding, head to the Black Sea resorts of the west, such as popular Batumi, where centres provide lessons and hacks for all levels and abilities. Georgia is a truly unrivalled destination for an adventurous riding holiday, in much sought after seclusion.

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“We had a lovely week here. The riding was great and it was good to be in a quiet rural area, away from the touristy areas.”
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