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ICELAND

Riding Holidays in Iceland

Located on the cusp of the Arctic Circle, this mystical island known as the "Land of Ice and Fire" is perfect for a fun adventurous riding holiday. The dramatic topography, fuelled by geothermal energies and ice provides a backdrop of ancient glaciers, volcanoes, black sand beaches, thundering waterfalls, spurting geysers and barren valleys - ideal for a challenging expedition on horseback. Ride small sturdy Icelandic horses, known for their “tölt”, a unique soft gait, perfect for fast riding over long distances.

Experienced riders will adore the thrill of exhilarating riding, typically accompanied by herds of loose horses, testing their mettle with long days in the saddle. Feature rides, assisting local farmers with seasonal horse and sheep round-ups from the highland plateaus, before the long, harsh winter, are particularly popular with advanced riders. In contrast, where better for a complete beginner to delight in taking their first ever short ride, than along the stunning Svarta (black glacial rivers) of northern Skagafjordur. Many trails are suitable for families and less accomplished riders. Facilities along trails are rustic, but enhance the holiday and allow riders a brief glimpse into the traditions, myths and legends of the rural Icelanders, in the land of the Northern Lights and midnight sun.

For those seeking a holiday closer to the lively buzzing atmosphere of capital, Reykjavik, a wealth of riding opportunities exist. From week long family ranch stays offer dressage, western riding and jumping tuition, to equestrian establishments organising short day rides. The energy and atmosphere is palpable in this Nordic Nirvana making it a truly fantastic riding holiday destination.

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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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