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Ride truly English

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    12-29-2011, 07:52 PM
Originally Posted by waresbear    
I am sure it's a great place Barry, however when I travel I only go to places with oceans, beaches, palm trees & resorts. Yes, I rode a horse in the ocean on the same beach Bo Derek frollicked in movie 10.
Look, palm trees and an ocean. You don't need to know what lattitude it's at.

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    12-29-2011, 07:53 PM
Of course when you landed at Heathrow - we could all meet up, we could change our minds and catch a plane to Marbella, where the water is blue and warm, the beaches are deserted and the horses are ANdalucians
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    12-29-2011, 07:54 PM
Ice has usually just come off the lakes here in April. I would bet the temp is way below 60. Here me, who absolutely abhors the cold, living an area with a harsh winter, dang I need to try with someone.....
    12-29-2011, 07:55 PM
Ok I am game for that Marbella.....sign me up!
    12-29-2011, 10:43 PM
Barry, for years I have had my heart set on a riding trip somewhere in the UK... until you posted that thread awhile back about the fabulous riding in Spain!
Maybe you can do me a favour. I have also dreamed of going to Greece. Can you go there and ride, then report back here with pics? Help me decide! Lol
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    12-30-2011, 10:42 AM
Certainly I can recommend riding at a carefully selected riding centre in either the UK or Spain - but why Greece? You must have a reason.

If I personally do a horse holiday again it would be to Portugal to find a Lusitano stallion for my Irish Draft mare.
Or maybe I might look for somewhere to stay and ride down in the south of France.
Then there is Italy where they have some superb Italian horse breeds and Lippizer is just across the border.

In Germany they might teach me some dressage - although they would probably put me in the kindergarten class and shout at a mere Englishman.

Or in Holland, where every Dutch person speaks English but they all do dressage

Or one might be adventurous and ask a couple of the members of this forum as to where to go in Lithuania or Poland, where there are very strong horsey culture as indeed there is in Russia.

But Greece? Xenophon is long dead.
Mind you Greece would be a good place to go scuba diving;
Mmm- and it will be cheap in view of the Euro crisis;
Mmm- the sun will shine;
Mmm- the sea is blue;
On the other hand anyone who calls Retsina a wine must live on another planet; and they smother tasty British lamb with lemon juice; and the men dance together with their hands in the air. I am simply not sure about Greece.

Remember to go on a riding holiday, on an unknown horse, in a foreign country, with an organisation blessed with varying managment skills and certainly differing traditions regarding horses, calls for significant confidence on the part of the visiting rider. On the first day, they present you with a horse which you have to ride out even if you are a little nervous about the way it is waving its tail about, snorting and slobbering.

Mmm - Maybe I should write an article about trying to make sure you find the right riding establishment.
    12-30-2011, 10:51 AM
You'll be asked who is Bo Dereck?

Anyway we horse lovers will be looking at the horses, the stallions, the pretty mares and the occasional topless sun bather lying on the beach.
    12-30-2011, 11:43 AM
Thanks Barry!
The desire to go to Greece is purely a whim, based on the sun and blue waters I have seen via my television. Nothing to do with horses in particular.
Living in Canada, it is difficult to find people who are well versed in the finer points of European destinations.
Until such time as I am ready to embark on a major vacation, (prob 5 to 8 yrs), I will keep my eyes and ears open for ideas.
    12-30-2011, 12:18 PM
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Actually you can ride in Greece, I have read of a lady who trekked on Halflingers there, fell in love with them and now has quite a few and breeds them - all following on from that one trip. Sadly I have no idea where, but she has a website so one could find out and ask.
    12-30-2011, 01:00 PM
Perhaps I can help you fantasize. As far as that photo is concerned:

The beach is close by Cape Trafalgar. Andalucia
The sea is virtually the very edge of the Atlantic Ocean.
The month was November - it was still warm during the day but the rains would be coming soon.
The beach was deserted except for a few walkers.
There were eight visiting riders, each riding spirited well schooled Andalusians
The saddles were English cut, Spanish made.
The horse you see was young - just five and schooled English but broken to saddle and bit by a Spaniard.
We had just roared up the beach full tilt at the gallop one way and I was on the way back.
We were led by a very competent Welsh female rider - backed up by her equally competent sister. Each guide had years of experience leading groups of riders. Both could cope with the needs of the less experienced rider and the tear away - of which, I must confess, I was one.
The accommodation was in chalets located in a village on the edge of a woodland nature reserve.
The food was home cooked dinners - predominantly Spanish cuisine.
Lunches were in local bistros; breakfasts were self service.
Wine was ad lib and free.
There was an outdoor pool.
All of the group of 8 riders were competent and 4 at least were repeat visitors.

Noone fell off, all took part in every outing. Everyone seemed to enjoy themselves. Riders could choose their own style of riding - classical, hunter, forward, or rural Spanish classical (if they knew how).
It was the last day of the weeks holiday and next day I was to be driven back up the coast to the airport.

Riders groomed and tacked up their own horse, which was theirs for the week - unless rider and horse proved to be incompatible.
Riding was a gentle 3-4 hours per day + lunchtime. Not too much riding.

I went back three times - it was virtually the same programme each time but the week was always enjoyable.

But what topped everything was the opportunity to ride a fit, well schooled, Andalucian gelding - a somewhat special type of horse.
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