Irish Culture & Scenery

On this horseback holiday, you will be riding and exploring the sights along the North Coast of Ireland. In the mornings you will enjoy trail rides along unique backdrops and endless beaches. After a few splashy trots and canters, you will trade the boots for walking shoes and explore different sightseeing locations. From the Titanic Centre, to the Glens of Antrim and even the Rathlin Island– you will visit them all!
A true Irish holiday wouldn’t be complete without also having a fair share of stops in local pubs which you will be able to visit every other evening. This riding holiday is ideal for intermediate riders who are enthusiastic about history and local heritage.
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Centre based holidays
6 days (5 days riding)
From £2,780
Open to non-riders

Itinerary

Highlights

- Ride along endless beaches and enjoy splashy trots and canters!
- Explore Rathlin Island and enjoy its quaint atmosphere.
- Visit the Titanic Centre and learn about all the facts that surround this tragic event.
- Ride in different Game of Thrones backdrops.
  • Day 1 1: Home – Dublin airport – Ballycastle - No riding

    Fly to Dublin airport. Flights are not included but can be arranged upon request.

    You will be transferred from the airport to the accommodation (not included, see “dates and prices”) or we can you arrange public transport to the starting point of the ride. The rest of the day will be spent at leisure. You may stay and relax in your room, or go on a walk to get acquainted with your surroundings.

    Overnight at the B&B.

    Please note that dinner is not included.
  • Day 2 2: North Antrim Hills & Titanic Centre - Approx. 4/5 hours riding

    After breakfast, you be transferred to the stables where the local team will welcome you and give you a full tour of the premises. After choosing your horse and undergoing a brief riding assessment, you will set off on your first adventure. Today you will be riding out into the wilderness of the North Antrim Hills, and enjoying the landscapes of the Irish countryside. After riding through old peat banks, you will make your way to the stables where you will leave the horses and depart for lunch. In the afternoon, you will set off to visit the Titanic Centre in Belfast.

    Transfer to the B&B and freshen-up before heading to town to have dinner.

    Please note that dinner is not included.
  • Day 3 3: Ballintoy & Whitepark Bay - Approx. 6/7 hours riding

    Today you will follow the amazing views of the seaside, which will lead you to the Whitepark Bay beach. The white sand invites you to trot, or canter along the shoreline and you may even dip your feet in the ocean. After a peaceful morning spent at the beach, your guide will collect you and take you to have lunch at a local establishment. In the afternoon, the sightseeing continues with the Giants Causeway and Dunluce Castle, Dark Hedges and other sites, some of which were backdrops for Game of Thrones episodes.

    Transfer to the accommodation.

    Please note that dinner is not included.
  • Day 4 4: Loughareema & Rathlin Island - Approx. 6/7 hours riding

    Today you will ride in expansive lands, often taken over by swirling mists until reaching Loughareema. This area, also known as Vanishing lake, is surrounded by Irish myths and legends. After hearing a few stories about this location, you will make your way towards the McBride family farm. Follow the Carey river until the edge of the Glen of Glendun, one of the nine Glens of Antrim.
    After exploring the historic route, you will head to the harbour town at the mouth of the Glendun, another of Antrim’s 9 Glens.
    At this time, the riding will come to an end and you will be taken to visit the peaceful Rathlin Island. This island hosts a big bird sanctuary and, if you are lucky enough, you may even spot killer whales or dolphins off the coast.

    Transfer to accommodation.

    Please note that dinner is not included
  • Day 5 5: Waterfoot & Glenarm - Approx. 4/5h riding

    Today you will start your riding day at the beach near the village of Waterfoot. After some splashy canters and trots, you will make your way through the “Queen of the Glens” until you reach the Glenariff waterfalls. Athe head of the Glen, you will dismount and untack the horses at the Lara lodge restaurant. After getting up close to the waterfalls, you will return to the restaurant to have lunch.

    In the afternoon, you will depart on a sightseeing tour of the Glens of Antrim. You will take a trip to the harbour village of Glenarm where you will find the ancestral home of the McDonnel family, Earls of Antrim. You may also want to take the opportunity to look into Steensons jewellers, whose pieces where worn by actors featuring on the Game of Thrones series. After this stop, you will go by the villages of Cushendall and Cushendun before journeying onto Torr Head. Explore the Murlough bay before heading back to the accommodation.

    Please note that dinner is not included.
  • Day 6 6: Whiterocks Beach – Dunluce Castle – Dublin Airport - Approx. 4/5h riding

    After breakfast, you will begin the day in the quaint town of Ballycastle. The horses will be unloaded near the Ould Lammus Fair and from here you will ride towards the Margy river. Enjoy some splashy trots and canters along the white sand before making your way to Fairhead – an imposing basalt rock headland.
    You will explore this location further and then start your way back. If you are lucky, you will be able to spot some seals and other marine life. Back at the Margy river, you will cross it to admire the Silver Swans sculpture.
    After lunch, you will be picked up by one of the drivers and depart on your last afternoon tour. Today you will be taken to the city of Derry, known for its walls and history. Enjoy a tour of the city and learn about its 400-year-old walls and other local facts.

    Transfer to the accommodation and then the airport (transfers to the airport are not included, please check the “Dates&Prices” tab).

Dates & prices

Price details

- Flights or transportation to your destination (international/domestic) are not included, but can be booked on request - please contact us for rates.

- Groups are composed of a minimum of 4 riders and a maximum of 10 international riders, plus guides. The ride may go ahead with 2/3 riders upon the payment of a supplement - €650/£560/$720 per person.

- Rates are per person sharing a double room. Single rooms can be arranged upon request for an extra €305/£350/$335
There are upgrades available to both 3* hotels, or 4* hotels and spas, please enquire to know more.

- Transfers from/to Dublin airport are not included but can be arranged upon request for an extra €770/£680/$850, per car (4pax), return rate.
- Transfers from/to Belfast airports are also possible for an extra €125/£280/$125, per car (4pax), return rate.
There are other ways of getting to the North Coast (bus/train), please enquire to know more.

- Non-riders are welcomed and have a special discounted rate of £230 per day (includes accommodation, transfers to ride locations so they can be explored by foot, breakfast and lunch).
Extra activities are available - Yacht tour, golf courses, fly fisinhing, SPA treatments, Whiskey tour - please contact us for detailed rates.

- Accompanied young riders are welcome from 7 yo, provided they match the riding requirements.

Rider weight limit is 95kg/15 st/209 lbs. If you are over this limit, please contact us.
Please Note
The itinerary may be modified at anytime for security reasons, meteorological or events beyond our control such as blocked roads, rivers in flood, drought, strikes and local holidays. Equus Journeys, our local partners and their local guides will always strive to find the best solution and will alter the itinerary as needed.
The names of the hotels and accommodation are given for information only and depending on availability, they may be modified without notice and replaced by another of a similar standard.

Price includes

Support Team

1 English-speaking horse guide

Accommodation

Double room - Bed and Breakfast

Meals

Breakfasts abd lunches from day 2 to day 6 (excl. dinners)

Additional equipment

Saddle bags

Extras

Trip to Rathlin Island

Price doesn't include

Meals

Dinners

Transport

Return airport transfers
International flights

Extras

Tips to the local team
Small group supplement - see above for the details

Insurance

Cancellation and travel insurance are not included in the above listed price. Please note that insurance is mandatory. We recommend taking out an insurance policy as soon as your trip is booked to cover you in case of cancellation

Optional

Accommodation

Single room supplement
Accommodation upgrades - 3* hotels, or 4* hotels & spas
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    19/05/2024 24/05/2024 £2,780 €3,197 $3,447
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    07/07/2024 12/07/2024 £2,780 €3,197 $3,447
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    03/11/2024 08/11/2024 £2,780 €3,197 $3,447
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    10/11/2024 15/11/2024 £2,780 €3,197 $3,447
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Equestrian info

Horses

There are around 60 horses available on this riding holiday. They are a mix of Irish Cobs, Irish Drafts, Sport Horses and Connemara’s. All horses have a good temperament and are both fit and surefooted.

There are both horses and ponies available, ranging from 12hh to 16.2hh.

Guide & local team

The local guides are experienced and professional. They are very familiar with all the trails and take great care of the horses and guests.

Please note that all guides have first aid training.

Minimum riding ability

Minimum riding ability

To take part in this holiday, you must be an intermediate rider or above. You are able to walk, trot and canter comfortably and also mount/dismount with the help of a mounting block.

Rider weight limit is 95kg/15 st/209 lbs

Pace

There will be walking, trotting and cantering – especially at the beach.

Tacking ability and participation

You are very welcome to help groom and tack/untack the horses during the trail ride.

Trip conditions and Requested experience

You should be comfortable at all three paces.
The terrain is diverse, but mainly smooth and pleasant, giving you the opportunity to ride free from strain and enjoy the scenery.

Equestrian equipment

English tack. Saddlebags are provided.

Please note that during the riding periods, the use of a helmet is mandatory (if necessary, the local team will provide each rider with one).

Travel info

Comfort

On this riding holiday, you will be staying in B&Bs. The selected B&Bs are based on quality guest house style accommodation in coastal locations. They are all owned by local families.

There are upgrades available to both 3* hotels, or 4* hotels and spas, please enquire to know more.

Meals

Breakfast will consist of traditional full Irish Breakfasts, alongside cereals and continental options. Lunch is a mixture of picnics (sandwiches, crisps, fruit, scones, tea, coffee) and meals in local restaurants. Please note that dinners are not included.

Special dietary requirements can be catered for, please let us know at the time of booking.

Climate

In Spring the temperatures range from 8-12c. April is particularly pleasant. In summer (May-July) the highest average temperatures are 18-20c, whilst in Autumn (Aug - Oct) the temperatures range from 14-18c. September is considered to be mild and temperate. The coldest months are January and February and sometimes temperatures drop below zero. Snow is rare, but there can be heavy rainfall at any time of year.

Tips

Tipping is not compulsory but will be very much appreciated if you enjoy the services provided by the team.

Packing list

Head
- A riding helmet is mandatory. Helmet makers (GPA, HKM, LAS Helmets, Lamicell, Troxel, Equithème) now offer horse-riding helmets that are ventilated, strong, light and comfortable.
- Sunhat: cap for when not riding
- Sunglasses - with a cord attached so they don't fly off when riding
- Buff or bandana for protecting your neck and face from the sun and dust

Upper Body
- Thermals in case of cold weather (long or short-sleeved T-shirts)
- Short or long-sleeved cotton shirts (to provide protection from the sun) or T-shirt in a quick-drying material
- Lightweight fleece or jumper
- Warm polar fleece or equivalent (plus a spare in case one gets wet)
- Warm Goretex-style jacket (water-proof and breathable)

Legs
- 2 pairs of jodhpurs or long leather trousers
- 1 change of trousers (riding trousers or jeans)
- 1 pair of waterproof over trousers)
- A swim suit may be useful (if upgrading accommodation)
- Cotton or synthetic underwear (non-irritant)

Hands and feet
- 1 pair Comfortable riding boots. We recommend short boots with half chaps but you may wish to take long chaps or long boots.
- 1 pair of sandals
- Lightweight shoes or trainers for the evenings
- Several pairs of socks
- Gloves - your hands are particularly exposed to the sun, wind or rain whilst riding

Other useful items
- Small bumbag to be worn whilst riding
- A soothing cream may be useful to treat areas irritated by long hours in the saddle
- Backpacks are not to be worn whilst riding. Everything should be kept either in pockets or in a bumbag : lip balm, sun screen, small camera, glasses, rope etc.
- Water bottle (1.5 litres or 2 equivalent)
- Toiletries
- Swiss army knife or equivalent (in checking-in luggage!!)
- Small plastic bags for you rubbish
- Ear plugs (may be useful)
- Camera and high capacity memory card. Spare battery

Medical kit
- Sunscreen and lip balm - should be high factor
- Insect repellent
- Any medication you regularly take
- Vitamin C tablets
- Blister plasters in case of any rubs
- Antiseptic cream, plasters, aspirin, anti-histamine, insect-bite salve etc..
- 10cm wide bandage
- Painkillers
- Spare prescription glasses/contact lenses
- Eye drops
- Imodium or similar anti-diarrhoea medication
- Re-hydration sachets
- Antiseptic wipes
- Handwash gel

General information
- We recommend taking a copy of your passport and insurance documents with you in case you lose your originals
- In your hand luggage carry any valuables, such as your camera, ipod, ipad etc.
- Travelling in your riding boots and carrying your hat and some riding clothes is highly recommended - then if your luggage goes astray you are still able to ride

Our Recommendations
- Backpacks cannot be worn whilst riding. We recommend a small bumbag or a coat with pockets so that you can carry small items with you during the day (passport, camera, sunscreen, lipbalm etc)
- We recommend travelling in your riding boots and carrying your hat and some riding clothes in your hand luggage - then if your luggage goes astray you are still able to ride!
- We recommend taking a copy of your passport and insurance documents with you in case you lose your originals

Sustainable tourism

  1. Travel light. It's a little known fact, but the lighter you pack, the better for the environment as heavy bags will produce higher emissions (when flying a plane or driving a car!).
  2. Reduce plastic waste. Take your favorite reusable bottle with you. Avoid single-use bags, cups, or straws.
  3. Preserve nature. Always take your rubbish with you during the ride and recycle them. Leave all the flowers or plants as you found them, and never get too close when observing wildlife. Make sure to use eco-friendly products such as body wash or laundry detergent (if camping) to protect both your skin and the environment.
  4. Choose your experiences carefully. Respect animal life by not participating in any activities that abuse wild animals (shows, elephant rides, etc.).
  5. Support local populations. Buy local handicrafts, be respectful of customs, and learn about the culture of local communities.
  6. Share! Raise awareness among your family and friends about sustainable tourism.

For more information please see this page.