A horse riding holiday in one of the prime equestrian locations in Europe is one of the best vacation options for horse lovers. You just can’t beat the varied environments, challenging trails and fresh air of some of Europe‚Äôs wilder, rural locations.
However, as anyone who owns a horse will know, horses do require a lot of care and providing the best care is not something that comes cheap and that is reflected in the cost of ridings holidays in Europe.
Some people might find the costs associated with a horse riding holiday to be prohibitive. Not only do you have the usual expenses of flight, transfers, accommodation and food, but you are also faced with the costs of horse hire and maintenance, guide fees, stabling and tuition fees.
It isn’t always a cheap holiday but that said, neither is Disneyland – special, memorable holidays are worth paying that bit extra for.
What Are The Costs Involved?
Of course, the total cost you are likely to pay varies widely depending on the area you are visiting, the holiday provider and the options you choose.
What you also need to consider is not necessarily the cost, but the value for money of each holiday. For example, a riding holiday where your accommodation is very basic will no doubt be lot cheaper than if you’re staying in a French Ch√Ęteau. And if you have to pay for your own food or if the holiday offers an all inclusive option will also affect the overall holiday price.
One other key area to consider regarding cost is the way the horses are cared for. If a holiday provider is offering ridiculously low pricing options, it means there has to be a compromise on their service somewhere. The one area where you really don’t want to compromise on is how well trained and cared for the horses are. Horses that are in good health, are well kept and respected are going to be of a lot better temperament than those whose living conditions are not so good.
As the horses you’re going to ride are going to be play such a prominent part in the enjoyment of your holiday, we’d strongly recommend that you really grill the holiday provider about their horses – where they came from, how they were bred, their living conditions, their riding schedule, etc.
Remember that if you’re riding a happy horse, you’re going to have a happy riding holiday.
Overall though and like any holiday, the more features a holiday itinerary includes, the more it is likely to cost.
The following are likely to increase the cost of your holiday:
- Planned trail and riding itinerary
- Multiple accommodation points
- Transport of your baggage from point to point
- All inclusive food and accommodation
- The presence of a trained guide or instructor
- Horse hire and stabling as dragging your own horse across Europe isn’t really an option
- Allowing a tour operator to arrange the whole trip for you
- Travelling at ‚Äėpeak season‚Äô which in most areas is July to September, with other peaks around Easter and Christmas
The more independent you are in piecing the different elements together yourself, the cheaper your holiday will be; although this could be at the cost of increased logistical efforts or stress. It is a payoff and one that depends on how much involvement you want and what sort of adventure you are looking for.
Average Holiday Costs in Different European Countries
The following is a very rough guide to average holiday costs in some of the most popular horse riding destinations in Europe. Costs are given per week per rider for guided tours. They will of course vary according to the season and tour features, so please don‚Äôt take this as any more than an indicative guide.
- Finland: ¬£1,400 +
- France: ¬£830 – ¬£1,400
- Greece: ¬£750
- Iceland: ¬£1,500
- Ireland: ¬£900 – ¬£1,400
- Italy: ¬£600 – ¬£2,700
- Norway: ¬£900 – ¬£1,600
- Portugal: ¬£780 – ¬£1,300
- Spain: ¬£900 – ¬£2,100
- Sweden: ¬£945 – ¬£1,400
- Turkey: ¬£860 +
- UK: ¬£700 – ¬£1,650 +
When looking into a horse riding holiday you should check carefully what is included in your holiday package and then decide whether you consider it to be value for money or not. Talk to the holiday providers in person if you can and ask if they have any references from previous guest – the providers with good ratings will often publish genuine guest feedback on their website.
Riding Holidays in France
Obviously we’re a tad biased but we truly believe that our riding holidays represent some of the best value in Europe. Unlike some other European destinations, we’re also a bit closer to the UK so if you’re interested in discovering more about the cost of a riding holiday in France, be sure to check out our holiday prices.