We have collected together the best short walks in the Cotswolds. These are in and around 2-hours, and offer...
The Cotswolds has a long history with horse riding and hosts three of the top equestrian events in Britain. Combine this with the Cotswolds famous countryside of rolling hills, picturesque villages and quiet country lanes and you’ve discovered a horse riding holiday like no other.
Theres a saddle for all abilities and a choice of terrain for all appetites; from long trails with a pub stop to fun rides. The warmer weather is made for enjoying some horse therapy so here we share with you the best horse riding facilities in the Cotswolds.
Cotswold Fun Rides
These fun rides can be booked with the TV-famous Cotswold Farm Park, located just 15 miles outside of Cheltenham and into the rolling Cotswold countryside. The super-fun trip is hosted on the acres of a private estate owned by the UKs most famous farmer, Adam Henson of BBC fame.
Explore further and you’ll find monthly fun group rides across ten miles of private Cotswold countryside on offer. The terrain is varied and as it is all about fun, the hack can be shortened to three miles for those just starting out. The fun rides are available for one weekend each month with limited ticket availability, so advanced booking really is essential. Riders are given a time slot, which is great for minimising crowds for a super-relaxed experience.
Ages 14-17 can ride alone but must be signed-in by an adult and a younger rider must be actually accompanied by an adult.
As well as the stunning countryside, there are up to 60 optional jumps along the route, which offers a fun and varied terrain including a small pool of water, woodland, open parkland, a short stretch along a road and a couple of road crossings. The fun ride season kicks-off in summer and is ideal for all ages, abilities and lead rein riders. The reduced numbers make this a super-relaxed riding experience in a very special course indeed.
A professional photographer will capture the perfect snap from your day and each rider will receive a rosette memento too.
Cotswold Pub Ride
Jill Carenza began riding before she could walk, or so the story goes. Located just off the famous Cotswold Way walking route is Cotswold Riding and Jill Carenza Equestrian. The well-established stables (over 35 years) have over 50 horses to suit all abilities and sizes. For confident riders, the nearby Cotswold Escarpment and cross country scenery provides the ideal place for a fast hack or there’s the show jumping and dressage schooling facilities to try out. Beginners can enjoy the tuition of a slower-pace bridleway hack and the legendary pub ride, stopping for an hour re-fuelling is a must, especially for groups.
Cotswold Trail Riding
Located less than six miles from Stroud, itself only a 90 minute train ride from London, is Ongers Farm, home to Cotswold Trail Riding. Open seven days a week and offering lessons, hacks and group rides for all abilities, Cotswold Trail Riding is a very easily accessible Cotswold riding experience. This is the familys choice for horse riding in the Cotswolds, with one hour tasters to all-day jaunts available, along bridle paths through the stunning Cotswold countryside. For children, age 6+, activity days provide the ideal introduction to caring for horses and includes grooming as well as a ride. Fun for adults is also catered for, with popular pub rides, taking riders through organic countryside and ancient woodland with a welcomed stop at a local pub.
Barton End Equestrian Centre
Fancy learning to ride sidesaddle? Or how does an evening hack with friends sound? Here you will find a show jump arena or mini cross-country to test the best of tempers, regardless of your ability or experience. This is the place to discover your passion or season your skills, with a busy activity calendar all year round and over 40 horses of varying abilities. Barton End Equestrian Centre sits quietly in one of the Stroud Valley’s, near the historical milling village of Nailsworth, also home to the famous Egypt Mill restaurant (one of the best in the Cotswolds). The South Cotswolds is in fact known for its foodie scene and William’s Food Hall, the multi-award winning deli in Nailsworth, is not to be missed when staying in this part of the Cotswolds.
Visit the Venice of the Cotswolds, Bourton-on-the-Water, and enjoy a gentle hack with Bourton Vale Equestrian Centre around the Cotswolds’ most famous Slaughter villages, taking to the famous shallow waters for one of the most memorable experiences in the Cotswolds. This horse riding centre, based in the very heart of the Cotswolds, offers something for all riders, but it is its unique location that sets this horse riding experience apart. Bourton is only a five minute drive from the convenience of Stow-on-the-Wold and is famous for its low bridges, of which there are five, over the River Windrush that passes in crystal clear colour beneath. Bourton Vale riding offers experienced visitors a gentle hour-long trek to take in the villages of Upper Slaughter and Lower Slaughter or tuition in the beautifully maintained outdoor arena.