The beautiful Italy offers a variety of types of horseback riding. Everything from dressage and terrain jumping to wonderful long rides among hills and vineyards can be found here. And of course you get to enjoy the country’s food culture and good wines.
We are a group of ladies who have been friends since school age and who always took riding lessons together. Every year for 12 years, we plan a riding trip together. We often try to find new countries to visit, but a favorite has become Italy, so we went there for the third time.
On our latest equestrian trip to Italy, the farm was located on the edge of the Monte Penna Natural Reserve at an altitude of 825 meters above sea level. Located in the intersection zone between Grosseto, Siena and Viterbo, the farm is well located with regard to nature, archeology, thermal phenomena and a varied landscape. The farm has organic farming and consists of 6 buildings including horse stables and is surrounded by 110 ha of varied terrain. The main occupation here is horse breeding and training.
Mountains and rivers
Monte Penna Natural Reserve is an exciting area overgrown with forest. The two highest points are Poggio della Vecchia (1086 meters) and Mount Civitella (1107 meters). The area is crossed by the river Fiora, which has carved out a beautiful valley in the mountains. Bats live in the many caves and there are many birds in the reserve, especially many falcons and owls. The other wild animals include wild boar, fox, porcupine, deer, weasel, skunks and martens.
You will be riding för 2 hours (light) or 4 hours (full) per day (2 hours in the morning and 2 hours in the afternoon) depending on the selected program. You ride along different routes out from the farm into the nature reserve and there is plenty to enjoy. A good and willing horse, pleasant and varied riding, exciting and worth seeing nature but not least peace and quiet from everyday busy life.
It is important that a riding trip is a success and a wonderful experience, therefore it is important that you plan it carefully.
Therefore, we take great care when booking the trip so that we are completely sure that the equestrian center meets our requirements and wishes.
If you want to experience something genuine, an Italy before the big tourist flows, then head to little Molise as soon as possible. There is still a scent of time gone by in villages and towns. Crafts and traditions live here, folk festivals and gastronomy have deep roots and in the middle of the green, suddenly magnificent monuments can surprise.
Carmine, who previously ran a successful restaurant, decided to combine her two passions, cooking and horses and taking guests on long rides. To help him, he has safe and forward western horses and his two dogs who are always on the rides. Over the years, more and more exciting long rides have emerged.
You will ride 30-40 km per day, sometimes without meeting anyone, and then spend the night with all the comforts of a medieval village. The pace is healthy when the ground permits, when it comes to arriving at the next accommodation in good time for an aperitif and a three-course meal. Carmine speaks fluent English and is a social and friendly man who loves his job, which you will notice.
For me personally, there is a good guideline that says that a trip is good, I do not have time to play in the evenings as I do at home. My evenings at home are often spent on the couch in front of the TV, but it’s not the TV I watch but my mobile phone. It is in the mobile I have the links to them wordgames and tablegames I´m always entertaining myself with.
I play every night, usually a little too long. But when we are on riding trips, I never have time, then the evenings consist either of riding trips, restaurant visits or wine evenings, and I love it!
If I were to mention any other country besides Italy as my favorite country, then it would probably be Botswana or Iceland. In Botswana, everything was so different and riding with wild animals nearby became so much more exciting. However, the equipment was not of the best quality so I was often a little worried. It was definitely worth it though, and what amazing photos I got from there!
Iceland is not like anything else, neither the environment nor the horses because they are much smaller and have five gaits. Therefore, it will also be a slightly different way to ride, but very comfortable I must say. Walking on a beach of black lava is a huge experience that I want to experience again.