The Cotswolds is one of the UK’s official ‘Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty’ and visitors and tourists come from...
Every year, thousands of horse riders head to the Wye Valley, and it is easy to see why. There are countless woodlands that offer hard stoned tracks for riders, courtesy of the Forest Enterprise, and numerous bridleways that cut through the rolling hills and deepening valleys. And as the landscape is so perfect for horse riders, several riding stables have sprung up in this area, providing services such as livery, lessons or hacks across country. We’ve picked what we think is a good representation of what is on offer:
The most popular holiday booked at the Freerein stables is the 2 day self-guided trek, where you follow a well established route that takes you through the old lanes of Clyro, down the woodland tracks and across the River Wye. As you cross the river you can see the Hell Hole rapids by the old suspension bridge. Head up towards Llanerchcoedlan Wells where you’ll spy an old working hill farm. Your second day includes a choice of routes but most people choose the longer one, which takes them up Llandeilo hill, through Painscastle, stopping at the Roast Ox Inn for lunch. Head back to Free Rein in your own time.
This riding school is very much family orientated, with hacks designed for small children to more experienced riders, and lasting from 2 hours to all day. All rides are graded so nothing is left to chance, and all riders are given the opportunity to walk, trot and canter. And if a rider has mixed ability the ride will be adjusted according to that. The area around Kington provides magnificent views, particularly once you reach the top of the hills, and on some day rides lunch at a local pub is included.
Those wanting to see the very best that the Wye Valley has to offer whilst trekking on the back of a sturdy welsh pony, they should head over to Grange Trekking. With ponies that cater for every capability, and from the ages of six to the elderly, you can opt for an hour or day trek and you can book accommodation within the cottages. The treks are designed to allow you the best views through forests, past natural waterfalls, over heather covered mountaintops, and cover many natural beauty spots. Your destination on most treks is the wonderful Black Mountains, where you get magnificent views of the Holy Mountains, the Wye Valley, Golden Valley, Brecon Beacons, the Herefordshire Plain and the Vale of Ewyas.
Finally, for those who don’t want to take part in organised treks or hacking, who have their own horses and just want to explore the surrounding countryside, the Dairy House Farm is probably going to be your idea of heaven. They have paddocks and stables that are available for your horses, and you can also use their washing and drying rooms too. They have a wealth of information about the area so will be able to tell you about local bridle paths, so you can come and explore the local riding, venture into the welsh hills for a day, or simply come and stay with your horse. Whatever you decide to do, a very relaxed welcome awaits you.
Planning a horse riding trip to The Cotswolds or Wye Valley? Manor Cottages are a locally based, family business who specialise in Holiday Cottages and Self Catering Accommodation across the Cotswold and Wye Valley area. With over 270 holiday properties, we are the largest supplier across the region and generated over 30,000 visitors to the area in 2013.
For more information, contact us by calling 01993 824 252. You can view our range of Wye Valley properties HERE.