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15 Amazing Places to Go Horseback Riding

Horseback riding is a fantastic way to explore natural beauty around the world while connecting with wildlife and learning about a region’s history. While there are thousands of wonderful places around the world to enjoy horseback riding, whether because of their natural beauty, cultural heritage, or unique location, these 15 places are particularly great. Next time you’re looking for a vacation destination, consider taking one of these trips and prioritizing horseback riding. 

1. Banff National Park, Canada

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Image by Santiago Urquijo

Discover Canada’s beautiful scenery and wildlife on a peaceful horseback ride with real Canadian cowboys and cowgirls. Banff Trail Riders even offers overnight trail rides, mimicking the experience of early explorers of the Canadian Rockies. You spend all day riding but get to rest at night with modern comforts. 

2. Patagonia, Argentina and Chile

For many centuries, gauchos rode horses through Patagonia—and, in fact, they still do today. Argentina is famous for its horses and polo, and horseback riding is intimately woven into the culture there. If you want a taste of what it’s like to ride through the Andes, make sure to check out opportunities for horseback riding, especially in Torres del Paine National Park.

3. Monument Valley, Arizona/Utah, U.S.

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Image by George Shelley Productions

It’s hard to count just how many films have been set in Monument Valley—including many of the most famous western films to date. Follow in the footsteps of Billy the Kid (1941), Once Upon a Time in the West (1968), Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade (1989), and just about every John Ford film by discovering the wild west on horseback.

4. Andalucia, Spain

Andalusian horses are incredibly intelligent, obedient, and docile, and they’re usually best suited for experienced riders because of their speed. If you’re not experienced, you can still experience this region on horseback by selecting a tour or guide that can help you. On your rest day, head to famous Jerez to see the dancing horses at the Royal Andalusian School of Equestrian Art.

5. Masai Mara, Kenya

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Image by Buena Vista Images

Going on safari on horseback could be the most incredible way to take in the wildlife of the African savannah. Maasai Mara National Reserve is an area in southwestern Kenya along the Tanzanian border, where you can see lions, cheetahs, elephants, zebras, and hippos. Expect gazelles to be grazing near you as you trot along on your horse.

6. Cappadocia, Turkey

Explore the unique rock formations and underground cities of Cappadocia on horseback and you won’t regret it. Cappadocia is famous for its cool rocks and history, and it is a must-see while visiting Turkey. At the insanely affordable price of only $5-10 USD, a ride through this unique desert is totally worth it, especially if you catch a sunrise or sunset.

7. The Camargue, France

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Image by Peter Adams

Discover the wetlands and white horses of this picturesque region with green grass, marshlands, and pink flamingos in the south of France on a beautiful white horse just like a “manade,” the French version of cowboys who tend to sheep.

8. Petra, Jordan

Take a two-hour tour of the amazing ancient city of Petra with tombs and temples carved into sandstone cliffs from around 300 B.C.The desert views and ancient ruins are even better when you ride a horse to get there.

9. Bryce Canyon National Park, Utah, U.S.

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Image by Brent Clark Photography

One of the most amazing things to do in Bryce Canyon National Park is to explore the unique hoodoos and rock formations while riding a horse. Bryce’s unforgettable scenery makes this horseback ride a true adventure.

10. Bagan, Myanmar

Explore the historic temples and pagodas of Bagan on horseback. You can even rent a traditional horse and cart to see Bagan attractions like the Min O Chantha Pagoda and Dhammayangyi Pagoda.

11. Iceland

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Image by Blue Planet Studio

In Iceland, you can ride horses through otherworldly landscapes, like volcanic lava fields and glaciers. There are guided horseback tours to be found all over the country, so choose the one that best suits your interests—green fields in Polar Hestar, lava rides near Reykjavik, or a Viking adventure along the coast.

12. Machu Picchu, Peru

Take an amazing overnight multi-day horse trek along Machu Picchu to Cusco or Puna. Ride along the Inca Trail and reach the ancient ruins on hooves instead of feet.

13. Queenstown, New Zealand

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Image by Scott E. Barbour

Explore Middle Earth and the landscape used to film Lord of the Rings on horseback, just like Legolas, Gandalf, and Aragorn. Or go deep into Queenstown’s high country, rivers, and backcountry near Glenorchy with soaring peaks and snow-capped mountains.

14. The Grand Canyon, Arizona, U.S.

A horseback riding tour of the Grand Canyon offers a unique view of this natural wonder in true Western style. Many of the trails actually use mules not horses, because mules are more agile on the winding and narrow paths.

15. Kakadu National Park, Australia

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Image by Tim Phillips Photos

Head on horseback to Kangaroo Island to see sea lions, koalas, penguins, and the distinct coastal rock formations of Kakadu National Park in the Australian Outback, home to Aboriginal people for more than 50,000 years. View waterfalls, billabongs, and rocky cliffs from atop your trusty steed.

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