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8 Day Bitless and Barefoot Horse Riding Holiday in Hersonissos, Crete

Arion Stables & Apartments Hersonissos, Archagelou Michail 70014, Hersonissos, Heraklion, Crete, Greece

Bitless Horse Riding Holiday in Greece

Arion Stables ride differently, they ride bitless, barefoot, and some times without saddle. They try to understand the horse language and they speak to them. To get the most out of your riding experience, you need to talk and listen to your horse to understand each other. Together, let's make your horseback riding holiday unforgettable.

Key information

  • Rider Weight Limit: 176 pounds / 80 kilograms
  • Horse Height Range: 1.48 to 1.68 meters
  • Tack Type: English, western, and treeless
  • Horse Breed: 10 Haflingers and 2 Thoroughbreds

Meet the instructors

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  • 6 days of riding
  • Private lessons and rides
  • Bitless riding and barefoot horses
  • Approximate daily riding time: 1 to 3 hours
  • Brushing and feeding the horses
  • 7 nights' accommodation
  • Full board meals

Skill level

  • Beginner
  • Intermediate
  • Advanced


6 days with instruction in English
The organizer also speaks: French, German, Greek
Group size: Maximum of 4 participants
Airport transfer included: Heraklion International Airport
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Check-in Time:
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  • Gym
  • Golf course
  • Air-conditioned rooms
  • Bar
  • Barbeque facilities
  • Café
  • Dining area
  • Environmentally friendly
  • Fireplace
  • Garden
  • Kitchen
  • Lobby
  • Luggage room / storage
  • Multilingual staff
  • Picnic area
  • Restaurant
  • Special menu request
  • Terrace
  • Bicycle rental
  • Car rental
  • Currency exchange
  • Free parking
  • Free Wi-Fi
  • Laundry
  • Medical assistance
  • Meeting room
  • Tour assistance
  • Wireless internet

The accommodation consists of Arion Stables & Apartments Hersonissos' apartments of 60 square meters each, they were built in the beginning of 2017, each with two bedrooms with four beds, a big bathroom with shower, and living room with leather furnished. The apartments offer privacy to relax in, also a fully equipped kitchen.

On the ground floor is the café-bar and restaurant, there will be breakfast, lunch, and dinner served. Between the paddocks and the main building, you can find green gardens to relax and join the sun in the summer or in the middle of Cretan smooth winter, while watching or petting zoo farm animals and horses.

From the terrace of the café and restaurant, you have a view of the olive yards, the villages, the riding areas, and to all year long green gardens. There is a cleaning service every third day with towel and sheets change. 24/7 reception service, café, bar, and restaurant have opening hours.



Day 1

Arrival to Heraklion Airport (HER) and transfer to the Arion Stables. This is about 30 minutes drive and you may arrive at any time. There is no riding on the first day.

Day 2 - 5

After breakfast, you'll have course work, riding lessons, or treks that start at 9:00 a.m. and carries on for about one to two hours. You'll break for lunch until 4:30 p.m. followed by one-hour riding through the beautiful Cretan countryside.

If you would rather relax, you are free to do what you want in the afternoon, relax in the sun or your host would be happy to take you to the beach or nearest town or village for no extra charge.

Day 6

Today, you'll work on the course (about one to two hours) with a break for lunch or barbecue.

Day 7

For the guests, there will be a long ride to the beach. Beginners will ride only in the morning and will have the afternoon free to relax at the Arion Stables if they wish.

Day 8

It's the departure day. After a sad goodbye to your lovely horses and hosts, you will be transferred back to Heraklion Airport (HER), your departure flight may be at any time.

Riding overview

Guests who book the program must be confident in walk, trot, and canter, the similar program also for beginners or children. They should get used to riding in the countryside and must be fit enough to ride between one and three hours a day.

There are lots of hills and rough terrain in Crete. Riders should be able to mount and dismount by themselves and should be sure-footed also. Arion Stables encourage the riders to catch, groom, and tack up their horse by themselves. But there is always someone around who can lend a hand.

Either a keen interest in natural horsemanship or a willingness to learn is preferable for the stables.

Horses and riding

All Arion Stables' horses are schooled in English and western riding on the Arion Stables, where they develop a closeness and trust between horse and rider. Safety is of the most important and Arion Stables can only offer this if they can trust their horses.

The horses are first trained to recognize body language and listen when people talk to them, the horse is then walked without rider behind the more experienced and adult horses so they are never pressured or nervous.

After time, the horse is introduced to saddle and then the rider. It is also very important to accustom the horses to the everyday noises and distractions like traffic for example.

The horses are trained daily with regular treks through olive fields, mountainous countryside, and along the beaches and water to maintain their sure-footedness and excellent condition.

Ten horses are available for your quests to ride. The western style saddle gives the utmost comfort and safety to horse and rider alike on a long day treks.

Depending on the condition of the ground, you'll walk, trot, or canter. You will always be accompanied by one of Arion Stables' experienced guides on all rides.

Content of the Monty Roberts join up course

  • Join up with a horse run by Zara
  • Introduction to working with the double lunge by Zara
  • Join up together with Zara and then alone
  • Ability to work alone under the guidance of Zara with the double lunge

There is no riding on your arrival and departure days.


Zara Kosanke


The Arion Stables is situated in 10000 square meters in the middle of the olive yards. It is located 2 kilometers away from the beach of Analipsi Village, 2 kilometers north of Hersonissos Village, and 7 kilometers from the city center of Hersonissos. It’s a very quiet place and close to everything you wish on your holiday, the ideal destination for a relaxing holiday.


  • Beach of Analipsi Village, 2 kilometers
  • Hersonissos Village, 2 kilometers
  • City center of Hersonissos, 7 kilometers



  • Gym
  • Golf course


  • Air-conditioned rooms
  • Bar
  • Barbeque facilities
  • Café
  • Dining area
  • Environmentally friendly
  • Fireplace
  • Garden
  • Kitchen
  • Lobby
  • Luggage room / storage
  • Multilingual staff
  • Picnic area
  • Restaurant
  • Special menu request
  • Terrace


  • Bicycle rental
  • Car rental
  • Currency exchange
  • Free parking
  • Free Wi-Fi
  • Laundry
  • Medical assistance
  • Meeting room
  • Tour assistance
  • Wireless internet


The meals would be the Mediterranean, traditional Cretan cuisine.

The following meals are included:

  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner

The following dietary requirement(s) are served and/or catered for:

  • Organic
  • Regular (typically includes meat and fish)
  • Other dietary requirements on request
If you have special dietary requirements it's a good idea to communicate it to the organiser when making a reservation

Things to do (optional)

  • Car or bike rental
  • Diving
  • Golf
  • Jeep safari
  • Massage
  • Water sports

What's included

  • 6-day riding
  • Daily private lessons or riding out
  • Mounted games, vaulting, riding without a saddle, brushing and feeding the horses, or water games
  • Use of Shetland ponies and donkeys
  • Guidance of an experienced teacher
  • Breakfasts, lunches, and dinners
  • Transfer from and to the airport
  • 7 nights' accommodation

What's not included

  • Drinks, ice creams, and desserts

How to get there

Recommended Airports

Driving directions from Heraklion

  • From the airport or port of Heraklion, follow the signs to the national road to the east, in the direction of Hersonissos
  • Stay on the highway for about 17 kilometers
  • Take the exit to Kastelli or Lasithi Plateau, if you are in the new national road, turn left for about 2 kilometers and then to the left again for 800 meters
  • If you are in the old national road, turn right for 2 kilometers and then to the right again for 800 meters
Airport: Heraklion International Airport Airport transfer included: Heraklion International Airport No additional charges. You can request this in the next step.

Cancellation Policy

  • A reservation requires a deposit of 35% of the total price.
  • The deposit is non-refundable, if the booking is cancelled.
  • The rest of the payment should be paid on arrival.
8 days / 7 nights
from --
Low season
  • November 1 - April 30


High season
  • May 1 - October 31


Pricing information

There is also the option to book a bed and breakfast accommodation. Kindly send an inquiry for more information.

Price for children are as follows:

High season:
  • Infant: free
  • Kids 4 to 7 years: 275 EUR not riding (full board meals included)
  • Kids 8 to 11 years: 315 EUR not riding (full board meals included)
Low season:
  • Infant: free
  • Kids 4 to 7 years: 205 EUR not riding (full board meals included)
  • Kids 8 to 11 years: 245 EUR not riding (full board meals included)

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