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Costa Rica Horse Riding Holiday

This listing has the most popular offer available in Costa Rica

Immerse into the "Art of Horse Communication and Riding" with the finest aids! Enjoy a positive environment surrounded by nature and improve your knowledge of natural horsemanship and the "Classical Art of Bitless Riding". Come to learn how to communicate with horses using clear body language, energy, and focus in a way that is natural to the horses. Finca Soley strives to build a strong relationship with the horses and wants to help you learn to do the same.

Key Information

  • Rider Weight Limit: 187 pounds / 85 kilograms
  • Horse height range: 11 to 15 hands
  • Tack type: English (bitless, bareback pads)
  • Horse breed: Iberos, PRE, Quarterhorses, Criollos, Aztecs, and Shetland ponies

Meet the instructors

Isa
Read more

Highlights

  • 4 tours and activities of your choice
  • Enjoy 1 full day trail ride and 2 theory lessons
  • 7 sessions in natural horsemanship and fine riding
  • Stay in a family-run organic farm on a quiet place surrounded by the jungle
  • Airport transfers from and to San Jose are included
  • Daily breakfast, lunch, and dinner will be provided
  • 9 nights' accommodation

Skill level

  • Beginner
  • Intermediate
  • Advanced

Styles


8 days with instruction in English
The organizer also speaks: German, Spanish
Group size: Maximum of 14 participants
Airport transfer included: Juan Santamaría International Airport
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Accommodation

You will be accommodated in a shared or private room with a private bathroom. Finca Soley provides bed sheets and you will have a hot water shower. The holiday homes are newly built and combine rustic farm style with recycling materials and natural building. There is a wooden deck to practice yoga, a horse-related library, and a TV to see horse videos. It contains vegetable and herbal gardens and loads of fruit trees.

Program

Ride with just your thoughts, energy, and the finest aids on well-educated and very sensitive horses. This holiday is for beginners as well as experienced horse lovers. Horses at Finca Soley live in a natural herd. All horses are barefoot and bitless. The horses range around freely on the farm and pastures and the guests are able to observe the natural behavior of the horses or take meditation in the beautiful mountain pasture with stunning views.

Sample day

Start the day with a hearty breakfast and then head to the riding arena to study Natural Horsemanship, Bitless Riding, following the classical principles, and liberty training. All training will be personalized to your wishes and abilities. You can focus on the relationship part or liberty training. Also, you can focus on the riding and improve your seat and aids

After a nice siesta to relax on the terrace and observe the horses roaming around, you will either keep learning in a theory class, head out on a trail ride, or enjoy a cultural tour to discover the beauty of the Turrialba region.

Natural Horsemanship

At Finca Soley, they understand natural horsemanship as a holistic way of keeping and training with horses. They base their principles on love, understanding, and boundaries.

The relationship they have with their horses is free of judgment and includes a positive attitude, where the horse feels safe and valued. It is based on communication in which they will always first listen, understand, and then share their ideas. This relationship is also surrounded by boundaries that they set in order to be able to be safe and give the horse room to express himself.

Full day trail ride

You will ride over the mountain and get down on the other side. You'll pass their little neighbor's village and will stop for a midday lunch at the river that borders to "Oriente". It's time to cool down and take a swim. On your way back, you'll cross banana gardens and sugar fields and may see the workers harvesting.

Individualized program

Next to the lessons, you can choose four different activities from the following:

  • Chocolate Workshop and Tour
  • Coffee tour
  • Jungle tour
  • CATIE botanical garden
  • Waterfall tour
  • Pejibaye and trapiche tour

Included excursions

Choose four areas/activities from the following to be included in your schedule:

Jungle tour

If you want to discover the real natural beauty of Costa Rica, you have to explore the jungle. This jungle tour starts at Finca Soley and is by foot. Your guide is local and has lived his whole life close to the jungle. He knows a lot about the rainforest, special plants and trees, and how to read tracks of the typical rainforest animals.

You will enter the jungle behind Finca Soley, where you have the chance to experience the rainforest with its fascinating flora and fauna. First, you'll use some paths, later on, you walk cross-country. A variety of stunning butterflies, birds, insects, snakes, and sloths may cross your path.

The lush, green surrounding with its special atmosphere makes you feel as if you are part of an adventure movie. You are going to climb up the mountain until you reach a point that provides an awesome view of the valley, the perfect location for some photos.

CATIE Botanical Garden

Welcome to a place to relax! Discover various botanical “rarities”, such as cinnamon, the “cannonball tree”, “hombrón”, cardamon, strychnine, and more. On your way through the garden, you can also see more than 30 families and 95 species of native and exotic trees. Also, more than 160 samples of genetic material from diverse corners of the world are conserved here.

CATIE's coffee collection is one of the largest in Latin America as well as the "International Cacao Collection". The various studies and research that the center has carried out have been fundamental for the coffee-growing countries of Central America. Discover the fruits of the annatto bush, in colorful racemes or panicles.

During guava season, you can observe one of the most nutritious fruits, containing high levels of Vitamin A, C, and iron. The fruit of the Peach Palm is greatly appreciated for its nutritional value all over America. The palm is also cultivated to harvest the lucrative “palm heart”.

In CATIE, you will learn about a breathtaking variety of tropical fruits, medicinal, oil-producing, and ornamental plants, roots, tubers, and timber trees. You cannot only see many different plants but also smell, feel, and taste the great diversity, which makes the tour an interactive experience for all senses!

  • Opening hours: 07:00 - 16:00
  • Location: CATIE is situated south of Turrialba, 25 minutes drive by car from Finca Soley.
  • What to wear: Dress lightly and wear comfortable footwear. Bring with you sunscreen, rain protection, mosquito repellent, camera, and binoculars
  • CATIE's missions: To increase human well-being and reduce rural poverty through education, research, and technical cooperation by using the competitive, sustainable provision of ecosystem services through the integrated management of agriculture and natural resources.

Golden Bean coffee tour

The coffee tour takes place at the coffee factory and plantation named "Golden Beans". From Finca Soley, only a 10-minute car drive away. The tour starts in the fields of the plantation and continues inside the factory where you'll see the different stages of the coffee production from washing, peeling, drying, and processing of the beans to the finished coffee.

Afterward, you have the opportunity to taste freshly brewed coffee and some sweets made of coffee beans. You can also sample some liquor or add it to your coffee. In the end, you are free to browse the souvenir shop with a vast choice of not only coffee-related souvenirs of Costa Rica.

The tour guide, Tairon, is a very friendly person who is passionate about sharing his huge knowledge about coffee. He explains every little step so you can follow him easily. You are encouraged to ask questions throughout the whole tour.

  • Souvenir shop: You can buy different roasts of coffee, either whole bean or grounded besides cacao beans. You can also get sweets like chocolate coffee beans, macadamia sweets, and various types of liquor.
  • Note: It is possible to pay with USD, CR-Colones, or with Visa/credit card
  • Opening hours: 08:00 - 17:30
  • Location: 5-minute walk from Finca Soley

La Marta Wildlife Refuge

This paradise of a tropical rainforest is part of the La Amistad-Talamanca Biosphere Reserve and is considered a Natural Heritage of Humanity by UNESCO and it was the first private wildlife refuge in the country. 1500 hectares of very humid tropical rainforest (6.5 times more annual rain than in San Jose).

Approximately 40% of the territory is primary forest and the remaining 60% is covered by secondary forest in different stages of natural regeneration. It borders the Amistad and the Tapani-Macizi de la Muerte Nationalparks. An abundance of lichen, mosses, tropical plants, birds, butterflies, insects, and frogs can be found and rarely seen mammals live in this territory, like ant bears, martens, ocelots, jaguars, and tapirs among others.

You should not miss the “River Tram” which you can hop on and pull yourself over to the other side of the river and enjoy gorgeous views. There are plenty of nature trails (14 kilometers altogether) through the rainforest following the two rivers, Río Gato and Río Marta, or leading uphill to an elevation of 872 meters with a viewing tower which provides nice views over the forest and the complete valley.

  • What else?

There are camping and picnic areas as well if you decide to bring lunch or a snack (you are requested only to eat at designated spots and not along the trails). They are many “pozos”, swimming holes, along the rivers. But please, use common sense and check on the water level and current before throwing yourself into the water. Be prepared for muddy trails and partly steep inclines, high humidity, and rain, for abundant flora but little chances to spot big wild mammals.

  • Location: 20-minute drive by car from Finca Soley

Kayak tour

On lake Angosturo near Atirro, you can go for a wonderful guided Kayak tour. It's a peaceful lake and you can see different birds and animals. It is a great opportunity to relax and to enjoy the silence of nature with physical exercise. On a sunny day, the lake offers a beautiful view of the volcano Turrialba. After your tour, you have the opportunity to enjoy a cold drink at the Hotel Casa Turrire. Kindly note that you need to bear your own expenses.

  • 15 minutes drive by var from Finca Soley
  • Kayak people will pick you up. Paddles, kayak, and lifejackets are provided
  • The tour guide is a very nice young man from La Suiza who knows a lot about birds and animals
  • Bring with you: A hat, sunscreen, drinking water, and clothes and shoes that can get wet

Aquiares Waterfall

Close to Turrialba, you can go for a wonderful bath under a waterfall. It's a peaceful place and you can see the beauty of Costa Rican nature. There are plenty of birds and other animals around and it is not touristy at all. It is a great opportunity for having a break and just relax in the wilderness. There is a second smaller waterfall really close, where you can take a shower like you never had before. After your tour, you have the opportunity to enjoy a cold drink or a meal in one of the restaurants in Turrialba. Kindly note that you need to bear your own expenses.

  • Bring with you: A hat, sunscreen, drinking water, and swimwear
  • 40-minute drive by car from Finca Soley

Trapiche and Pejivalle River tour

It's a short drive of about 10 minutes takes you from Finca Soley on a winding road through sugarcane fields to the beautiful Pejibaye River. The big trees at its banks provide a much-appreciated shade on a hot day. On the weekends, this is one of the popular places for the locals. You immediately feel cooler when seeing the clear, bubbling water. In some places, the water is of amazing blue color. At first, the moment the water feels cold, but it's so refreshing once you are in it.

You can drift and let the current take you a bit downriver but make sure you get out in time before the next rapid. Check the water level and current before your plunge yourself in. It is not recommended to swim at a high water level. Please take care of yourself. It's very pleasant to sit there to watch the calm water flow. They provide you a snack at the river.

Pejibaye is a nice, little village with pretty, well-maintained houses and gardens and a few shops where you can get a good insight into the typical rural life of the Ticos. At the village of Pejibaye, visit a local “Soda”, a small restaurant a nice hangout place for locals. Not far from Pejibaye, visit a Trapiche, a typical, basic sugar cane mill where you can see the complete process on how to get a block of brown sugar out of recently cut sugar cane. Do not forget to bring your swimwear.

Instructors

Isa Frei

Location

The farm is located on top of a small mountain called Chucuyo, like the little parrot that lives here. There are numerous birds, butterflies, sloths, and other wildlife to observe. Within a 30-minute hike, you'll reach the small rural town of Tucurrique where you can find shops and restaurants. Finca Soley enjoys living in a very safe mountainous area with amazing views and trails to ride.

Food

You can book your stay with three delious meals included. Prepared with fresh ingredeents from the farm or locally produced. Or you can book the fully equipped guesthouse and prepare your own meals in your own kitchen. There are several times per week wherein food trucks deliver fresh products to the farm, as well as once, a bakery. Also, you can order food to be delivered.

The following meals are included:

  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
  • Drinks

The following drinks are included:

  • Water
  • Coffee
  • Tea
  • Alcoholic beverages

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

  • Vegetarian
  • Vegan
  • Gluten Free
  • Pescatarian
  • Lactose Free
If you have special dietary requirements it's a good idea to communicate it to the organiser when making a reservation

What's included

  • 7 natural horsemanship sessions
  • 2 theory lessons
  • 4 tours or trail rides to choose from all prices are included
  • Full day trail ride OR a trip to the volcano or a trip to the beach
  • 9 nights' accommodation
  • Fresh homemade vegetarian breakfast, lunch, and dinner daily
  • Juan Santamaria International Airport (SJO) pick up and drop off
  • Access to all the community areas (terrace, living room, gardens)

What's not included

  • Airfare
  • Travel inssurance
  • Personal expenses

How to get there

Recommended Airports

Airport: Juan Santamaría International Airport Airport transfer included: Juan Santamaría International Airport No additional charges. You can request this in the next step.

Cancellation Policy

  • A reservation requires a deposit of 25% of the total price.
  • The deposit is non-refundable, if the booking is cancelled.
  • The rest of the payment should be paid on arrival.
10 days / 9 nights
from --
Pricing information

Traveling as a couple or friends? Please send an inquiry for discounts!

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