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Tanzania Horse Riding Holiday

Follow in the footstep of the iron lady, Margarete Trappe. Each horse riding safari is led by qualified and professionally trained guides, always pushing for a new and exhilarating adventure. Off the beaten path, away from crowds and engines, explore Africa in the shadow of the snowy peaks of Mt Kilimanjaro, encounter wildlife, raw and genuine tribes, and the true and traditional mobile safari, where you'll cover great distances on the back of a horse. The thrill of galloping across the Serengeti plains, surrounded by thousands of wildebeest, the greatest migration on earth. Up and close to the giants, the elephant.

Key information:

  • Rider Weight Limit: 187 pounds / 85 kilograms
  • Tack Type: English tack

Highlights

  • Daily riding with a qualified private guide
  • 4-6 hours in the saddle a day
  • Enjoy a new and exhilarating adventure
  • The program caters to fit intermediate riders
  • All meals are included from arrival to departure
  • 3 nights accommodation

Skill level

  • Intermediate

Styles


4 days with instruction
Group size: Minimum of 4 participants
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Accommodation

You will spend 1 night at a permanent lodge (the night upon arrival) and 2 nights in the mobile camp.

Lodge

The first night is spent at a lodge situated on a golf, polo, and wildlife estate, only 30 minutes drive from the international airport. Each room has its own en suite bathroom, flush toilet, and white fluffy towels. There is Wi-Fi, a swimming pool to be enjoyed, and spa treatments, yoga, golf, and polo can be arranged upon request.

Mobile camp

Under the private canvas, two nights are spent under Kaskazi’s tailor-made mobile camp. The tents are of their own design with ensuite bush toilets and hot bucket showers. Full board accommodation and locally sourced beverages, other requirements can be arranged prior to arrival and will then be charged at cost price.

They are comfortable and spacious, being 4x4 meters with mosquito-netted doors and windows to allow for ventilation but still remain insect-proof. Each tent is provided with a carpet, towel rack, bedside table and water bottle, bed and cotton linen, and a solar light. Outside each tent, there is a veranda with chairs and a washstand that you share with your tent partner. Each tent has its own bush toilet and bucket shower.

The toilet is a traditional short drop style toilet with a nice wooden toilet seat over a metal box with open sides. The motto is "Rhinos cover it please do the same". There is a small mound of dirt with a trowel next to the toilet seat for this purpose. The shower is a traditional star-gazing canvas bucket.

Single supplement

If the guest is unwilling to share a tent, there is an additional charge of 70 USD per person per night. (However, this can be discussed depending on the route and the number of people on safari). They never mix different sex and if there are odd numbers out on safari, they do not charge the extra single supplement, this fee only applies upon request.

Program

A horse safari with Kaskazi Horse Safaris

The horse, with beauty unsurpassed, strength immeasurable and grace unlike any other, remains humble enough to carry a man upon his back. The journey will bring the essential joy of being in contact with rare elements of grace, beauty, spirit, and freedom, the horse and its nature.

On day one, you will be exhausted and full of amazement. On day two, you will arrive at camp unable to walk and nearly too exhausted to eat. A good night’s rest and you will wake up and the horse will lend you his strength, speed, and grace to continue, you will give him guidance, intelligence, and understanding greater than his, and together you can achieve a richness that neither can alone.

On day four, as companions you have the strength to carry on the day with triumph. The days go by and suddenly the sad day comes when the companionship comes to an end.

Day 1

Arrive to the lodge for lunch, settle into the new surroundings and meet the other participants on the safari (unless private safari).

Over lunch a briefing will take place and shortly thereafter an afternoon introduction ride takes place. This is a good opportunity for everyone to get to know their mount before heading into the national park the following day.

The afternoon ride takes place on a wildlife estate (fenced), home to plenty of plains game like zebras, wildebeests, elands, and if lucky there is a good chance of seeing one of the shyest and rarest antelopes in Africa, the Gerenuk (also know as giraffe antelope). Back to the lodge in time for showers and sundowners before dinner is served.

Day 2

Wake up calls with tea and coffee, breakfast is served anytime from early hours. After breakfast the drive is about thirty minutes to Arusha National Park gate. Here the horses will be waiting, ready to be mounted and shortly after you ride into one of the most beautiful parks in East Africa. Here the vegetation will change dramatically, from open grassland to rainforest. With good chances of seeing, buffaloes, giraffes, all your plains game, elephants and leopards are present however harder to spot along with rare species such as Suni, Red Duiker, the magnificent Hartlaub's turaco, colobus monkey and the endless bird life.

The feeling is magical as you enter into the big canopy forests. Lunch will be set on route, with time for a small siesta. After lunch the ride continues through leopard country and as we head towards our night stop, we will pass by Margarete Trappe’s old house.

The legendary lady known and remembered as the Iron lady from the first world war. “If, as children, we were thrilled by Buffalo Bill we should have been still more spellbound by Mrs. Trappe’s adventures, the adventures of the fearless woman with her two legendary horses, Comet and Diamond, and her two inseparable Alsatians. Like a phantom she would suddenly appear, like a phantom she would vanish; as intimate with wild beasts as though they were tame.”

These are some of the tales about Margarete who’s old riding paths this horse safari follows through the holy forests of the park. Arrive to camp, based on the foot of Mt Meru in time for showers and sundowners then dinner under the stars.

Day 3

This morning you will hopefully wake up to the very talkative Colobus monkeys. Breakfast is served and shortly thereafter we mount and directions are taken towards the area where the film Hatari was filmed, starring John Wayne. Thereafter halfway into the morning ride we start the climb (on horseback), some will be done on the horse and some on foot, aiming to reach a viewpoint, that if clear has one of the best views of Mt Kilimanjaro, here we will dismount our horses and instead mount a car and drive the last, steepest part in the vehicle. You drive passed the “Fig Tree Arch”, a massive fig tree arch, big enough to fit five horses underneath it.

The drive continues until we reach lunch, beautifully located next to a waterfall. We are now on about 2000 meters above sea level. After lunch we start heading back towards the horses, we then ride back down to camp and after returning to camp, there will be an option to jump into the vehicles (or relax in camp) and go visit the Momella lakes, hoping to see some hippos and beautiful water birds. Sundowners at the lakes before heading back to camp for showers and dinner.

Day 4

Wake up to Colobus monkeys chatting in the early hours of the morning. Breakfast is served and everyone mounts and start heading back towards civilization. Enjoy the last morning with your mount in this magical place on earth, full of wildlife, stories and tales.

Late morning, we will get back to the Arusha National park gate where we dismount and say farewell to our four legged friends. From here there are a few options, some will continue onto other safaris or stay another night or two at the lodge and practice and play polo for a few days.

Drop off and pick up times

  • Kaskazi’s set arrival times

On the set arrival date, Kaskazi will pick up guests at any time at any place between Arusha Town and Kilimanjaro International Airport. In case of arrival a day or two earlier than the set arrival date, an additional transfer cost of 80 USD per vehicle (maximum of 4 pax) will apply. This transfer fee applies within the region of Arusha Town and Kilimanjaro International Airport.

  • Kaskazi’s set departure times

On the set departure date, Kaskazi will drop off guests within Arusha Town and Kilimanjaro International Airport. It is of the highest importance that no one has a flight departure before 3 p.m. on this day. For guests who depart later (who prefer not to wait at the airport), a day room can be arranged prior to the safari for an extra cost.

Horses

The horses are all-purpose trained safari horses, with a mix of local breeds, crossbreeds, and thoroughbreds. Close to all of them play polo and therefore used to be ridden with one hand (neck reigned). This allows you to take photos and dig into your saddlebag while out on safari. Only some of them are ridden English style, if this is the case the guide will tell you before you mount your horse.

All horses are given lots of love, care, and attention, therefore resulting in their nice characters and strong personalities. They all have their own heads with different temperaments, which allows for finding a perfect fit for each rider.

Tack

All the horses come with their own tack. Most of them are in all-around English saddles (without the kneepad) and each horse has its own bridle and bit. Each rider/saddle will carry a saddlebag with essentials out on safari.

Riding ability

Different routes require different riding skills. For beginners, the rider must be able to walk and trot with the horse under control. Intermediate riders must be able to post the trot for a longer distance, be comfortable at all paces, and be able to gallop out of trouble. Experienced riders must be confident and comfortable at all paces over any terrain, ability to gallop for a longer distance, and if needed out of trouble. A fit and proficient rider is of big advantage out on safari.

Weight limit

Maximum weight is 85 kilograms (13.5 stones). Other arrangements could be organized subject to availability and would have to be requested well in advance.

Safety

Out on safari the lead guide is armed with either a bullwhip or a rifle/revolver, they communicate over radios and cell phones, with a mobile station in each vehicle, and a sat phone is always kept in camp.

Guiding

All guides are qualified and professionally trained, with good knowledge of Tanzania’s fauna and flora. A keen interest is taken in the smaller creatures as well as bigger games. The cultural visits bring in knowledge of medicinal and traditional beliefs about Tanzania’s trees and plants.

Groups

Mobile, multiple-day horse safaris, a maximum of 10 guests with exceptions for private bookings, where they can accommodate 15 riders maximum.

Time spent in the saddle

They aim to do between 4-6 hours in the saddle a day. During the rides, stop for drinks and refreshments and a three-hour lunch break, with time for a siesta. The terrain will vary and some legs will have to be done by foot, which is also a good opportunity to rest the horse’s back and loosen up the rider’s muscles.

Non-riders

For those who are not keen on horse riding or not confident enough, options for vehicle safaris and walking safaris can be arranged. Their itinerary will be tailored to individual needs and sample itineraries are available upon request.

Children

They do allow children, depending on their riding ability. They must be confident and strong enough to ride a full-sized horse.

Margarete Trappe

Africa’s greatest huntress - “Jeyo”... Mother of the Masai

“If, as children, we were thrilled by Buffalo Bill we should have been still more spellbound by Mrs. Trappe’s adventures, the adventures of the fearless woman with her two legendary horses, Comet and Diamond, and her two inseparable Alsatians. Like a phantom she would suddenly appear, like a phantom she would vanish; as intimate with wild beasts as though they were tame, she was venerated and feared by the locals like a supernatural being. The dark spirit of Africa with its spells and witchcraft, its magic, symbolism and ritual furnish a background against which such a figure almost assumes a mystic significance.

On this ride with Kaskazi Horse Safaris your ride in Arusha National Park, which is where Margerete lived until she passed away in 1957. On the ride we follow her old hidden pathways through the bush where this legendary lady rode on her two loyal thoroughbred mounts, always accompanied by her two Alsatians.

Margarete Trappe arrived on an ox wagon 1906 from the coast. Her courage and pioneering spirit set the tone when she travelled the picturesque Meru-Pass, at which her new home - Momella - was situated. A big farm was created and built by the Trappe family where they kept cattle, horses and goats and enjoyed the surroundings and the abundant wildlife.

The start of the First World War brought a cat-and-mouse game between Margarete Trappe and the English soldiers and earned her the nickname Iron Lady for her stubbornness, strength and courage as she scouted for Von Lettow Vorbeck in his “Ice Cream War” with Frederick Courtney Selous.However fate was not kind to Margarete. Disowned and bankrupt she returned to Meru and started rebuilding a new farm called Ngongongare or Yejo’s - her Maasai name.

Financial survival was however finally secured by highly profitable trophy hunting after she became the first female professional hunter in East Africa. Fittingly, her last tribute was paid by her beloved elephant herd as they gathered around her house in 1957 when she passed away. Margarete’s son Rolf leased the property to Paramount Pictures as the setting for the classic movie “Hatari”, starring John Wayne and Hardy Krüger.

Mrs. Trappe’s tales would fill an entire volume and this is not the place in which to tell them. All the same I cannot resist mentioning one episode, the one which marks the end of her wartime activities; it is such a charming story.

At that time the German defense forces had been compelled to withdraw into the interior. Under cover of darkness and forest, Mrs. Trappe had slipped through the British lines and delivered two large transports of cattle and provisions to General von Lettow. But a large convoy of horses led by tired German farmers had been surrounded by the British; there was scarcely a hope of getting it through.

Then Mrs. Trappe with her crew had taken over the whole operation. With the help of an alleged deserter she had misled the British as to the direction she had taken, had driven the horses through forests and over mountains where no one had dreamed it possible to find a way, and, without losing a single one, had brought them through the British lines.

Now she could do no more and was anxious to return to her farm where her three small children awaited her impatiently. She rode straight into the middle of the nearest British headquarters and gave herself up. A British Captain questioned her. A British General busy with his papers at a nearby table glanced across her now and again. The hearing dragged on. There was not much she would say. “You know, Mrs. Trappe, that you will have to be interned,” said the Captain finally. “Mrs. Trappe will remain at liberty,” the General stated, looking up from his papers.

The hearing continued. “You will have to leave your horses here,” said the Captain. Mrs. Trappe declared that she had promised General von Lettow to shoot the horses sooner than to surrender them to the British. “Mrs. Trappe will keep her horses,” said the General. Then they came to the arms. Here, certainly, there was nothing to be done. Mrs. Trappe was obliged to leave them and to undertake to bring along any ammunition in her possession. She brought the ammunition on the following day. When the British officer opened the chest in which the cartridges were packed, he also found a little box of silver rupees which Mrs. Trappe had forgotten to take out.

The British officer picked up the coins; all of them had a hole through the center. “What is the meaning of this?” he enquired curiously. “I shot those in a pistol-shooting contest,” Mrs. Trappe replied. “You must show us how you could do that,” said the General once again joining in. Three coins were placed upright on a board. They were hardly visible. Mrs. Trappe raised her pistol, took a swift aim and fired quickly once, twice, thrice. All three coins had been hit dead center. The General plunged his hand into the box of rupees. “Send these coins home to your wives,” he said to the group of officers who were watching, “and tell them your experiences here with a German woman.”

Then, turning to Mrs. Trappe: “You are a good sport and a brave woman.” He shook hands. “You may keep your weapons.” He smiled and took his leave. Mrs. Trappe kept her weapons and her horses. She rode home and settled down to look after her children and her huge farm. “

-From “MLA an African game paradise” by Maximilian von Rogister

Location

About Arusha National Park

The entrance gate leads into a shadowy montane forest inhabited by inquisitive blue monkeys and colorful turacos and trogons – the only place on the northern safari circuit where the acrobatic black-and-white colobus monkey is easily seen. In the midst of the forest stands the spectacular Ngurdoto Crater, whose steep, rocky cliffs enclose a wide marshy floor dotted with herds of buffalo and warthog.

Further north, rolling grassy hills enclose the tranquil beauty of the Momela Lakes, each one a different hue of green or blue. Their shallows are sometimes tinged pink with thousands of flamingos, the lakes support a rich selection of resident and migrant waterfowl, and shaggy waterbucks display their large lyre-shaped horns on the watery fringes.

Giraffes glide across the grassy hills, between grazing zebra herds, while pairs of wide-eyed dik-dik dart into scrubby bush like overgrown hares on spindly legs.

Although elephants are shy in Arusha National Park, and lions are absent altogether, leopards and spotted hyenas may be seen slinking around in the early morning and late afternoon. It is also at dusk and dawn that the veil of cloud on the eastern horizon is most likely to clear, revealing the majestic snow-capped peaks of Kilimanjaro, only 50 kilometers (30 miles) distant.

But it is Kilimanjaro’s unassuming cousin, Mount Meru - the fifth highest in Africa at 4,566 meters (14,990 feet) – that dominates the park’s horizon. Its peaks and eastern foot slopes protected within the national park, Meru offers unparalleled views of its famous neighbor, while also forming a rewarding hiking destination in its own right.

Passing first through wooded savannah where buffalos and giraffes are frequently encountered, the ascent of Meru leads into forests aflame with red-hot pokers and dripping with Spanish moss, before reaching high open heath spiked with giant lobelias. Everlasting flowers cling to the alpine desert, as delicately- hoofed klipspringers mark the hike’s progress. Astride the craggy summit, Kilimanjaro stands unveiled, blushing in the sunrise.

Routes and the terrain

The terrain varies from place to place, everything from open savannah, acacia woodland, and Doum Palm forests to really thick vegetation. Open savannah caters to long, adrenaline-thrilling gallops while in the thick bush, all ears and eyes must be alert for any game you might encounter.

Depending on climate and rainfall, you will cross riverbeds and ride along the shores of beautiful lakes. Apart from game viewing the landscape and the scenery mustn’t be forgotten, the rides are in some of the most spectacular areas in Africa.

Climate

Tanzania lies just south of the equator and on the whole, enjoys a tropical climate. There are two rainy seasons, the short and the long rains. The long rains called Masika fall from mid-march to May, and the shorter rains called Mvuli fall from November to mid-January. The cooler climate is during the dry season and lasts from May to October.

Food

The food is of great standard with professionally-trained bush chefs. The chefs create delicious and highly entertaining dishes, breakfast is of traditional cowboy style, served with juice and exotic African fruits. Lunch is alfresco, enjoyed somewhere out in the wild under a nice shady tree, it may either be vehicle supported or you may carry it in your saddlebags. Dinner is a three-course affair, with a mix of local and international cuisine, always served with newly baked bread and fresh salads and herbs.

Drinks

Drinks are locally sourced and a large variety is brought along on safari.

The following meals are included:

  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
  • Drinks

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

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

What's included

  • 3 nights accommodation (1 night at a permanent lodge on the night upon arrival and 2 nights in the mobile camp)
  • All meals daily (lunch upon arrival and breakfast upon departure)
  • Drinks
  • Qualified private guide
  • Use of horses
  • 4 days of riding
  • WD (Wildlife Department) fees
  • Arusha National Park fees

What's not included

  • International flights
  • Drinks at the lodge
  • Transfers from and to the airport
  • Gratuities for the camp team and guides (guideline of 25-35 USD per guest per day)
  • Any personal purchases
  • Visas, medical and travel insurance, which has to be arranged prior to arrival
  • Government fees: 550 USD per person (In the event of a change in government taxes, levies, concession/wildlife/community fees, Kaskazi Horse Safaris reserves the right to pass on any increase)

How to get there

Recommended Airports

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 30 days before arrival.
4 days / 3 nights
from --
Minimum group size

This trip requires a minimum of 4 participants

Availability

Arrival: Friday August 30, 2024
Departure: Monday September 2, 2024

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