Top 10 Horseback Riding Vacations in Asia
Asia has a rich equestrian history dating back many millennia. The Mongol hordes and the Imperial Chinese were all brilliant horsemen and the traditions run deep to this day. Nomadic tribes still run rampant across the Mongolian steppe while the Himalayan while the organized tours run orderly throughout the Himalayan foothills. While the islands of the South Pacific are mostly small, the vast beaches make for a romantic ride even if for a brief while.
- Karakorum, Mongolia
Central Mongolia’s Khangai Mountain range is the desolate, rugged, difficult wilderness that many have waited their lives to ride. You’ll pass Stone Age tribes who haven’t changed a bit for thousands of years and monasteries lost amid the steppe. Time your trip right and you’ll hit the Naadam festival in Ulaan Baatar.
- Snowy River, Australia.
This is the Aussie Wild West. The land of Ned Kelly. Apart from the wildlife -roos, wild horses, wombats, and emus -you’ll traverse the terrain from the film of The Man From Snowy River.
- Rajasthan, India
Although camel riding is better known in India’s western Great Thar Desert, a vibrant horse culture is just as important here. The crumbling cities of once vicious Maharajas and the dusty mountains of the Aravalli Range provide a backdrop to indulge in every 1,001 Nights fantasy.
- North Island, New Zealand
This lush green landscape doesn’t need Peter Jackson-like special effects. While staying in farmhouses and inns, you’ll come to geysers, volcanic crater lakes, snow capped mountains, and rivers overflowing with the world’s purest strain of Brown Trout.
- Matsushima Bay, Japan
The pine filled islands that are sprinkled out from Mastushima Bay in the Tohoku region house one of Japan’s most important Zen Monasteries, as well as many well ridden trails.
- Tahiti, French Polynesia
Riding horses along the beaches of French Polynesia have long added to the allure of this romantic isle. A moonlight trot is a great way to begin your honeymoon.
- Oodnadatta Track, Australia
Often beginning in Oodnadatta and ending in Maree, this is an intense cattle drive over the most poetic of Aussie terrains. Scrubland, parched riverbeds, and the dusty red earth of the Outback are what every cowboy and girl dreams of.
- Central Regions, Tibet
While China has taken over much of the cities and villages, the nomads and tribes of the Tibetan Plateau have managed to maintain their traditional way of life. Come during the first three days in August for the Litang Festival, a celebration of Tibetan culture with horse races, games, dances, and demonstrations.
- The Steppe, Kazakhstan
The Kazakhs, who are naturally gifted horsemen, actually invented stirrups and the chariot. Riding is in their blood and local guides will help guide you across the dry grasslands that dominates a third of the country.
- Bali, Indonesia
Exploring the lush tropical island sprinkled with Hindu temples and rice terraces via horse gives you a whole new perspective on traditional Balinese life. While others are stuck eating sushi and surfing at Kuta beach, you’ll betrothing along cloudy mountain trails and the empty north side beaches.