Take exquisite South African wine country, dramatic Cape mountains and orchards, tastings on exclusive wine estates, luxury accommodation and spa, and vibrant local culture and cuisine, all just 40 minutes from the Cape Town International Airport. Add highly skilled professional riders and passionate tour guides, a stable of exceptional horses for riders of all levels and you have the makings of an unforgettable riding holiday that will leave you wanting more. Cape Winelands Riding is the equestrian adventure you will come back to time and again.

Situated in the heart of the Cape winelands in an area steeped in history, culture and known for its fine wine and dining, Cape Winelands Riding offers riding holidays with a difference.

From long mountain treks, gallops through magnificent vineyards, lazy days wine tasting on local estates, indulgent spa treatments or sampling local culture, we turn ordinary holidays into once in a lifetime equestrian experiences, with one of the richest wine regions in the world as the backdrop.

The Cape Winelands Riding team is led by Louis Geyer. An avid rider, Louis has a passion for people and sharing his extensive knowledge. Having spent time with great horsemen observing and understanding how they think, Louis has developed a rich insight and sensitivity towards horses and their personalities which he puts to good use managing a herd of horses suited to horseback holidays for riders of all skill levels. For Louis, gentle horsemanship is a way of life and it filters through into every part of Cape Winelands Riding.

Louis, a certified tour guide with a Bachelor of Science degree in natural sciences and post graduate studies in education, has an intimate knowledge of the region’s history and wildlife. After horses, his particular passion is birding and local wildlife and he is happiest when outdoors. Louis lives by the motto, "What we have is not ours but has been given to us to share. If we keep it to ourselves we will lose it." As such, the desire to consistently learn, share and enlighten means the role of guiding and mentorship in the field comes naturally to Louis.

The horses

Our herd of horses aren't just horses, they are our family – their comfort and wellbeing a priority on a par with that of our guests. Our horses are gentle souls for riders of all levels and are schooled for both the holiday trails as well as understanding flat work. We also invest heavily in quality tack to give both the rider and the horse a comfortable ride.

We mostly use trail saddles on our long rides but also have English style General Purpose saddles for those who feel more comfortable with classical tack.

The wearing of hard hats is compulsory so we do suggest that you bring your own although we do keep a supply for those who prefer to travel light.

Our horses consist of a wide variety of breeds from Warmbloods to Thoroughbreds as well as a mixture of local breeds. We have Friesian, American Saddler, Arab, Shire, Boerperd, Nooitgedacht, Basotho Pony, Thoroughbred, Appaloosa and many more different cross breeds. All chosen or bred for their nature and personality as well as versatility and work rate.

 

Guests

We accept groups of up to eight people. These smaller groups allow us to maintain the high quality and personalised riding safaris that Cape Winelands Riding is renowned for. We do accommodate beginners but the recommended level of experience for our riding holidays is intermediate to advanced. Riders of similar experience are generally grouped together. We will also accept single riders.

 

Your stay

Our holidays have no fixed dates so you may arrive and depart on any day however we strongly recommend a minimum of five night stay. For us flexibility is paramount to client satisfaction.

Guests have the option to tailor their itinerary as they wish. See our Sample Itinerary page and get a feel for the different rides on offer and local attractions near Stellenbosch and Franschhoek, from which you can 'mix and match' trails, wine tastings and other excursions to build your very own dream riding holiday.

The riding terrain is soft underfoot and mostly along old tractor routes through the vineyards, orchards and forests. There are mountain climbs with magnificent views as well as ample flat areas for comfortable canters as well as the odd full gallop for those wanting to experience the freedom on horseback to the full.

 

Accommodation

Cape Winelands Riding offers three different accommodation types, allowing you to tailor your riding holiday to your personal tastes and budgets. Choose from a five-star luxury boutique lodge, a four-star/mid-range wine estate guest house or homely onsite farm accommodation. No matter the accommodation choice, the package (the rides, wine tastings and other local excursions) are the same for all our guests. If you’re looking for variety, book two of the accommodation choices to sample even more of this breathtakingly beautiful area!