Top Horse Riding Holiday Destinations in Eastern Europe

Whether preferring fast-paced rides in Albania or challenging trails in Poland, there's something for all levels of rider in Eastern Europe

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Top Horse Riding Destinations in Eastern Europe

There is a wide array of fantastic horse riding holidays in Eastern Europe, each with its own charm and offering different experiences. This region features various landscapes, from rugged mountains to vast plains, and everything in between. And the best way to explore it all? From horseback on one of our horse riding holidays!

Horse riding holidays in Eastern Europe
Riding the mountain trails in Eastern Europe

With a rich tradition of horseback riding, Eastern Europe is a paradise for equestrian enthusiasts seeking an unforgettable adventure. Whether preferring fast-paced rides in Albania or challenging trails in Poland, there’s something for all levels of rider. Moreover, this region provides excellent value for money, making it a budget-friendly choice for those in search of a distinctive journey. Join us as we delve into some of Eastern Europe’s beautiful, yet underappreciated regions.

Our Top Picks for Horse Riding Holidays in Eastern Europe

Albania
Nestled in the heart of the Balkans, Albania may be one of the best-kept secrets of southeastern Europe. With its breathtaking landscapes and rich cultural heritage, it’s no wonder that it attracts tourists from all over the world. However, in recent years, Albania has also been gaining popularity as an equestrian destination. With a terrain that ranges from towering mountains to pristine beaches, riders can expect a one-of-a-kind experience as they traverse the Albanian countryside. Not only does Albania offer a variety of picturesque views, but it is also steeped in ancient traditions and cultures. From its wonderful Mediterranean climate to the colder, snowier mountainous regions, there is something to suit everybody in Albania.

The Top Horse Riding Holiday Destinations in Eastern Europe
Cresting a rise in Albania

Albania is also an excellent destination for fast-paced, adventurous horseback vacations. Amongst the horse riding holidays on offer in Albania are the Wild River Trail, and the Ancient Pathways. The Wild River Trail is the ultimate adventure for those looking to explore the rugged terrain. With 11 nights of trekking through mountainous landscapes on native horses, this trail takes riders off the beaten track to experience rural Albanian culture. Along the way, you’ll stay with local families, tasting homemade meals and learning about ancient caravan routes. This is a challenging ride, and not for the faint-hearted, with five to seven-hour riding days over varied terrain leading to swimming spots, river hiking, canyon exploring, and visits to fascinating cultural monuments. This trail is perfect for intermediate and advanced riders who are fit, adventurous, and ready to embrace new experiences.

The Top Horse Riding Holiday Destinations in Eastern Europe
Following ancient Pathways

The Ancient Pathways Trail offers an exciting equestrian adventure that will take riders back in time. This circular route follows the medieval Zagoria caravan pathways through a land filled with myths, tales and ballads. Beginning in Gjiroksater, riders will journey through the ancient ruins of the Illyrian civilization, past medieval villages, remote churches, and monasteries. Experience Albanian traditions firsthand along the way by staying with local families and riding through the vibrant, unspoiled natural landscapes. The horses used on this trail are a local breed mix of Tarpan and Arab. They’re small, surefooted, and perfectly suited to the rocky terrain, making for a safe and enjoyable ride. With a choice of five exciting rides, Albania is a must-visit destination.

Croatia
Croatia’s long-standing horse tradition and lush green terrain make it a fantastic destination for an equestrian vacation. Experienced riders can explore the country’s varied terrain, from large flat plains with dramatic mountain backdrops, to pristine beaches and ancient forestland. With its tranquil landscapes and buzzing cities, Croatia offers something of interest for everyone. What’s more, a horse riding holiday in Croatia is the perfect way to experience areas that the wider tourist industry normally miss.

Top Horse Riding Holiday Destinations in Eastern Europe
Fast riding on the Dalmatian Mountain Explorer

Saddle up and experience the spectacular mountain interior of the Dalmatian region on our Dalmatian Mountain Explorer trail. For experienced horse riders, this equestrian break offers fast, thrilling riding through gentle slopes and wide valleys, making it the ideal horse country. Instead of being confined to the traditional tourist hotspots, you’ll have the opportunity to explore the Dalmatian countryside, riding down old Roman roads and seldom-traveled cattle paths. Our friendly and knowledgeable hosts will be on hand to guide you through the villages where tourism is still rare, providing a unique insight into Croatian culture and hospitality. And when you’re not in the saddle, indulge in delicious homemade food and wines.

Poland
Poland is another fascinating Eastern European destination for a horse riding holiday. With a rich culture and history, horse riding is deeply ingrained in the country’s traditions. Vast expanses of open countryside and varied terrain offer plenty of opportunities for confident intermediate riders to get their horse-riding fix. Whether trekking through stunning forests, past serene lakes, or over rolling hills, an equestrian vacation in Poland has something for every type of rider. Get to meet local riders and sample traditional Polish cuisine while experiencing  the  country’s rich culture

Top Horse Riding Holiday Destinations in Eastern Europe
Swimming the horses in Poland

Escape the hustle and bustle of city life with the Drawski Lake District ride. Take in the majestic landscapes on horseback while venturing through beautiful countryside. Located in a 19th-century manor house, the estate is a part of the “slow food” movement – a commitment to organic food and traditional regional cuisine. In addition to horseback riding, choose from a full riding program or a less strenuous schedule, so leaving plenty of time for lakeside relaxation, water activities, massages, and sauna treatments. On the ride, you’ll be joined by Anglo-Arabs and Silesians, local warm-blood breeds, galloping along the rolling hills. With the Drawski Landscape Park as a playground, expect to encounter rich flora and fauna every step of the way.

The Top Horse Riding Holiday Destinations in Eastern Europe
Beautiful Bulgaria – A horse rider’s dream

Bulgaria
Explore one of the best-kept secrets in Eastern Europe on one of Unicorn Trails’ exciting horse riding holiday packages in Bulgaria. In the mountains it is easy to forget about traffic, budgets, and time. Bulgaria boasts some of the freshest air and clearest rivers in Europe, and they are just waiting to be discovered.

Top Horse Riding Holiday Destinations in Eastern Europe
Kingdom of the Thracians trail

Although an urbanised country, Bulgaria holds a strong equestrian tradition and has vast open spaces that are ideal for horseback riding. The country’s mountain ranges, including the central Balkan range, dominate the landscape and offer a truly unforgettable experience. The varying regions of Bulgaria still hold onto their unique customs, dialects, and folklore, making this a fascinating cultural holiday

Our Kingdom of the Thracians and Valley of Roses trail in Bulgaria offers the opportunity to combine horseback riding with cultural exploration. The picturesque terrain of rose and lavender fields provides a breathtaking backdrop for an exhilarating ride. This trail combines plenty of canters while taking in historic ruins from ancient Thracian and Roman times that history enthusiasts will appreciate. Along the way, riders can indulge in delicious wines and even take advantage of spa opportunities thanks to the restorative mineral springs. Comfortable hotels await at each stop, complete with swimming pools, saunas, and spas to soothe any aches and pains. With visits to Plovdiv and Hissar, this trail promises to captivate and inspire even the most seasoned of travelers.

Top Horse Riding Holiday Destinations in Eastern Europe
Riding through misty forests in Bulgaria

Another of Unicorn’s equestrian vacations in Bulgaria is the exciting Three Peak Mountain trails that run through three gorgeous mountain ranges in Bulgaria – Plana, Verila and Rila. This fast-paced tour takes riders on a journey through stunning forests, hidden valleys, and wide-open meadows in one of the most remote and beautiful regions of virgin forest and mountain scenery. While exploring the diverse terrain, riders visit sun-drenched villages where friendly hospitality awaits at every turn. Encounter red deer, rabbits, foxes, hedgehogs, wild boars, and numerous birdlife in this wild and sparsely populated landscape. The ride is ideal for Intermediate riders upward, spending up to 6 hours a day in the saddle while traversing steep and challenging terrain.

The Top Horse Riding Holiday Destinations in Eastern Europe
The lush greenery of Montenegro

Montenegro
Book a horseback riding holiday in Montenegro and discover this unspoiled jewel of a country for yourself! Nestled between Albania, Bosnia, and Yugoslavia, it has a gorgeous coastline on the Adriatic Sea.  Further inland are huge mountain landscapes of breathtaking beauty and pristine wilderness, emerald-clear mountain lakes, National Parks, and the second-largest Canyon in the world.  Unicorn Trails’ Mountain & Lake Ride gives advanced novice and intermediate equestrian riders a chance to explore summer pastures, through meadows full of wildflowers and berries. Expect a new dramatic view, or ridge to crest, around each new corner. This horse riding holiday in Montenegro is in big sky country, and the remote location provides exceptional night sky viewing

Romania
Famous for the forested region of Transylvania, Romania is ringed by the Carpathian Mountains. Medieval towns and fortified churches and castles abound, notably the clifftop Bran Castle, long associated with the Dracula legend. A horse riding holiday in Romania is a chance to experience this fascinating country of modern and ancient contrasts firsthand.

Top Horse Riding Holiday Destinations in Eastern Europe
Romania – Riding in a land of deep traditions

The Carpathian Estate Ride follows a 7-day trail, hosted by a 25th generation Count on an estate that spans several villages and nature preserves, largely untouched by society. The rolling grasslands and complete lack of fences mean that everywhere is accessible, allowing complete freedom to ride without obstructions. Spend 3-5 hours a day exploring a variety of terrains in and around the ancient Erd vidék (woodlands), ending the riding day relaxing in wood-fired saltwater hot tubs.

Conclusion

Top Horse Riding Holiday Destinations in Eastern Europe
Riding coastal paths

In conclusion, horse riding holidays in Eastern Europe are a great option for those seeking adventure and exceptional value for their money. The scenic landscapes provide a picturesque backdrop for anyone who is looking to combine horse riding with exploring new cultures. See majestic historic sites, stunning coasts, rolling hills and so much more while experiencing Eastern Europe on horseback.

At Unicorn Trails, horse riding is not just a business, but a passion. This is why we are the perfect partner for planning horse riding holidays in Eastern Europe. Our team of dedicated equestrians has extensive knowledge and experience in the equestrian world, which we are more than eager to share with all our clients. Our range of packages has been carefully curated to cater to the needs of every type of rider, whether you are looking for an exhilarating mountain trail experience or cultural exploration.

So, why wait? Contact us today and book your dream horse riding holidays in Eastern Europe!

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