Introduction to Trail Riding in Peneda Gerês

Northern Portugal Portugal: (IT-PTPGBE)
URL: https://www.hiddentrails.com/tour/portugal_peneda_geres_trail_ride_introduction.aspx

Introduction
Northern Portugal Portugal
This tour caters to novice riders who want to try their hand at trail riding in a secure environment (experienced guides) and surrounded by beautiful landscapes. 

Peneda Gerês National Park is located in northern Portugal, at the border with the region of Galicia in Spain. It is considered one of the wildest places in Portugal and features some stunning landscapes. Due to its unique characteristics and its considerable nature conservation efforts, this park has been declared a Biosphere reserve by UNESCO.

The program will starts off with the basics of horseback riding (how to behave around a horse, how to lead a horse on foot...) and will teach you more and more every day, ending with a beautiful day ride in the mountains, including short sections of trots and canter!

Accomodation

Accommodations

This is a stationary ride so all nights are spent at the same location.

Description
You will sleep in a traditional mountain house, located in the historic village of Castro Laboreiro in the Peneda-Gerês National Park, and surrounded by pure nature. The house was built in the early 20th century and recently restored. The owners maintained the original features of the house (stonewalls, wooden doors...), but they equipped it with all modern comforts (central heating, fireplace, free WIFI & TV with cable channels) to enable visitors a pleasant stay.
There are 6 bedrooms (all with private bathrooms) featuring homemade toiletries made with local goat milk and lavender.



In the garden, surrounded by a beautiful Oak forest, you will find the ideal place for your morning breakfast or to read a good book.

Room Occupancy
If we are unable to find another rider to share the room with you, the single supplement fee does apply.



Meals
The package includes all meals. 
We serve gourmet Portuguese traditional recipes accompanied by an excellent selection of Portuguese wine.

Breakfasts feature our locally produced honey and homemade jams and marmalades as well as many other delicious foods.

Dietary Restrictions
We can cater to most dietary restrictions with advance notice.

This trip includes and can accommodate special dietary requests.

Riding

Your hosts are both journalists with a passion for the environment and nature conservation. In 1999, they decided to broaden their horizons and began a long-term project to study a family of Iberian Wolves and produce a documentary on the species for Portuguese television. They provide a warm and welcoming atmosphere and look forward to sharing their passion for this magnificent region with their guests.

Itinerary


Sample Itinerary - subject to changes

Note: Please note, the following itinerary description might change due to the weather or other conditions.

Day 1 (Sunday): Arrival 
Transfers from the airport to the village of Castro Laboreiro, where our guesthouse is located. Welcome dinner.
Meals included: Dinner
Overnight at Guesthouse

Day 2 (Monday): Basics of Horseback Riding & Peneda Gerês National Park
We will start by a lesson on how to approach horses, including security rules and horse behaviors. We will then go on our first ride to learn the basics. 
We have our lunch in a local restaurant
This afternoon, we go visit the reception center of the National Park for better knowledge about the region and the biodiversity of this natural area.
Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
Overnight at Guesthouse


Day 3 (Tuesday): Introduction to the Mountains
We will start the day by a short ride in the mountain (walk only) and will stop for a picnic near the river.
Later on, we will go for a small walk in the mountain for relaxation.
Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
Overnight at Guesthouse


Day 4 (Wednesday): Riding Lesson & Wine Tasting
This morning, we teach you how to put the halter and how to lead the horse on foot. Then, we have a small lesson to learn the trot technique.
Lunch is spent in a local restaurant.
After the break, we visit Melgaço village with its castle and old churches. On the way back, we stop in Alvarinho presentation center to try out their wonderful fresh local white wine. A typical Portuguese wine, the Alvarinho cast is both one of the most important varieties of the Tart Wine Region and one of the most internationally prized.
Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
Overnight at Guesthouse


Day 5 (Thursday): Full Day Ride
Today, we will leave for our first full day ride in the mountain. We will mix walking and trotting.
We stop for our picnic break somewhere in the mountains.
Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
Overnight at Guesthouse


Day 6 (Friday): Morning Visit & First Canter
Morning visit to Castro Laboreiro medieval Castle and to Peneda pilgrimage Sanctuary and village. This huge and beautiful sanctuary in the middle of the mountain was built in 18th century.
Lunch in Laboreiro river near a natural pool with a extraordinary roman bridge. Swimming in the natural pool is possible.
This afternoon, riding lesson focused on canter technique
Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
Overnight at Guesthouse


Day 7 (Saturday): Mountain Ride
To end your stay, we will for a full day ride in the mountain (walk, trot and canter). We take our lunch in the mountain.
We end the day with a relaxing walk in and look for herds of wild Garrano horses
Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
Overnight at Guesthouse


Day 8 (Sunday): Departure
Transfer to the airport.
Meals included: Breakfast


Rates and Dates for Introduction to Trail Riding in Peneda Gerês

Rates include:

Accommodation, All meals, 6 riding days & Airport transfers

Packages and Options



  • SeasonYearDescriptionEUR ~US$
    A
    20238 day trip, AP€1760$1815
The US Dollar Rate is Based on Exchange Rate of 1.03

* prices are per person based on double/twin occupancy

Transfer and Other Charges:



 DescriptionEUR~US$
2023 Transfers from/to Porto airport included 0 $0
2023 Single supplement 175 $180

Season Tour Dates  Min / MaxReserve
A 2023 04/01 - 04/08 8d / 7n 8 day trip, AP 1 /6 Reserve
A 2023 04/08 - 04/15 8d / 7n 8 day trip, AP 1 /6 Reserve
A 2023 04/15 - 04/22 8d / 7n 8 day trip, AP 1 /6 Reserve
A 2023 04/22 - 04/29 8d / 7n 8 day trip, AP 1 /6 Reserve
A 2023 04/29 - 05/06 8d / 7n 8 day trip, AP 1 /6 Reserve
A 2023 05/06 - 05/13 8d / 7n 8 day trip, AP 1 /6 Reserve
A 2023 05/13 - 05/20 8d / 7n 8 day trip, AP 1 /6 Reserve
A 2023 05/20 - 05/27 8d / 7n 8 day trip, AP 1 /6 Reserve
A 2023 05/27 - 06/03 8d / 7n 8 day trip, AP 1 /6 Reserve
A 2023 06/03 - 06/10 8d / 7n 8 day trip, AP 1 /6 Reserve
A 2023 06/10 - 06/17 8d / 7n 8 day trip, AP 1 /6 Reserve
A 2023 06/17 - 06/24 8d / 7n 8 day trip, AP 1 /6 Reserve
A 2023 06/24 - 07/01 8d / 7n 8 day trip, AP 1 /6 Reserve
A 2023 07/01 - 07/08 8d / 7n 8 day trip, AP 1 /6 Reserve
A 2023 07/08 - 07/15 8d / 7n 8 day trip, AP 1 /6 Reserve
A 2023 07/15 - 07/22 8d / 7n 8 day trip, AP 1 /6 Reserve
A 2023 07/22 - 07/29 8d / 7n 8 day trip, AP 1 /6 Reserve
A 2023 07/29 - 08/05 8d / 7n 8 day trip, AP 1 /6 Reserve
A 2023 08/05 - 08/12 8d / 7n 8 day trip, AP 1 /6 Reserve
A 2023 08/12 - 08/19 8d / 7n 8 day trip, AP 1 /6 Reserve
A 2023 08/19 - 08/26 8d / 7n 8 day trip, AP 1 /6 Reserve
A 2023 08/26 - 09/02 8d / 7n 8 day trip, AP 1 /6 Reserve
A 2023 09/02 - 09/09 8d / 7n 8 day trip, AP 1 /6 Reserve
A 2023 09/09 - 09/16 8d / 7n 8 day trip, AP 1 /6 Reserve
A 2023 09/16 - 09/23 8d / 7n 8 day trip, AP 1 /6 Reserve
A 2023 09/23 - 09/30 8d / 7n 8 day trip, AP 1 /6 Reserve
A 2023 09/30 - 10/07 8d / 7n 8 day trip, AP 1 /6 Reserve
A 2023 10/07 - 10/14 8d / 7n 8 day trip, AP 1 /6 Reserve
A 2023 10/14 - 10/21 8d / 7n 8 day trip, AP 1 /6 Reserve
A 2023 10/21 - 10/28 8d / 7n 8 day trip, AP 1 /6 Reserve
A 2023 10/28 - 11/04 8d / 7n 8 day trip, AP 1 /6 Reserve
A 2023 11/04 - 11/11 8d / 7n 8 day trip, AP 1 /6 Reserve
A 2023 11/11 - 11/18 8d / 7n 8 day trip, AP 1 /6 Reserve
A 2023 11/18 - 11/25 8d / 7n 8 day trip, AP 1 /6 Reserve
A 2023 11/25 - 12/02 8d / 7n 8 day trip, AP 1 /6 Reserve

Dates Note: * custom tour dates possible by request - please inquire for availability and rate

Rates do not include:

Gratuities

Other Info
Meeting: Castro Laboreiro
Airport: Porto
Transfer: Porto Airport

Climate:
                                                      Arcos de Valdevez area


Month

Jan

Feb

Mar

Apr

May

Jun

Jul

Aug

Sep

Oct

Nov

Dec

Average High Temperature (°F)

58 

60

63 

65 

69

76

79

79 

76

69

63 

59 

Average Low Temperature (°F)

42 

43 

46 

48 

52 

57

60 

59

57

52 

47 

44 

Average High Temperature (°C)

14 

15 

17

18

21 

24

26

26

25

21 

17

15 

Average Low Temperature (°C)

5

6 

8

9

11

14

15 

15

14

11

8

7

Average Precipitation (days of rain)

14

12

10

12

11

6

4

3

7

11

12

14

Source: NOAA

Seasons
Due to the oceanic influence, the annual average temperature in the region is around 13ºC. The highest temperatures occur between July and September, while the lowest correspond to the period between December and February. However, risk of frost remains high during almost all year long in the mountains (during early morning / late night).
The further inland you go, the more the climate tends to become 'continental' (hot in summer and cold in winter), with a decrease in rainfall. On another hand, as you gain altitude, there is an increase in precipitation risk and a decrease in temperatures.

What To Bring:
We suggest that you bring:
- Comfortable clothes for riding
- Good boots and/or shoes to walk and ride (the best are the trail ride boots). If you buy them new for this holiday make sure that you use them the most you can before you came.
- Helmet (not mandatory but recommended). Some available to lend but we recommend you use your own.
- Light raining clothes. Our tours only run between April and November to avoid the bad weather but we are in the mountains, so changes can occur quickly.
- Water bottles. If possible, bring 2 smaller bottles instead of one big bottle.  Your saddle bags will be more balance in the saddle.
- Some warm clothes for the evenings
- Swimming suit. We have a beautiful natural pool in the river at 2 minutes walk from the house.
- Sun cream
- Hat

To avoid any possibility of spreading some horse disease, please don´t bring any riding clothes that haven't been washed before your stay with us.
We also ask that you do not bring spurs or whip. If, for some reason, your guide decides that you need to use a whip he will give you one.
 
This list is only a guideline for you

 

Travel documents and Voucher
Flight tickets
Passport
Visa (check with your consulate)

 

RIDING GEAR
Cotton shirts with long sleeves (protection against the sun!)
Riding pants or Jodhpurs (used if possible!)
Riding boots + Minichaps
Riding helmet (recommended for all trips)
Riding gloves
Hat (with chin strap) for sun protection
Rain coat

 

PERSONAL CLOTHING
Jacket or sweater for cool evenings
Comfortable T-Shirts/Shirts
Jeans
Shorts
Underwear and socks
Jogging suit / Pyjama
Light summer jacket
Comfortable shoes/sneakers
Swimsuit and towel
 
ADDITIONAL THINGS TO BRING
Personal Toiletries
Insect protection
Personal medications
Sore cream (for an emergency)
Sewing kit
Handkerchiefs
Adapter for electric appliances
Camera and enough extra films
Small bag to buckle on (for small items needed during the ride)
Spur straps (to tie sweater or parka onto the saddle)
Sun glasses with strap
Sun tan lotion and lip balm
Flash light