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Spain - Sierra Nevada Trail Rides
Explore a stunning region of Spain, the Sierra Nevada Mountains, and marvel at the natural beauty while riding on horseback

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Horse Riding Holidays Spain – Sierra Nevada Trail Rides

PRICES & DATES top

Sierra Nevada Trail Rides : 2017

Rates are quoted per person sharing. Sierra Nevada Trail Rides are a set departure date holidays.

La Alpujarra – £1,145/€1,345/$1,405
Single supplement – £140/€165/$172

6 – 13 May, 20 – 27 May
12 – 19 July
26 Aug – 2 Sep
9 – 16 Sep

El Marquisado – £1,250/€1,470/$1,535
Single supplement – £149/€175/$183

10 – 17 June, 25 June – 2 July

La Bueno Vista – £1,250/€1,470/$1,535
Single supplement – £149/€175/$183

2 – 9 July & 16 – 23 July

Contraviesa Trail – £1,145/€1,345/$1,405
Single supplement – £140/€165/$172

18 – 25 Mar
1- 8 Apr, 22 – 29 Apr
23 – 30 Sep
7 – 14 Oct. 21 – 28 Oct
4 – 11 Nov, 18 -25 Nov

Short Break Dates – £465/€550/$575
Single supplement – £64/€75/$78
30 Mar – 4 Apr
14 – 18 May
3 – 7 Aug, 20 – 24 Aug
3 – 8 Sep

Included – All riding,  full board twin accommodation except dinner on one night, and transfers from Malaga to the start of the ride and back at set times with the group.

Excluded – Flights, dinner on one night, bar bills & tips.

Sierra Nevada Trail Rides : Getting There
International flight to Malaga.

Transfer
Transfer time is 2 and a half hours from Malaga and there is a scheduled transfer pick up and drop off included in the ride rate. Arrival must be pre 4pm on the Sunday, and drop off’s are no later than midday.

All our horse riding holidays hold a price guarantee. We believe in your piece of mind on price when you book one of our horse riding holidays and will refund the difference should you find the same horse riding holiday elsewhere at a lower price.

SUMMARY OF THE TRIP top

The Sierra Nevada is the highest mountain range in Spain, situated South of Granada. This horse riding holiday in Spain gives you a chance to explore a stunning region of natural beauty on horseback, riding through an ever changing landscape where no two valleys, ravines or summits are alike.

Little has changed in this part of Spain over the centuries, the mule and ox still pull the plough in the tiny terraced fields, the horse and mule still provide transport and the shepherd still tends his flock of sheep on the mountainside.

Starting from Bubion, Sierra Nevada Trail Rides follow ancient Moorish drovers’ paths through steep valleys filled with Mediterranean almond and walnut groves up to high summer pastures irrigated by the snow melt. You pass through pretty white villages with narrow winding streets and ancient Moorish architecture. On some of the very steep descents it is necessary to lead the horses and these rides are not for those who suffer from vertigo.

In spring and autumn the Contraviesa Ride goes from village to village following a route through the lower foothills of the Contraviesa range. In mid-summer, the Alpujarra Ride follows a similar route but ventures higher into the sierra and the Marquesdao Ride goes higher still, crossing right over the mountain range. The 4 & 5 night short breaks are offered on set dates throughout the season.

The horses are Andalusian and Andalusian crosses and have all been expertly schooled by their owner and your guide Dallas Love. They are fit, sure-footed and responsive with the classic good nature of the breed; they enjoy their work and are real pleasure to ride over this steep terrain.

THE RIDING top

Sierra Nevada Trail Rides : Horses – Andalusians & Andalusian Crosses. All of them have been trained in basic dressage moves, therefore you can expect a really lovely responsive ride. You are expected to tack and untack your horse each day.

Sierra Nevada Trail Rides : Level of Riding & Pace – Intermediate to Advanced.
There are long days in the saddle, and we would advise a certain level of fitness to enjoy this holiday fully. There are also steep ascents & descents, which mean walking with the horses on a some occasions. You should also be comfortable with heights, as some of the paths are steep, with long drops below.

Tack – English.

Siearra Nevada Trail Rides : Weight Restriction – 13 Stone / 84 kg / 182 lbs.

Sierra Nevada Trail Rides : Group Size – Maximum 12.

ACCOMMODATION top

There is a mix of small village hostels (‘Posadas’) and comfortable local hotels. The hotels vary in size and style but all of them are family run, simple and small. The rooms are clean and comfortable, and have small en suite loo and shower or a bath. There’s no need to worry about luggage, this is transported from hotel to hotel by vehicle.

Breakfasts on the Sierra Nevada Trail Rides are continental style and dinners are Spanish style using fresh, local produce and eaten at the hotels, except on one evening (two evenings on the short breaks) where you are free to choose your own restaurants for dinner. Lunches are usually picnics out riding, with fresh breads, local cheeses, cured hams, and salads.

Horse Riding Holidays like our Sierra Nevada Trail Rides are part of the Zara’s Planet collection of Horse Riding Holidays Spain.

SAMPLE ITINERARY top

Sierra Nevada Trail Rides : The Contraviesa Ride

This runs in Spring and Autumn and takes you through the lower Contraviesa mountain range which lies between the Sierra Nevada and the Mediterranean. Due to the proximity of the coast the climate is warmer and more arid than higher up in the Sierra Nevada. On this trail you ride through the mountains to a new village each day, including spending a night in Trevelez, the highest village in Spain.

DAY 1

You will be met in Malaga usually at about 16.00 and driven to Bubion, a village in the Sierra Nevada mountains. Dinner and overnight in a village hotel.

DAY 2

Driven a short way to the stables to meet the horses. Set off riding following mule tracks through open country and woodland then broad forest tracks to reach Trevelez, the highest village in Spain. Dinner and night in Trevelez.

DAY 3

Breakfast and ride on through oak forest and out onto open pastures with wonderful views of the Contraviesa range. Continue to the village of Berchules where you will stop for the night. Dinner and night in a hotel in Berchules.

DAY 4

Set off after breakfast riding through olive groves, citrus orchards and small vineyards. After the green terraces of Narila the landscape becomes drier and the night is spent at the lovely Morayma hotel with views over the Guadalfeo river valley.

DAY 5

Today's ride takes you back to Trevelez by a different route, crossing the Guadelfeo river and riding through tiny whitewashed villages. Climb steadily to the pine woods above Trevelez and descend to the village for dinner and the night.

DAY 6

Breakfast and set off following dirt tracks and mule paths, crossing a deep ravine and continuing along forest tracks back to the stables. A late lunch in Capileira and your own arrangements for dinner - there are several bars and restaurants to choose from. Night at a hotel in Bubion.

DAY 7

The ride today takes you high into the beautiful Poqueira valley. Return to Bubion for farewell dinner and the night.

DAY 8

Breakfast then a return transfer to Malaga to arrive late morning.

Sierra Nevada Trail Rides : The Alpujarra Ride

This runs in summer months and takes you higher into the mountains avoiding the heat of the valleys. You stay at three different locations, returning to Bubion on the penultimate evening for a final ride into the mountains.

DAY 1

You will be met at Malaga at about 4pm and driven to your hotel in Bubion, a village in the Poqueira valley of the Sierra Nevada. The drive from Malaga, along the winding mountain roads up to Bubion, takes about two and a half to three hours. Bubion is about an hour and a half from Granada. Accommodation in Bubion is in a simple but comfortable village hotel and there will be time to settle in after the journey before meeting your guide, Dallas Love,who will take you for dinner in a local restaurant. Overnight Bubion.

DAY 2

Breakfast at the hotel, then you will be collected and driven the short way to the stables. After allocating horses, set off riding east towards the village of Trevelez, the highest village in Spain and famous for its cured hams and river trout. The first hour and a half or so of the ride is along old mule paths, then you head through open country and woodland until you reach the neighbouring villages of Pitres and Portugos. The morning's ride will be quite slow to give you a chance to get used to your horse and lunch will be at a bar in the village of Portugos. After lunch, continue on along paths and broad forest tracks amongst pines and oaks where there are lots of opportunities to canter. Arrive at the village of Trevelez in the late afternoon. After stabling the horses in a barn belonging to a local farmer, there is time for a drink in a local bar, a rest and a shower before dinner. The night at a comfortable hotel in Trevelez.

DAY 3

Meet for breakfast in the hotel then set off riding over totally different terrain past mountain farms and through pine forests. The route takes you out of the village and up a steep, rocky path where you will lead the horses for about 15 or 20 minutes. After mounting up, follow paths through evergreen forest and out on to open pastures at an altitude of about 2,500 metres with wonderful views over the villages below. On a clear day it may be possible to see across the sea to the mountains of Morocco. A picnic lunch and then continue through the mountains riding in an area almost impossible to get to except by horse. As you gradually descend, the vegetation becomes greener and you join a path leading to Berchules, where the night is spent. The horses may have to be led a short way as the path becomes quite rocky. After settling horses in a paddock, a hot shower before dinner and the night in a comfortable family run hotel in Berchules.

DAY 4

Breakfast then set off leading the horses for about 20 minutes until the path evens out. Berchules takes its name from the old Spanish word 'Berchel' meaning literally 'mountain garden' and it is easy to see how the area got this name. A picnic lunch by the river then leave the narrow paths for one of the Sierra's broad forest tracks and return to the village by a different route. Dinner and second night in Berchules.

DAY 5

Today you will descend to the River Guadalfeo and head back west to Trevelez. The landscape changes abruptly in the morning and, leaving the alpine like Sierra behind, you ride through small terraces of olive, almond and fig trees. After lunch in one of the small whitewashed village, start the gradual climb to Trevelez. Dinner and overnight in Trevelez.

DAY 6

A shorter ride today takes you back to Bubion. Following the forestry tracks through pine and oak woods you eventually arrive back at the stables high above the villages of the Poqueira valley. The route offers wonderful views over the Contraviesa and the Mediterranean Sea with lots of places to canter. A late lunch in the village of Capiliera and the night in the Casa Sevillana in Bubion. Dinner is not included today and you are free to choose from the tapas bars and restaurants Bubion.

DAY 7

The final day's riding to explore the remoter parts of the Poqueira valley with the Mulhacen (the highest mountain in Spain) forming a wonderful backdrop. A picnic lunch out riding and then ride back to Bubion for a well earned drink. A farewell dinner and the night in Bubion.

DAY 8

After breakfast in the hotel you will be driven to Malaga airport for your journey home.

Sierra Nevada Trail Rides : El Marquesado Ride

This ride circles the Sierra Nevada mountain range following some of the highest bridle paths on the Spanish Peninsula at an altitude of 1,600 to over 3,000 meters. Accessible only by horse or foot you will be riding through some of the most spectacular, varied and often demanding terrain in Sierra Nevada and El Marquesado.

Following a combination of forestry tracks, bridle paths, old droving routes and Moorish irrigation channels you will cover approximately 30 to 40 kilometres per day. Riding for between 7 to 9 hours per day.

During the ride one night is spent in a high mountain refuge, the other 6 nights in comfortable village hotels (3 with pools). Each day there will be sections where it is necessary to lead your horses due to very steep and rough terrain. On 2 days there are downhill walks on foot of up to an hour and a half.

DAY 1

Collection from Malaga airport at designated time. Transfer to Bubion where you will meet with your guide. Dinner and overnight in comfortable hostel - Casa la Sevillana.

DAY 2

Setting out from the stables we cross the River Poqueira and climb steeply west on little used paths through small terraced farms and wood lands. Wonderful views of the Mulhacen and the 3 villages of the Poqueira valley. The first part of the afternoon follows an ancient irrigation channel through oak woods to join one of the forestry tracks where we stop for a picnic lunch. After lunch this track leads high into the valley of Lanjaron, where it joins a narrow path leading down and across the river Lanjaron. Horses camp out at about 1,800 mts. and riders transfer by vehicle to the village of Lanjaron (approx. 1 hours drive). Overnight in comfortable 3 star hotel with pool and air conditioning.

DAY 3

Continuing west we start the morning with a steep climb to the ridge of El Caballo at approx. 2,500 mts. From here we descend cross country on foot and horseback to the head of the river Niguelas where we join a dirt track leading to the source of River Durcal. In the River Durcal we join an old droving route which we follow for the rest of the afternoon. For the first 20 minutes there is a steep climb on foot, the rest of the afternoon we ride until a final descent of approx 30 minutes. During the course of the day the landscape changes dramatically and there are amazing views. Horses camp out and riders are driven to the town of La Zubia on the edge of Granada. 30 minute drive. Overnight in comfortable hotel.

DAY 4

Today we head to the town of Gúejar Sierra, during the morning we follow a very pretty bridle path through pine woods and high summer pastures. After a picnic lunch we join a dirt road where there are some good canters. Late afternoon we have a 6 km. descent on a secondary road to the town. Overnight hotel with pool.

DAY 5

Leaving the town way below we climb during the day to 2,300 mts. The path follows the contours of the ridge offering spectacular views to our right of the highest peaks in Sierra Nevada and to the left the plains of Guadix and Zenet del Marquesado. After a picnic by one of the mountain springs the path descends through pasture lands and pine woods to the Mountain refuge of Postero Alto at 1,900 mts. Here we share rooms, you need a sleeping bag or sheets, the refuge provides blankets. Dinner is basic and plentiful.

DAY 6

Following the foot and bridle path across the open mountain side, we climb to 3,000 mts. From where the descent starts to the valley of Trevelez on the southern side of Sierra Nevada. Spectacular views of the Mulhacen and the Alcazaba, 2 of the highest peaks. Overnight in the village of Trevelez.

DAY 7

A long morning ride following a very pretty path through woodlands, joining up late morning with one of the forestry tracks which offer some good canters. Late lunch in the village of Capileira and a well earned siesta before our goodbye supper. Final night in Bubion.

DAY 8

Transfer to Malaga airport.

Sierra Nevada Trails : La Buena Vista Trail

This is a stunning circular trail through the east of the Alpujarras and Sierra Nevada National Park, riding over very diverse and varied terrain, 3 days at high altitude.

The first two days of this spectacular ride pass through the southern slopes of the Alpujarras following the ancient Moorish paths and forestry tracks between the picturesque white villages.

The third day we climb to the Peñon del Puerto and maintaining an altitude of over 2,700 metres follow the ridge east to the Puerto del Lobo and the Altos de San Juan.

Seemingly endless vista of mountains and plains give an amazing sense of space and wilderness. The fourth day keeping an altitude of between 2,000 and 2,500 metres the trail passes through the summer pastures and woodlands of the northern slopes.

Day five the path crosses the high peaks at nearly 3,000 metres to the south side of Sierra Nevada and the Sierra of Trevelez. Day six head home on forestry tracks.

A reasonable level of fittness is required as much of this ride is at high altitude (2 days at over 2,700 metres), on three days there are sections where it is necessary to lead your horse down hill on rough uneven ground for up to an hour. One night we are in a high mountain refuge of Postero Also where it is necessary to share rooms.

The other nights are all in comfortable hotels or guest houses.

DESTINATION MAP top

 

Zara’s Planet Horse Riding Holidays Guarantee:

All our horse riding holidays hold a price guarantee. We believe in your piece of mind on price when you book one of our horse riding holidays and will refund the difference should you find the same horse riding holiday elsewhere at a lower price.

If you are having trouble finding exactly the right horse riding holiday for you from our horse riding holidays collection, please contact us directly using the form below and tell us in your own words what you would like to do and we will use our extensive knowledge to make sure we find that perfect horse riding holiday.

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Spain Holidays Testimonials

Bob & Ellie on Catalonia Trails, Spain

This was the perfect ride for ourselves - good riders, looking for a fast paced adventure, on responsive horses and experiencing the real Catalonia by way of meeting everyday people enroute, friends of our hosts at the guest houses and hotels we stayed in along the way. We'll be returning to try one of the

Bob & Ellie from UK