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About Zara's Planet
Worldwide Horse Riding Holidays Specialists

BOOK HOLIDAYS

WE LOVE TO SHARE OUR PASSION & THE BEST HORSE RIDING HOLIDAYS IN THE WORLD WITH YOU.

WE BRING YOU UNRIVALLED PERSONAL SERVICE AND EXPERTISE

Hi. Zara and Jill here, to tell you how for nearly 20 years, Zara’s Planet has been helping clients from all over the world to enjoy horse riding holidays of a lifetime.

From ranch holidays in the USA to safaris in Kenya, playing polo in Argentina to fast desert ride, cultural immersion rides in every continent of the world, we’ve explored the world for 20 years and work with the most interesting & diverse horse outfitters who share their lives, incredible horses and knowledge of their country generously with you…it’s an incredible privilege to partake in these trips. We love nothing more that matching clients to a trip, working through all the detail with you and then enjoying the feedback on your return.

Our range of horse riding holidays has been carefully vetted and selected, to ensure that what we offer you is the best selection of riding holidays available anywhere. We offer them at a guaranteed best price too. If you find the same holiday on offer at a lower price through another operator, we will refund you the difference.

Browse our selection of horse riding holidays, and you will find much to tempt you, no matter what your riding ability or experience.

If you are an experienced rider, we can offer you absolute adventure on top-class horses, as we work with the very best operators in the world. Or if you’ve never actually been in the saddle before, that’s no problem, as many of our centre-based rides cater for absolute beginners.

That means you’ll also find your perfect holiday here if you’re an experienced rider with a novice rider travelling with you. Other activities in family-oriented locations mean that partners and children can have a great time too, even if they never get in the saddle at all.

We bring you unrivalled service and knowledge at all times, as either one of our team or one of our trusted experts has experienced the horse riding holiday of your choice. It means that any detailed further information you need on any of our holidays, or even advice on choosing which one is right for you, is just a phone call or e-mail away. We pride ourselves in offering such in-depth personal expertise of the horse riding holidays and the countries you visit.

We and the rest of our team all share your love of horses. We come from competitive riding backgrounds, and you can contact us through our UK and Irish bases at any time. We’re always happy to talk about anything horse-related, and specifically the travels we’ve enjoyed and how you can enjoy them too.

We look forward to hearing from you, and to sending you on a great adventure!

Signed - Zara Stassin& Jill Dolan

MEET SOME OF OUR TEAM MEMBERS

Travel, Horses & People – Our Passion

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ZARA STASSIN

MD (Ireland)

Zara has always had a passion for travel and at last count visited and lived in 40 countries. She grew up with show ponies often breaking, schooling and riding ponies in for a top UK producer. After school she worked on stud farms in Belgium before settling into corporate life where she worked in IT and Travel for Irish companies for over 15 years, most recently as MD of a $500 million travel agency in New York. In 2006 she established Zara's Planet and moved back to Ireland to live the dream. Zara's three girls & horses keep her busy when she's not in the office or travelling. Zara's youngest daughter Sunnibhe (16) currently competes at the 1.20m level on her gorgeous little horse Echo with showjumping Ireland. You'll often find Zara & Sunnibhe hacking for hours through the Dublin mountains if there is a quiet weekend with no competitions! Sadhbh (22) is an accomplished rider having pony evented up to FEI level when younger. Currently retired from competing (for now) she is just completing university and works as a project manager for an equestrian media company. During Covid years she worked in Mozambique, South Africa and Botswana helping out our partners. Saoirse (24) is an avid traveller having worked as a back up rider in South Africa, Botswana, Argentina and Chile. The only member of the family who doesn't ride is her husband, John, he does love wildlife and is a good test dummy for trips that offer options for non riders! Exploring and visiting incredible countries on horses is part of the job and Zara has been lucky enough to ride with some wonderful clients who have become firm friends throughout Africa, Asia, South America and Europe. Last year she brought a group of very experienced teenagers on an incredible safari to Ants Nest and Horizons in South Africa, followed by a trip to Argentina with a group of women adventurers...they rode from Estancia to Estancia in the Wetlands, tango'd in Buenos Aires and speed boated into the waterfalls at Iguazu. This year she is excited to bring a group to Botswana's Okavango Delta, Mozambique, an expedition ride in the Namib desert followed by a return to Ants Nest.

'Zara’s Planet and riding holidays are my absolute passion. It doesn't feel like work as there is nothing I prefer than planning riding adventures for my clients. I love the hands on aspect and being able to provide a personal service. Combining my passion for horses, people & travel is just such a privilege.'

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JILL DOLAN

MD (UK)

Jill and her family are heavily involved with horses on a day to day basis, competing regularly in showing competitions across the country. The family's biggest win to date was 'Horse of the Year Show' in the nineties with their 15hh Show Hunter, 'Mr Pemberton'. Most recently Jill campaigned her son Alfie's lead rein show pony Barkway Minstral and had a very successful year in 2015, by qualifying for the Royal International Show at Hickstead, followed by Horse of the Year Show in October 2015 where they took 8th place - we think this was outstanding as they were the only amateurs in the class. Even though Alfie has given up riding now, he still joins Jill at the stables and helps with her 3 horses plus the Shetland and Joey, Alfies' first ever pony, who will never be sold. Jill has developed a passion for dressage and brings groups on Classical Dressage training every year and then loves nothing more than putting these skills to practise at home. Jill also loves music and can often be seen out supporting and following her husband Hughs bands who play live all over the UK, with some jaunts abroad, including Spain and Germany. Jill's other passion is travel, and when the summer months of competition are over she chills out by travelling too far off and distant places to check out new rides. Jill is very social and each year brings together private groups of friends and clients to travel off on riding adventures, recently she rode 320km across the Namib Desert quickly followed by the Coconut Trail along the remote North East beaches of Brazil, the Kyrka Trail in Croatia and Day of the Dead ride in Mexico. Oh and let's not forget fitting in a Raphael Soto Dressage Clinic in Seville followed by a long weekend riding Lusitano Stallions in Portugal. Next up is a trip to Argentina's famous wetlands. Prior to launching Zara's Planet in the UK, Jill spent 15 years in the corporate world, as the Director of a highly successful media agency, representing brands that included the Daily Mail, Independent newspapers, Virgin Radio, Elle & Red Magazine.

'I love people, horses and travel, what better way to combine everything that gets me excited into a business I truly adore. I think what sets us apart is that we REALLY care and all our clients have direct access to us whether it’s by phone, email, Facebook or in person'

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LAURA DOLAN

Associate Director

Laura and Jill are sisters and Laura has an abundance of experience in customer care from working in the insurance business - Laura is big into horses too and shares the same passion for showing as her sister Jill and can be seen showing during the summer with her 15.2HH Show Hunter Machair. Come winter Laura spends a great a deal of time researching and sourcing new exciting riding holiday destinations. Laura manages our website and keeps all our content and photos up to date and runs the office when Jill and Zara are out hosting rides with clients.

'I love working with my sister and Zara, we all share the same passions and goals, searching out the most amazing riding destinations which we can offer to our valued clients – it’s exciting, rewarding and interesting, I can’t tell you how wonderful it is to talk to so many horsey people each day, hear about the sort of riding holidays they’d like to book but also about them and the horses they have at home and what they do!'

~ SOME OF OUR RIDERS TESTIMONIALS ~

Nancy & Corinna on Sierra Tejeda, Spain – April 2023

Los Olivillos is a fabulous place to relax and unwind all the while enjoying the fabulous horses and the hacks up, down and round the mountains. I have returned year after year since discovering this slice of Spanish heaven 8 yrs ago. Been there now more times than I can count. Run by the fabulous Continue Reading

Nancy & Corinna Sierra Tejeda 21/04/2023

Victoria Wickens on the Krka Trail, Croatia – June 2022

The Krka trail is a ride through beautiful scenery, with varied terrain, offering fast riding across open countryside. The accommodation is basic but comfortable, the food plentiful and tasty, and every host makes you feel so welcome. The horses are really well looked after, and so sure footed (even when cantering on rocky paths!), and Continue Reading

Victoria Wickens The Krka Trail, Croatia 21/04/2023

Alison Allan on the Coconut Trail, Brazil – November 2022

I have done a number of holidays with Zara's Planet and the Coconut Trail is my number one. The horses are amazing, they just keep going, so well schooled and willing and did I say FAST. The holiday itself is a fantastic balance of serious horse riding, amazing sightseeing, fantastic food and relaxing down time. Continue Reading

Alison Allan The Coconut Trail, Brazil 21/04/2023

The Kerbey’s on Sosian Lodge, Kenya – September 2022

We loved Sosian Lodge, accommodation was great. The horses really nice and were beautifully turned out every day - Meghan even rustled up some stock saddles for us to ride in. The food and wine were excellent and plenty of it. We had breakfast out in the bush a couple of times, and a couple Continue Reading

The Kerbey’s Sosian Lodge, Kenya 21/04/2023

Nanno on the Gaucho Trail, Argentina

Now that I am settling into my new normal ,  want to write and let you know how much I enjoyed yet another fabulous Zarasplanet adventure. It was wonderful to experience at the time and continues to bring joy through the memory of it and recounting of stories . All the women in our group were Continue Reading

Nanno Fitzsimons Ireland Gaucho Trail, Argentina 07/04/2023

Jack on Fairytale of Fayoum, Egypt

We are all back safe and sound after a great week overall. Everyone was really happy with the tour. Saber was an excellent host and looked after us very well all week. The horses, hotel and the itinerary were very good, thank you so much for your excellent service. We are already planning a trip with Continue Reading

Jack Ronan private group Ireland Fairytale of Fayoum, Egypt 07/04/2023

Regina on Monterasato, Italy

I just wanted to drop a little line to say a massive thank you for all your help with regards to our brilliant holiday that we’ve just come home from.  I can’t recommend the place highly enough… The whole experience was second to none.. people, food, horses, accommodation… Loved the holiday so much and already Continue Reading

Regina Fahy Ireland Monterasato, Italy 07/04/2023

Ina on the Donana Adventure, Spain

The horses, the guides and whole ride was fantastic. It’s an exceptionally well run ride and the accommodation and food was stand out. One of the best parts was visiting El Rocío, felt like being in the wild west but in Europe…super cool….thank you yet again for your great service and recommendation….where to next?

Ina Ruthenberg, Germany Donana Adventure, Spain 07/04/2023

Claire on the Wadi Rum ride, Jordan

I loved Jordan. The weather was fab, the food was good, my horse was great, and the scenery is spectacular. I was really happy to be somewhere that I had zero phone or wifi for 6 days straight, I can 100% see why you reckoned it was the right choice, it definitely was. Thank you so Continue Reading

Claire Palmer, Northern Ireland 30/11/2022 Northern Ireland Wadi Rum ride, Jordan 07/04/2023

Vicky on the Coffee Trail, Colombia

The Colombian Coffee Trail was my first horse riding holiday and what a holiday it was! Riding well trained horses of the beaten track, over and around mountains surrounded by the most incredible scenery which allowed you to get a real feel of rural Colombia, the people and their way of life. The guides and Continue Reading

Vicky Campbell - UK Colombia, America 01/11/2019

OUR HOLIDAY OFFERS BY POPULAR TYPES

WE WORK HARD TO GET THE BEST DESTINATIONS FROM ALL OVER THE WORLD FOR YOU

ADVENTURE - 100 %

HONEYMOON - 50 %

SAFARI'S - 30 %

FAMILY - 50 %

TRAIL & EXPEDITION - 30 %

TRAINING HOLIDAYS - 20 %

RESPONSIBLE TOURISM

WE BELIEVE STRONGLY IN RESPONSIBLE TOURISM

We believe strongly in responsible tourism at Zara’s Planet Ltd and we hope that you will share our ethics. Especially in less touristic destinations, it is easy to have a negative impact on local communities. By working with local, professional outfits, we vet our partners carefully to make sure that the local effect is positive. You won’t find us packing clients on to bus tours… we believe in travel in small groups and individuals. This is generally better for the local environment and it gives you, the client, a far better holiday experience. You arrive home relaxed, refreshed, inspired and revitalized.

We firmly believe in sustainable tourism which means that we will put a portion of our profits back into carefully selected local projects. We also try to utilize local outfits to encourage and support sustainable tourism. We will be fully transparent in our methods and the level of support that we provide to projects. Current projects that we support financially include a primary school in South Africa and primary schools in Bangladesh where Zara’s Planet has contributed funds for much needed equipment.