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Italy - Madonie Trail Sicily
Discover the wild and unspoilt island of Sicily on horseback!

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from £1,530 or €1,700

Horse Riding Holidays Italy, Madonie Trail, Sicily

Madonie Trail: Prices 2020/2021

GBP, £ EUR, € USD, $
Choose your currency

  • $1,929
    • GBP: 1,530
    • EUR: 1,709
    per person sharing
  • $2,212
    • GBP: 1,755
    • EUR: 1,960
    single room

Note: Rates are subject to daily exchange rate fluctuations, please refer to our ‘Terms & Conditions’ for full details.

Madonie Trail: Dates

2020
12 September – 19 September 2020
26 September – 3 October 2020
17 October – 24 October 2020
14 November – 21 November 2020

2021
10 April – 17 April 2021
3 July – 10 July 2021
18 September – 25 September 2021
9 October – 16 October 2021
6 November – 13 November 2021

Included –  All riding, full board accommodation, luggage transfer & airport transfers.

Excluded – Flights, drinks & tips.

Getting There
Arrive and depart Catania.

Transfer
Please arrive before 5pm if possible, it’s about a 2 hour transfer to the first night accommodation in an old farmhouse.

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

Discover the real Sicily from the saddle, on this fascinating ride through the Madonie Natural Park, which extends to approximately 40 thousand hectares and is home to more than 70% of the island’s wildlife.

Riding alongside Alex & Lizzie, they will personally guide you through the enchanting landscapes, giving you first hand experience of the culture, staying in local agriturismo hotels, farmhouses and guesthouses along the way and eating some of the most delicious, authentic Sicilian food along the way.

Alexandre Morello & Lizzie Reeves – Partners
Alex is a true expert when it comes to Sicily’s natural wonders, biodiversity, history and culture. Over the years he has explored and organised countless horse riding trails across Sicily. He’s an insatiable explorer who loves discovering new paths through his beloved Sicily, and sharing them with our clients.

Lizzie has ridden many trails around the world, but fell in love with the truly unique experience of trail riding in Sicily. She was born and grew up in London and studied French and Italian at Oxford University, before doing a post-graduate diploma in law. She worked for some time as a solicitor and specialised in international arbitration, before settling in Sicily full time to follow her true love of the island, horses and Alex.

Sicily has a good climate for riding almost all year round, amazing natural beauty and varied landscapes. Sicily is also truly unique in terms of its accessibility to riders. The island benefits from a vast network of trails and country lanes and an open countryside approach to land ownership, which means that there is access to almost all of the island on horseback, including its most remote and wildest corners. This also means that road riding during the trail is kept to an absolute minimum.

Over the centuries, Sicily has absorbed the influences of all those who have occupied the island, from the Greeks to the Arabs and the Bourbons. The charm of Sicily’s complex and unique identity is undeniably captured in its people, who could be defined as nothing other than “Sicilian”, and whose character is as intriguing and enchanting as the island’s history. The island’s richness and complexity also shines through in its cuisine, which combines centuries-old different culinary traditions and influences.

THE RIDING top

Madonie Trail: Horses – Sicilian Local Breed, with some Arab Crosses / 14.2hh – 16hh

Madonie Trail: Level of Riding & Pace – Intermediate to Advanced. You must be able to canter in control in open space and have and independent seat and hands.

Tack – English Style

Madonie Trail: Weight Restriction – 90 kg / 14 stone / 198 lbs.

Madonie Trails: Group Size – Maximum 10.

ACCOMMODATION top

The accommodation is a mix of Agriturismo Hotels, B&B’s & Farmhouses, that have been chosen for their location, warmth and charm.

The food is delicious, every effort is made to offer local, authentic dishes, cooked with love and passion and are simply beautiful to eat.

Horse Riding Holidays at Madonie Trails are part of the Zara’s Planet collection of Horse Riding holidays Italy.

Please Ask About

  • Other Sicilian Trails, including Coast to Coast, Wild Sicily, Ride Across Sicily, Corleone to Madonie and the Mount Etna Trail

SAMPLE ITINERARY top

Day 1: Arrival
You will arrive at Casalvecchio Geraci, an old farm dating from the eighteenth century which has been restored, immersed in the green hills of the River Rainò valley. Delicious dinner prepared using produce fresh from the farm and overnight at the agriturismo.

Day 2: Casalvecchio – San Mauro Castelverde (hours of riding: 6)
After breakfast, you will be assigned your horse for the trail and we will leave Casalvecchio at around 8.00 in the morning. We will begin by riding along the route of the River Rainò, an affluent of the Pollina River, which marks the eastern boundary of the territory of the Madonie, and which is characterised by its wild beauty, which made the perfect hiding places for the famous bandits who ruled the area in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. We will stop for a picnic lunch immersed in nature. In the afternoon, we will climb towards the medieval town of San Mauro Castelverde, which sits at more than 1000 metres above sea level, with views over the Tyrrhenian Sea. We will enjoy a dinner prepared with typical produce of the area and spend the night in an old monastery dating from the sixteenth century, which has been transformed into a hotel.

Day 3: San Mauro Castelverde – Cefalù (hours of riding: 7)
We will have breakfast and set off at around 8.00 in the morning. We will descend towards Castelbuono, the largest village in the Madonie, with around ten thousand inhabitants, and the former seat of the Ventimiglia Barons, who ruled for centuries over the entirety of the territory crossed during this trail. We will stop for a picnic lunch in the area of Castelbuono. In the afternoon we will ride towards the territory of Cefalù, passing through very wild areas covered in woods and mediterranean brush and the vineyard of Santa Anastasia. We will have dinner and spend the night at Turismo Rurale Cefalù, a beautiful hotel equipped with a swimming pool, with overlooking the sea.

Day 4: Cefalù – Casena Mongerrati (hours of riding: 6)
We will set off at about 8.30 in the morning and will begin by riding through an area covered in mediterranean brush with breathtaking views over the Tyrrhenian coast. We will arrive after a few hours at Gibilmanna, a famous sanctuary and Franciscan monastery dedicated to the Virgin, the patron and protector of the diocese of Cefalù. We will visit the sanctuary, which contains one of the most beautiful works by Gagini, a famous Renaissance Sicilian sculptor. We will then continue towards the charming medieval village of Gratteri, where we will stop for a picnic lunch. In the afternoon, we will continue the ride through the San Giorgio forest, dense with oak and durmast trees, and we will pass the ruins of the San Giorgio abbey, dating from the twelfth century, and the Madonna del Pedale, dating from the seventeenth century. Finally, we will arrive at Casena Mongerrati, equipped with a swimming pool, near Collesano, an ancient village of Arab origin (Qal’at as-sirat), where we will enjoy a delicious dinner and spend the night.

Day 5: Casena Mongerrati – Rifugio Marini (hours of riding: 5)
We will have breakfast and leave Casena Mongerrati at around 9.00 in the morning, crossing the Mugerrati forest, which is dense with cork, holm oak and durmast trees. We will ride then ride on towards Piano Zucchi, where we will stop for a picnic lunch, beneath the imposing calcium massif of Carbonara. We will continue towards Piano Cervi, immersed in thick forests of oak, which slowly give way to beech trees, and finally reach Piano Battaglia, a famous ski station at 1600 metres. We will have dinner and spend the night at the Rifugio Marini.

Day 6: Rifugio Marini – Terravecchia (hours of riding: 6)
After breakfast, we will set off from Rifugio Marini at around 8.30 in the morning. We will visit the Battaglietta, a depression in the landscape where all of the meltwater gathers and then travels along underground tunnels to Cefalù. We will then ride through the Vallone Madonna degli Angeli to admire the last remaining examples of the Nebrodi fir (abies nebrodensis), the symbol of the park. We will continue to the sanctuary of Madonna dell’Alto (at 1819 metres) – when visibility is good, you can enjoy views of most of the island from here. We will then descend towards our agriturismo, Terravecchia, in the territory of Castellana Sicula, where you can enjoy a swim in the pool with wonderful views towards Sicily’s enchanting hinterland. Here we will have dinner and spend the night.

Day 7: Terravecchia – Casalvecchio (hours of riding: 6)
We will have breakfast and leave Terravecchia at around 8.30 in the morning. On this day of the trail we will ride along the southern slopes of the Madonie, famous since time immemorial for the production of wheat and hay, the island’s primary agricultural resource, and the reason why Sicily was once known as “Rome’s granary”, as well as constituting the island’s main source of nourishment. We will pass through Petralia Soprana, nominated the most beautiful village in Italy in 2018, and return in the afternoon to our base, agriturismo Casalvecchio Geraci, after riding along “trazzere” (old pathways used for the transport of animals and goods) through beautiful scenery. We will enjoy a delicious dinner, made from the agriturismo’s own produce, and spend the night here.

Day 8: Departure
Breakfast and transfer to the airport.

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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Italy Holidays Testimonials

Carol Dobson on Sardinia Trails, Italy

This ride rates as above average in my opinion in several categories (I’ve ‘done’ 18 holiday rides that could be used for comparison). Specifically with regard to the terrain, the horses, the accommodation, the pool, the tack, the guides, the staff. I felt very relaxed and all of us were able to relax whilst on

Carol Dobson from UK