Learning to ride horses is more fun on the SunCoast than any other area. From beaches to trails and naturalized areas, the surf and sand are great places to ride a horse in Sarasota.
The sun, sand, and surf are why people come to Florida but they may not realize horses and riding are very popular from horse farms to rodeos to polo. Find out why visitors love to come to the SunCoast for unique equine experiences.
Myakka River Trail Rides offers a private facility for everyone from children to beginners and experienced adult riders to have a chance on a horse. The staff are experienced in all things equine and can offer a fun experience for everyone. Take the reins and wander the 40 acres of fields on beautiful breeds of horses. Horse guides are available for trail riding, lessons, parties, and more. Check out some of the rides:
- Intro ride: great for young people and try it out for a short time. Learn the basics of stop and go, go with a group through trees, water, and fields. Great for young riders or those who have never ridden before
- Meet horses with fast gaits on sport horses trained in jumping and barrel racing. Great for riders who are confident on a horse
- Sunset rides for any occasion are a fun way to relax and have fun on a horse. Great for riders of any experience level with trained guides
Horse riding on a beach has a romantic connotation. Going along the edge of the water, trotting through surf and sand can be exhilarating. Bradenton offers beach rides with the only stables in Florida to offer horseback riding on the beach. Horse surfing is also a world class experience not found anywhere else. Some things to know:
- Use the 10,000 acre Deer Prairie Creek Preserve for riding the coastline any time night or day
- Planned rides during low tide for maximum amount of sand for beach rides
- HorseSurf and HorseSki optional extras to feel at home in the water on a horse
Horses don’t mind 4 feet of water as well as rides in 6-8 feet of water. Some dolphins even join the rides when in the water.
Safety with Horses
To be in water with horses requires more than a helmet and riding shoes. Everyone under age 16 in Florida is required to wear a certified helmet as part of the swimming experience. Life jackets are mandatory under age 18 and optional for adults. They are part of the whole beach riding experience. Rides are limited to 45 minutes or so to avoid tiring out the horses too much. Safety of guests and riders is priority but so is taking excellent care of the horses for the safety of all parties involved.
Where Else to Ride
Some of the best places to ride in the Sarasota area offer unique experiences. Here are some of the best:
- Epic Equine Experiences: half-day trail rides on horseback will bring riders close to nature. Meals and drinks are provided. Ask about coordinated kayaking and other adventures along with horseback riding in Lakewood Ranch, Florida
- Rosaire’s Riding Academy & Pony Rides: Take off on horseback in Sarasota with professional handling and grooming sessions, camps, private lessons, and more. Academy offers a petting zoo for families
- Born to Ride: Parrish, Florida experience that explores state parks and welcomes first-time riders
- Windsong Farm: Venice area farm that offers horseback rides for all ages and operates a week-long summer camp for ages seven on up to 16
It wouldn’t be fun on horseback without adding some athleticism to it. Check out the Sarasota Polo Club. Started in 1991, it is a luxury sporting destination with 130 acres of manicured equestrian acres, grass fields, a horse track, boarding facility and more. The facility is used for field sports events along with polo. This includes rugby, flag football, Aussie rules football, and more events. The polo club hosts training and offers a step up program to teach riders how to play polo along with hosting world class events like the USA Ultimate Club National Championship and more annual events.