Discover Maremma Tuscany, one of the most famous "horse regions" of Italy, on the back of one of our friendly and sturdy horses. Choose from lessons, one-hour trail rides, half-day rides; or spend the whole day exploring the countryside of Toscana from horseback. Please follow this link if you want to see photos and read the description of our horses.
Discovery Week: The First Steps for Beginner Riders
The first time sitting on a horse is an exciting experience unlike any other. Forming a relationship strong enough to understand one of these amazing animals is truling something special. At the Hotel and Trail Riding Center Prategiano, we give you the guidance and opportunity to become comfortable with the beginning steps into the equestrian world.
After only a few hours of riding lessons, you will learn the basic rules of riding a horse. This will give you the self-confidence you need to be ready for your first real trail ride. You will quickly learn to trust the quiet temperament of our horses. During your equestrian vacations, the correct combination of lessons and outings is individually structured. Each evening your instructor will discuss the next day's lesson or trail ride with you.
Full-day and Half-Day Trail Rides for Experienced Riders
Riders with intermediate or advanced experience can participate in the full-day trail riding trips, during which you wil discover the most beautiful places of Maremma Tuscany. These trails are offered daily and include a picnic lunch break. A full-day ride is about 4 to 5 hours in the saddle with lunch in the middle. The program "Full Day Trail Rides" includes five full days in the saddle and one day off to relax or enjoy other activities. If you prefer "Half-Day Trail Rides", you will also have the opportunity to participate in the picnic lunches.
Here are some example destinations for our trail rides:
LAGONI: On the way to the crumbling farmhouse that marks the location of our picnic, we will pass the geothermal steam sites that provide green engery for 30% of the Tuscan population. These undergroud steam vents represent a unique characteristic of this region of Italy. On the way back, we have a beautiful birdseye view of the town of Travale.
MINES OF GERFALCO: A path through nature leads us down into the neighboring valley and then up the next mountainside. We will pass through private farmhouses and small rivers. The picnic is held at a former silver mine where there is a wonderful view of the sea and Maremma Tuscany. Before arriving at the picnic, we will pass through the small Medieval streets of the village of Gerfalco.
GALLERAIE: This ride follows mountain ridge through grassy fields and then turns down into the Cecina River where we follow the running water through a shady forest. The picnic is held near the abandoned Hotel and Spa Galleraie, where we can visit ruins of antique baths from the time of the Etruscans. We will also pass through the town of Travale and see where the Butteri ride.
PRATA: Old trade and animal paths cross through the native forests that characterize this ride. In this area of Alta Maremma Toscana one often meets wild animals such as fox, deer, wild boar or porcupines. From the "Poggio di Prata" we can look out at a 360 degree view of Tuscany including the Maremma coastline and the island of Elba. A full-course picnic awaits us near the mining village of Prata, which is also visible from the poggio.
BOCCHEGGIANO: Here, we will ride to the old mines of this village, which were once worked for pyrite. The number of mines (that no longer function) is an indication of how successful the region Maremma Toscana once was and how times have changed with the continuous out-migration of this industry.
CHIUSDINO: Riding through Tuscany you will experience many different landscapes. This day-ride will take you from the wild Maremma Toscana to the typical hilly agricultural landscape around Siena. We will travel around the medieval village of Chiusdino and you can admire the fantastic panorama of the valley of the Merse River.
RIVER MERSE: Overgrown fruit trees surround crumbling farmhouses and, depending on the time of year, invite you to a fruit snack. After a long descent, we will ride through the crystal waters of the Merse River, and experience how nature has recaptured former agricultural land over the years. The picnic is held on the riverbank and on warm days, the high point of the riders' week is a swim with the horses. After the picnic we may visit the abbey ruins of San Galgano. Their is an antique and mystical atmosphere around the standing remains of this Romanesque chapel, making this one of the most interesting sites in Tuscany.
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