The UK can only be explored more effectively on horseback. Many bridle routes are waiting for you to ride along as you traverse the British countryside, from Scotland to England.
Your exploration will be more enjoyable with a UK trail-riding vacation! It’s an event you will remember, complete with skilled riders’ coaching, various equestrian pursuits, and excellent meals to restore your energy.
See which British paths are the finest for your upcoming horseback riding excursion.
The Pennine Bridleway, the first National Trail in the UK, is a historic route in Northern England that consists of more than 200 miles (330 km) of former drovers’ roads, tracks, quiet roads, and a brand-new bridle path. It connects Middle Top in Derbyshire, Peak District, South Pennines, Yorkshire Dales, and Cumbria and is regarded as England’s untamed backbone.
Take a ride along this trail’s Mary Towneley loop to observe the South Pennine region’s industrial history. Or wander across the 52 miles (84 km) of picturesque courses in the Yorkshire Dales National Park.
The Pennine is a beautiful option for a pleasant, simple stroll because it is a well-marked bridleway, but there are several ways to make the more challenging slopes more difficult.
Trails in the Brecon Beacons
Any horse rider will enjoy the several routes in this Welsh National Park. It offers beautiful scenery for riding in the verdant valleys and undulating hills of Pen y Fan and Fan Brycheiniog, home to two of the highest peaks in the UK.
The park has a total of six bridleways:
- Radnor Forest Ride: A wilderness route with breathtaking scenery. It departs from the Visitors Center and travels through the Welsh countryside for 70 miles (112 km).
- The Three Rivers Ride passes Llangose Lake and the western side of the mountains before reaching the River Usk.
- Four thrilling riding loops in the Black Mountains, perfect for a day vacation. If you’d like, you could complete all four at once, but make sure your horseback riding vacation includes accommodations along the way or look for a spot to stay the night.
- Three circuits of the Furlong Route Ride traverse the Blaenavon World Heritage Site. An excellent chance to study history and experience Wales’ forests and woodlands.
- A circular bridleway called Epynt Way passes by Sennybridge Training Area. Fifty-five miles (88 km) of varying mountain terrain are covered.
- Depending on which access you utilize, the excellent Crychan Forest has waymarked trails extending up to 25 miles (40 km).
Coast to Coast Mineral Tramways
Over 13 miles long, this trail is incredible (22 km). The Atlantic Coast in Portreath is where this historical trail begins and travels to Devoran. It was once a significant harbor for the nearby mines.
There are several old mine structures in the area, and you can see signs and information boards explaining the area’s mining history along the road. Many of these structures have been preserved, and they now make for a beautiful backdrop for riders who want to relive the heyday of mining while galloping beside the historic trains that carried the ore.
If you need a short break from riding, this trail is also suitable for walking or cycling.
Some of the most breathtaking vistas of forests may be found in the Thames Valley. The Ridgeway Trail travels 87 miles (139 km) over a route that connects Overton Hill and Ivinghoe Beacon. Many diverse people, including travelers, farmers, soldiers, and horse riders, have utilized it for almost 5,000 years!
It crosses various landscapes, from open grassland to cooling towers and woods, and is considered Britain’s oldest road. It is bordered by great prehistoric sites, particularly along the section between Ashbury and Letcombe Bassett, which offers numerous prehistoric views of the Thames Valley.
The South Downs Way
This lovely 100-mile (160-kilometer) trail winds across rolling downland and along grassy tracks in the South Downs National Park. Eastbourne’s magnificent white cliffs, the historic Winchester hill, and some of England’s most beautiful countryside with a variety of species and charming villages are among the landscapes.
It is the perfect place for a weekend horseback riding vacation in England because the bridleways are clearly defined and take only 2 to 3 days to finish. The trip is worth seeing the breathtaking views from the top of the hill, even though certain parts of the trail may be complex. If you bring your horse, be sure it is in good enough condition to go with you.
The Peddars Way is an ancient Roman footpath, an easy 50-mile (80-km) ride across Norfolk that passes low cliffs and sandy beaches. The word “pedestal” means “on foot” in Latin, but today it’s also a trendy road for horseback riding.
This track is an excellent choice for novice riders who want to feel the rush of off-road riding because it will easily take you across the stunning Brecks moorlands and allow you to observe unusual wildlife like the golden pheasant. Want to increase the difficulty? For more experienced riders who desire to trace the steps of the ancient Romans, Peddars Way offers a variety of full-day tours.
Coast to coast in Scotland
Who among riders wouldn’t want to bike across the Scottish Highlands? This route will take you from Loch Inver on the west shore to Brora on the east coast. It is the ideal trail for an advanced horse riding vacation in the UK because it is a lengthy and challenging seven-day trip.
Expect challenging hikes across Scotland’s rocky terrain, but there are also some sections for thrilling sprints across deserted beaches, where you might even see a few seals basking in the sun. Additionally, since you are in Scotland, you can sip some Scotch whisky to relax after the exhausting journey.
Learn more: Why Do Horses Buck and How to Stop Them