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The Camargue Ride, France

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Category: France Camargue
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Dramatically beautiful and historically famous for its wild white horses, Camargue is a region located in the south of France, home to one of the oldest living breeds of horses in the world. It’s here in this rugged, marshy delta that your ride begins where you’ll discover first hand the passion and traditions astride a ghostly-white Camargue horse. You’ll be the honourable guests of the Bon family, farmer’s to their very core, and you’ll ride alongside Frédéric and learn the traditional ways of ‘Le Gard’ who work the black-as-coal Camargue bulls native to this region.

To be honest, globetrotters, this globetrotting experience is a game-changer. The Camargue horse is said to have lived in the Camargue marshes and wetlands for thousands of years and has long standing historical ties to the local community, where families have worked with the breed for generations. With their characteristic grey colour and love of salt water, the white horses of Camargue offer a globetrotting experience like no other.

Officially recognised as a breed by the Association des Éleveurs de Chevaux de Race Camargue since 1978, the cowboys that domesticate and work the horses in the area are know as Le Gardians. While they truly are ‘gardians’ of these creatures, these cowboys are not named for this, rather they take the name from the plains to the North known as Le Gard. These modern day cowboys use the Camargue horses to herd the Camargue bulls and cattle who also happen to love the salty seawater.

Now let’s linger on the off-the-horse comforts, you’ll be staying in the Bon’s elegant, 17th century, luxury hotel where you’ll feast on French-food delicacies for breakfast, lunch and dinner.

FAST FACTS

time in saddle: the riding itinerary is variable and will see you in the saddle on average between 2 to 5 hours per day throughout the week.

breed of horses: {INSERT SQUEAL OF EXCITEMENT} Globetrotters, you’ll have the unique privilege of riding a Camargue horse for five days – one of the oldest living breeds of horses in the world. The Camargue horse is said to have lived in the Camargue marshes and wetlands for thousands of years and has long standing historical ties to the local community, where families have worked side-by-side with the breed for generations. You’ll be riding the very same horses that have been used by your French host’s family for generations, horses that are adept at herding the black bulls of Camargue. The Bon family (your guides & hosts for the five days) have a herd of 35 horses to choose from.

type of tack: French western-style saddle and bridle

pace: varies depending on terrain, plenty of trotting and cantering – rest assured.

riding ability: intermediate to advanced only. All riders must be comfortable trotting and cantering over varied terrain.

weight limit: maximum of 90kg *please contact us if you are above this weight for a further assessment

accommodation: prepare to gasp upon arrival when you set foot on the estate that you’ll be staying at throughout the itinerary. The family home has been inhabited for several generations by the BON family, ranchers from father to son. Jacques BON, a rancher to the bottom of his soul, together with the help of his wife, Lucille, an architect, restored the farmhouse to a charming hotel, simple and warm. The 8 rooms ooze comfort and character while modern and elegant.

group size: minimum of 4 and a maximum of 10 guests

seasons: October

ride length: 5 days, 4 nights with 5 riding days (variable hours in the saddle)

2019 departure dates:

October 14 to 18

October 21 to 25

October 29 to November 2

2019 ride rate:

€2420 per person, twin share in a superior room

€2732 per person, twin share in a junior suite

Single supplement is available upon request for an extra charge. PLEASE NOTE: a single supplement charge will apply to solo travellers if we do not have another guest willing to share.

Non-riders are welcome on this ride, please ask us for a quote.

*The price includes all accommodation, riding, breakfast, lunch and dinner.

*The price does not include international or regional flights, travel insurance (compulsory), all beverages at dinner including alcohol, tea and coffee. Transfers to and from the estate.

PAYMENT OPTIONS

Accepted payment is by credit card only. There is a 2% surcharge on all credit card payments. Since you’ll be paying in a foreign currency, in this case EURO, we believe paying via credit card is the most cost effective and easiest option for you.

Why is the price quoted in European Euro?

With our overseas riding destinations (rides other than in Australia), the currency is dictated by our partner in that country. Therefore due to fluctuating exchange rates we have to quote in the same currency.

TRANSFER INFORMATION

You will need to rent a car in order to be flexible while staying at the farm and also because it’s situated in the heart of the Regional Park of the Camargue, so a little bit in the middle of nowhere. We recommend flying into Marseille-Marignane (MRS) airport and it’s approximately a 1 hour drive from the farm. Remember you’ll need to arrive at the farm by 3pm on day 1, so please ensure your flight arrives no later than 12 midday on day 1 as this will give you a chance to grab some lunch before heading out to the Camargue Regional National Park. And you’ll finish riding around lunch time on the last day, so if you’re wanting to fly home this day please don’t book departing flights before 6pm. If the thought of this is giving you a headache, let us know and we will see if we can tee you up with another globetrotter booked on the same departure as yourself so you can share the cost of a hire car. Globetrotting is happy to provide a competitive quote on international flights, travel insurance (only available for Australian residents), car hire and hotels before and after your ride.

FURTHER READING AND VIEWING

Check out THIS epic video to get a taste of what’s in store on this culture-rich globetrotting adventure.

Roz Beinke

'I loved this ride! Even with shocking weather we had a ball on sturdy, strong and responsive grey Camargue horses who galloped over all terrain - along wild and remote beaches, over muddy saltbushes, with rain in our faces and feeling oh so alive! The bulls were small and black but also fast, so watching the Gardians at work with them was great. The accommodation, food, service and fellow riders just made this a fabulous cultural and historical experience. One of those rides I will remember forever.'

Camargue, France

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