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The Sumba Ride

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Category: Sumba
  • horse riding holiday Sumba
  • horse riding holiday Sumba
  • horse riding holiday Sumba
  • horse riding holiday Sumba
  • horse riding holiday Sumba
  • horse riding holiday Sumba
  • horse riding holiday Sumba
  • horse riding holiday Sumba
  • horse riding holiday Sumba
  • horse riding holiday Sumba
  • horse riding holiday Sumba

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Known as the forgotten island, it’s more than likely you’ve never heard of Sumba until now. Closer to Australia than Bali and also bigger in size, Sumba is a globetrotting destination that has our heart racing with excitement! It’s got thrilling, wild and colourful horse culture that will leave you bug-eyed and gasping for more. Mounted on native Sumba and Sandalwood horses, globetrotters will have the unique privilege to traverse the varied landscape of West Sumba the way the local horsemen do. You’ll become spellbound by their mystical horse culture, ancient beliefs and timeless traditions.

In partnership with Nihiwatu (voted BEST resort in the world in 2017), Globetrotting is pleased to present a five day, four night riding itinerary that centres around this intoxicating island. Throughout the four-day ride, you’ll feel as if you’re stepping into a forgotten world where you’ll creep through palm tree groves, experience wild and free canters along pristine coastlines, sit cross-legged with locals in their homes chewing betel nut while learning about their daily existence, swim bareback in shimmering turquoise oceans, interrupt herds of water buffalo as they wallow in the rice fields and trot through lush, fragrant rainforest.

And the fun doesn’t stop there! When you’re out the saddle you’ll fall head over heels in love with the luxury, tropical surrounds of your five-star resort Nihiwatu. This is where you can soak in your own private pool, have cocktails at the bar, opt for a massage, an early morning yoga session or a stand-up paddle board adventure down the Wanakaka river. It’s certainly worth considering spending some extra days at Nihiwatu after your riding itinerary since you’ve travelled this far.

NON-RIDERS ARE WELCOME

This ride is perfect for partners or family members who are non-riders. There is a plethora of activities from fishing, jet-skiing, surfing (world-famous for its surf break and suitable for beginners and experienced wave chasers), snorkelling, spa treatments, yoga and meditation. 

As globetrotter’s we’re constantly searching for new destinations where the horse culture is rich, varied, wild and completely removed from our everyday existence. With the horse being spiritually connected to the Sumba culture and history we can’t wait to share this special island with you, our globetrotters! 

FAST FACTS

time in the saddle: on average 2 to 4 hours per day

breed of horses: Sumba Sandalwood ponies and Sandalwood Australian TB cross

pace: variable depending on the terrain, with opportunities to trot and canter

riding ability: intermediate to advanced riders. There are also plenty of activities for non-riding partners to keep them occupied while you ride!

weight limit: maximum of 85kg *please contact us if you are above this weight

accommodation: luxury 5 star, air-conditioned villa accommodation with private pool. Your villa includes butler service, private in-villa dining and daily laundry service.

seasons: dry season is April to November, wet season is December to March

duration: five days, four nights *with four days riding. There is the opportunity for riding guests to stay on at the resort at a reduced rate

group size: Maximum of four guests

2018 departure dates and rates:

January 13 to 17, 2018

January 21 to 25, 2018

Couple: ride price starts from $4513 USD per couple

Twin-share: ride price starts from $2256 USD per person, if willing to share with another globetrotter of the same gender. *Perfect for riding friends.

Single: ride price starts from $3528 USD per person, own private room.

* All prices include tax and service charge of 21%.

* The ride price includes three daily meals, non-alcoholic beverages, minibar and laundry.

* The ride price excludes alcoholic beverages, airfares, airport transfers and additional activities outside the itinerary

*Custom departure dates available on request.

Please contact Globetrotting for what activities are included for a non-rider.

THE PASOLA RIDE

Globetrotting is pleased to present a four day, three night riding itinerary that centres around the annual Pasola festival, an untamed, wild and crazy horse event. This has NEVER before been offered where you’ll be able to ride to and from this epic horse cultural event alongside the local Sumbanese people. You’ll literally be swept up in the energy and vibe of this time-honoured festival.

WHAT IS PASOLA?

Pasola is a pre-harvest fertility ritual that is held annually to give thanks to the ancestral spirit of West Sumba. Hundreds of Sumbanese cowboys are divided into two groups – from upper to lower villages. Before they start, the Rato (traditional priest leader) prays in-between the two groups, then he’ll throw a spear to start the game. The riders are bareback on horses adorned in festive garments will fling (blunt) wooden spears at each other over and over again. The idea is to unseat or hurt their opponents or horses. Fallen men or horses may not be attacked, but any blood shed is believed to fertilise the soil and benefit the next harvest. The word ‘Pasola’ is derived from the word ‘sola’ or ‘hola’ which means a long wooden stick used as a spear. The precise date of Pasola is decided by the Rato (traditional priest leader), one or two weeks before the festival. It’s the yearly arrival to the coastline of a strange and multi-coloured sea worm known as a Nyale worm.

duration: four days, three nights *with three days riding. There is the opportunity for riding guests to stay on at the resort at a reduced rate.

2018 departure date and rate: 

Mid-February – specific departure date to be confirmed a month before departure. Click here to register your interest. Only FOUR available saddle seats. Non-riders welcome to join.

Couple: ride price starts from $3370 USD per couple

Twin-share: ride prices starts from $1685 USD per person, if willing to share with another globetrotter of the same gender. *Perfect for friends.

Single: ride price starts from $2638 USD per person, own private room.

* All prices include tax and service charge of 21%.

* The ride price includes three daily meals, non-alcoholic beverages, minibar and laundry.

* The ride price excludes alcoholic beverages, airfares, airport transfers and additional activities outside the itinerary

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 USD, we believe paying via credit card is the most cost effective and easiest option for you.

Why is the price quoted in US dollars?

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

Sumba is 400km east of Bali and 50-minutes by air from Bali’s Ngurah Rai International airport. There are regular daily flights with two domestic airlines between Bali and Sumba. The flights will be through Tambolaka, the closer airport in West Sumba. We recommend flying Garuda Airlines in terms of reliability.

Flight schedules (subject to change without notice):

Arrival: Denpasar, Bali (DPS) to Tambolaka, Sumba (TMC)

Garuda Indonesia Bali 1300hrs, Tambolaka 1400hrs

Departure: Tambolaka, Sumba (TMC) to Denpasar, Bali (DPS)

Garuda Indonesia, Tambolaka 1110hrs, Bali 1210hrs

Private airport transfer:

Round-trip transfer from Tambolaka airport to Nihiwatu is $250 USD* per vehicle. One vehicle can accommodate up to 4 passengers.

*Transfer price is subject to a 21% tax and service charge.

FURTHER READING AND VIEWING

Still not convinced? Why not check out this video for an extra dose of inspiration.

Click here to learn more about the wonderful Carol Sharpe who will be your guide on this horse riding adventure of EPIC proportions!

And if you’re keen to find out more about the Sandlewood horses you will be riding, read this post about Covo, a guest horse on the island.

Globetrotter Jenny Bright joined us on the first ever world exclusive Pasola Ride in 2017. You can read her feedback here.

Jenny Bright

"If you think that Sumba is just another Bali, it's not. It's so much more and so much better. The Nihiwatu Resort is absolute paradise. The guide Carol, and her staff, Carlos and Petrus were really friendly and approachable. We had many opportunities to trot and canter along the beach and through the forest and it definitely was not a nose to tail ride at all. We thoroughly enjoyed our spur of the moment adventure and Im still dreaming of this magical place. We highly recommend that if you ever have the opportunity to join the Pasola trek, don’t think, just do it."

The Pasola Ride, Sumba

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