Glenorchy Back Country Ride, New Zealand

4 NightsIntermediate to AdvancedFrom $3,285 NZD?Tour costs $3,285 NZD which is approximately $3,118 AUD

Globetrotting has the PERFECT accessible summertime riding escape by the name of the Glenorchy Back Country Ride.

This gem of a five day, four night itinerary is situated one hour from Queenstown in the cute-as-a-button lakeside community of Glenorchy. With five days of unrestricted hours in the saddle, this ride has it all: wet and wild canters along riverbanks, wandering through native beech forests, circumnavigating a mountain and exploring a quintessential High Country property.

Your hosts, mother and daughter Deana and Casey, have exclusive access to over 100,000 acres of pristine back country stretching from the Dart Valley through to the Rees Valley, with Mount Alfred smack bang in the middle.

On day one you’ll stay at Rees Valley Station’s shearers quarters. Rees Valley Station is a 37,000 acre working sheep station that borders World Heritage-listed Mount Aspiring National Park. On days two and three, globetrotters explore the Rees Valley with its glacial fed rivers and wild, untamed beauty. Your accommodation is beside Arthurs Creek Musterers Hut – back country camping at its best. Think waterfalls, starry nights and silence. On day four, you’ll cruise through enchanted landscapes made world-famous by blockbuster movies like The Lord of the Rings, The Hobbit, Mission Impossible and The Lion, The Witch & The Wardrobe. And the last night is at Miller’s House, a historic, bespoke guesthouse set within Paradise (literally)!

Seriously, the Glenorchy Back Country Ride typifies everything we love about New Zealand. All you need to do is get yourself on a plane to Queenstown, in the South Island of New Zealand, and we’ll take care of the rest!

Fast Facts

  • Horse Breed:NZ Stationbred, Quarter Horse and first cross, Percheron and Clydie first cross.
  • Pace:This will vary depending on the terrain and weather conditions. Some days are more mountainous than others. When terrain permits, there will be opportunities to trot and canter.
  • Weight Limit:A maximum of 95kg / 210lbs.
  • Type of tack:English all-purpose saddles which are all correctly fitted to the horses. *Please be advised, a select few horses are ridden in Western saddles simply because they provide a better fit for that specific horse, but we will not accommodate saddle requests. It is much preferred to match horse to rider based upon ability. Thanks for your understanding.
  • Seasons:October to March.
  • Group size:A minimum of 6 and a maximum of 10 guests.
  • Time in Saddle:On average between 5 to 6 hours, depending on the distance needed to be travelled, which will be between 15 and 25km per day.
  • Riding Ability:Suitable for intermediate to experienced riders. All riders MUST be confident riding outside an arena at all paces over uneven ground. Not sure what your riding experience is? Watch THIS video to find out.
  • Accommodation:For the first night guests stay in bunk bed rooms with a hot shower and flushing toilets a 1 minute walk away in a separate building. The next 2 nights guests will stay in tents with camp stretchers and swags beside a station muster hut, where there is a camp shower and a long-drop toilet. On the last night guests stay at Paradise Homestead, a historic, bespoke accommodation house with laze-about beds, hot showers, flushing toilets and a kitchen.
  • Ride Length:5 days, 4 nights.
  • Inclusions:

    The price includes twin share accommodation, transfers to and from Queenstown, meals and riding.

  • Exclusions:

    The price does not include international or regional flights, travel insurance (compulsory) or alcohol throughout the trip.

 

DEPARTURE DATES & RATES

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Departing FinishingAvailabilityTotal
November 1, 2021November 5, 2021SOLD OUT!
$3,285 NZD ?Tour costs $3,285 NZD which is approximately $3,118 AUD - Twin Share?Happy to share with another solo traveller of the same gender
November 8, 2021November 12, 2021SOLD OUT!
$3,285 NZD ?Tour costs $3,285 NZD which is approximately $3,118 AUD - Twin Share?Happy to share with another solo traveller of the same gender
November 15, 2021November 19, 2021SOLD OUT!
$3,285 NZD ?Tour costs $3,285 NZD which is approximately $3,118 AUD - Twin Share?Happy to share with another solo traveller of the same gender
November 22, 2021November 26, 2021SOLD OUT!
$3,285 NZD ?Tour costs $3,285 NZD which is approximately $3,118 AUD - Twin Share?Happy to share with another solo traveller of the same gender
November 29, 2021December 3, 2021SOLD OUT!
$3,285 NZD ?Tour costs $3,285 NZD which is approximately $3,118 AUD - Twin Share?Happy to share with another solo traveller of the same gender
December 6, 2021December 10, 2021SOLD OUT!
$3,285 NZD ?Tour costs $3,285 NZD which is approximately $3,118 AUD - Twin Share?Happy to share with another solo traveller of the same gender
December 13, 2021December 17, 2021SOLD OUT!
$3,285 NZD ?Tour costs $3,285 NZD which is approximately $3,118 AUD - Twin Share?Happy to share with another solo traveller of the same gender
January 10, 2022January 14, 2022SOLD OUT!
$3,285 NZD ?Tour costs $3,285 NZD which is approximately $3,118 AUD - Twin Share?Happy to share with another solo traveller of the same gender
January 17, 2022January 21, 2022SOLD OUT!
$3,285 NZD ?Tour costs $3,285 NZD which is approximately $3,118 AUD - Twin Share?Happy to share with another solo traveller of the same gender
January 24, 2022January 28, 2022SOLD OUT!
$3,285 NZD ?Tour costs $3,285 NZD which is approximately $3,118 AUD - Twin Share?Happy to share with another solo traveller of the same gender
January 31, 2022February 4, 2022SOLD OUT!
$3,285 NZD ?Tour costs $3,285 NZD which is approximately $3,118 AUD - Twin Share?Happy to share with another solo traveller of the same gender
February 7, 2022February 11, 2022SOLD OUT!
$3,285 NZD ?Tour costs $3,285 NZD which is approximately $3,118 AUD - Twin Share?Happy to share with another solo traveller of the same gender
February 14, 2022February 18, 2022SOLD OUT!
$3,285 NZD ?Tour costs $3,285 NZD which is approximately $3,118 AUD - Twin Share?Happy to share with another solo traveller of the same gender
February 21, 2022February 25, 2022SOLD OUT!
$3,285 NZD ?Tour costs $3,285 NZD which is approximately $3,118 AUD - Twin Share?Happy to share with another solo traveller of the same gender
March 7, 2022March 11, 2022SOLD OUT!
$3,285 NZD ?Tour costs $3,285 NZD which is approximately $3,118 AUD - Twin Share?Happy to share with another solo traveller of the same gender
March 14, 2022March 18, 2022SOLD OUT!
$3,285 NZD ?Tour costs $3,285 NZD which is approximately $3,118 AUD - Twin Share?Happy to share with another solo traveller of the same gender
March 21, 2022March 25, 2022SOLD OUT!
$3,285 NZD ?Tour costs $3,285 NZD which is approximately $3,118 AUD - Twin Share?Happy to share with another solo traveller of the same gender
March 28, 2022April 1, 2022SOLD OUT!
$3,285 NZD ?Tour costs $3,285 NZD which is approximately $3,118 AUD - Twin Share?Happy to share with another solo traveller of the same gender

WHAT IS INCLUDED IN THE PRICE?

The price includes twin share accommodation, transfers to and from Queenstown, meals and riding.

WHAT IS NOT INCLUDED IN THE PRICE?

The price does not include international or regional flights, travel insurance (compulsory) or alcohol throughout the trip.

Accepted payment is by credit or debit card only. There is a 2% surcharge on all card payments. Click HERE to read our recommendations on which cards are best to use to avoid international transaction fees.

WHY IS THE PRICE QUOTED IN NZD?
With our riding destinations, the currency is dictated by our ride partner in that country. Therefore due to fluctuating exchange rates we have to quote in the same currency.

Itinerary

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*Please note, this is a suggested itinerary only and subject to change at the discretion of your guides due to weather and other influencing factors.

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  • Day 1

    After enjoying the scenic transfer from Queenstown to the Glenorchy stables, you’ll be introduced to your knowledgable Back Country guides. The staff will help sort your baggage and gear before introducing you to your horse for the trip. Gear checked, you’ll ride alongside the pristine Rees River flats and enjoy a lunchtime picnic on the tip of Lake Wakatipu with views across the water to the local township of Glenorchy. After lunch you’ll head to the opening of the Rees Valley.

    Your first night’s accommodation will be at the Rees Valley Station shearers quarters. The woolshed here is still the hub of the station and is worth a peek. Panels of photographs and information inside the woolshed explain some of the history of the station and the people who work it. The Rees Valley Station shearers quarters has bunk bed rooms, flushing toilets, showers and electricity. Keep in mind, in summer the sun doesn’t set until around 11pm so you’ll have plenty of daylight hours to roam around on foot after dinner.

  • Day 2

    After a leisurely breakfast, you’ll start your journey into the dramatic, pristine environment of Rees Valley. Rees Valley Station is rated one of the area’s most scenic places to ride. This 37,000 acre sheep station borders the World Heritage-listed Mount Aspiring National Park. You and your fellow globetrotters will travel through virgin native rainforest (NZ beech), crossing over a glacier-fed river many times.

    This is a shorter day, but it’s a challenge for both horse and rider. Enjoy the climb up glacial terraces with the snow-capped mountains looming high above. Tonight you will camp at Arthurs Creek musterers hut for a night under the stars. This is camping in its simplest form: there is a musterers hut (the main hub of the campsite) and inside your tents you’ll find a camp stretcher and swag for you to sleep in. There is a long-drop toilet, glacer-fed waterfall (freezing, but oh so good for the skin) and a hot camp shower.

  • Day 3

    Today is spent exploring the very top of the valley, which borders Mount Aspiring National Park. You’ll visit 25 Mile Creek and the rock chasm within, swim the horses in glacier-fed Hunter Creek (weather permitting), stand at the foot of the gorgeous Lennox Falls and enjoy a saddlebag-packed lunch at the grassy base of the Falls. There will be time to explore here by foot before riding back to your base camp at Arthurs Creek musterers hut.

  • Day 4

    It’s time to leave the Rees Valley, riding into Paradise Valley. You’ll wander through native beech forests towards the opening of Paradise Valley, which is better known as Heaven’s Gate. From here you’ll traverse the north shores of Diamond Lake, and there may be the possibility of swimming the horses again if you wish.

    Coming into the Paradise Valley you are entering LORD OF THE RINGS COUNTRY! This is Isengard and Middle Earth. Your guides will take you through scenes and places used in many movies including The Lord of the Rings, The Hobbit, Vertical Limit, The Lion, The Witch & The Wardrobe, The Lovely Bones, Mission Impossible, Wolverine and more. This is some of the most pristine back country you could ever hope to travel through.

    On your last night you’ll stay in Millers House, which is a beautiful, turn-of-the-century house within the Paradise Trust. After bush camping for two nights, you’ll have a newfound appreciation for the hot showers, flushing toilets, electricity and freshly-made beds.

  • Day 5

    On the final day of your riding holiday, you’ll venture through the mouth of Lake Diamond and ascend the southern side of Mount Alfred. At the top of the track, you’ll be able to take a moment and contemplate where and what you have just experienced over the last few days. As far as the eye can see – and further – is where you have travelled astride your surefooted station horse. Finally, you’ll creep down the mountain and back onto your hosts’ farm to finish the trip with a welcome hot drink or cold beverage.

    *Depending on the weather, you might instead venture into the Dart Valley today – the views and scenery are equally rewarding.

  • Transfer Information

    Transfers to and from your Queenstown hotel accommodation are included in the price (on day one and day five). To avoid travel delays, we ask that all guests arrive and stay in Queenstown (at their own expense) the day before the ride begins, so you’re ready for collection between 9 – 10am (traffic depending) on day one. On day five, please book an extra night’s accommodation in Queenstown so you’re not rushed getting back into town. You can fly out the following day.
    *Please note, it is preferred that you stay in Queenstown’s city centre or out in the direction of Fernhill, NOT in Frankton. Should you choose to stay at a private residence or B&B, you will need to make your way to a specified central location for pick up.

What our valued Globetrotters say about The Glenorchy Back Country Ride

Glenorchy Back Country Ride, South Island, New Zealand - Globetrotting horse riding holidays

Nadeen Mitchell

‘This is the 13th week-long trek I’ve done in New Zealand. Most of these have been on the ‘Great New Zealand Trail Ride’, on a mix of my own and borrowed horses, which was held in some pretty great North Island locations. This trek in Glenorchy, however, was by far the best I’ve experienced. Each day was better than the last. The location is just epic and magical, the horses are perfect for the job and seem pretty darn happy with their life, and the guides are delightful. They are passionate, patient, helpful, interested and interesting people. I would absolutely do this ride again in a couple of years and would be delighted if they were still there.’

Glenorchy Back Country Ride, South Island, New Zealand - Globetrotting horse riding holidays

Jesmond Saunders

‘This ride was really wonderful. I can’t say enough good things about the guides. They were absolute champs, so experienced and helpful, and great to talk to. I was nearly moved to tears when they brought out a cake and sang Happy Birthday for me. So cool!
The horses were really well trained and willing. The day we got to swim the horses was the very best day, and the last night in the B&B was such a treat. I couldn’t be happier to have gone on this ride – it was truly spectacular country, and on horseback is the best way to see it. I had a fabulous time and would love to go back!’

Glenorchy Back Country Ride, South Island, New Zealand - Globetrotting horse riding holidays

Susie O'Neill

‘If you are considering doing one of these rides, just DO IT! An amazing experience for any horse lover or traveller. Every day was spectacular. My horse Dylan was perfect… a well educated, safe little Appaloosa Quarter Horse who looked after me every day. Our guides were skilled in horsemanship, cooking and conversation among other things, and went above and beyond to make this ride incredible. I couldn’t recommend them highly enough. The food was delicious and served in huge quantities – dinners were spent laughing and sharing stories together.
Just an all-round amazing experience.’

Glenorchy Back Country Ride, South Island, New Zealand - Globetrotting horse riding holidays

Rachel Gray

‘I had an incredible time on the Glenorchy Back Country Ride, soaking in the beautiful scenery in the company of wonderful horses and people. Every day was a new adventure, with all the necessary comforts waiting for us at the end of the day’s ride. It was relaxed but also action packed, a perfect getaway to forget your troubles and just enjoy the moment. I loved swimming the horses – it was such a special experience. I rode Merlin and he was wonderful. All the horses on the ride looked to be much better than any other trail riding horses I have ridden before. The guides far exceeded expectations and it was a great pleasure to spend a week exploring the beautiful scenery in their company. Every moment was truly a joy, with our group of riders and guides always chatting and having fun. A priceless experience – paradise.’

Glenorchy Back Country Ride, South Island, New Zealand - Globetrotting horse riding holidays

Shar-ron Hillary

‘I’d definitely recommend this trip! Every day was different and interesting; I enjoyed the whole experience. The accommodation was great, even the tents. Our guides were exceptional in every area, guiding our group with experience and a sense of humour. At the start I was hesitant, but they matched me with a perfect pony called Solly who took great care of me. I completely trusted their pairing and Solly really built my confidence. I fell in love with him!’

Glenorchy Back Country Ride, South Island, New Zealand - Globetrotting horse riding holidays

Anne Coombs

‘This is the first long ride I’ve done, and the first Globetrotting ride, but it won’t be the last. The whole experience was terrific, and excellent value for money. I really loved the last night at Paradise. Our guides, Jess and Bijmin, were exceptional, and I couldn’t believe how well Casey matched horses with riders. I rode JT and he was fabulous. I like a horse with a bit of ‘go’, so he was just right for me. I would definitely recommend this ride!’

Glenorchy Back Country Ride, South Island, New Zealand - Globetrotting horse riding holidays

Marina Larcombe

‘My Glenorchy Back Country Ride was sublime… beyond expectations. The horses were exceptional. I was allocated the most divine, well-schooled, spirited gelding called Doobie, and we bonded instantly, as did the other riders with their steeds. Spending time with these stunning horses was a gift. We had snow the night before our trek (capping the mountains), sunshine for a few days (flushing the lupines), rain one day (flooding the streams) and sunshine on our last day; the perfect mix for exploring this striking landscape. Plus, our hosts and guides were among some of the nicest people I’ve ever met – generous, warmhearted and highly skilled. They tended to our every need, providing nourishing meals, welcoming lodgings and inspired conversations. I’ve made so many new friends from the experience and I’m blessed to have made the journey.’

Glenorchy Back Country Ride, South Island, New Zealand - Globetrotting horse riding holidays

Sharon Rayne

‘I absolutely loved the Glenorchy Back Country Ride, it exceeded all expectations! The experience of riding through New Zealand’s most stunning, scenic back country was just incredible. We did the most amazing river crossings, rode through beautiful beech forests, up and down hills, and alongside the stunning Diamond Lake. The horses were very well looked after, kind and willing, and our guide Shaun was absolutely brilliant. I’m not a regular rider and wondered how my body would cope, but it was no problem. I rode Spud and he was the perfect confidence builder – we had some great canters and a gallop. Although none of us knew each other, it was a lovely small group and we had some great laughs and formed good friendships. It was my first Globetrotting ride and I’m hooked!’

Glenorchy Back Country Ride, South Island, New Zealand - Globetrotting horse riding holidays

Lisa Birkensleigh

‘The Glenorchy Back Country Ride was an amazing treat for the senses. Spectacular New Zealand scenery and varied riding challenges across crystal clear rivers, through forests and over mountains, all with a backdrop of glaciers and snow-capped mountains… incredible! I rode Peso – I loved her. Very sweet and responsive when I asked her to be, but cruised along otherwise. She was quite laid-back and had a nice comfortable canter, so she was a relaxing ride, but always up for some fun. Jess and Bijmin were helpful and friendly – we were very well looked after. I loved every day!’

STORIES FROM THE SADDLE

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