We’ve always known that the Castle & Estate Ride in Ireland is THE perfect ride for globetrotters looking to fast-track their horsemanship, especially beginners and those new to jumping. And Hope Towle is living proof! Earlier this year, Hope boosted her trail riding confidence on the Thirlestane Castle Ride in Scotland. Buoyed on by her success, she then turned her gaze towards the Emerald Isle. More well-trained horses, luxurious accommodation and magnificent countryside awaited, with one major difference: the chance to focus on jumping. With an indoor arena, over 300 cross country jumps scattered across the estate and expert instructors on hand, the Castle & Estate Ride took Hope’s riding to the next level!
Read on to see what she thought:
Were there any stand-out experiences (good or bad) with the accommodation that you would like to mention?
All staff at the lodge were friendly and accommodating. The rooms were clean and very cozy!
Were there any stand-out experiences (good or bad) with the meals that you would like to mention?
The five course tasting menu was phenomenal. And the ease of reserving tables made the experience much smoother. Breakfast was always lovely.
Which horse(s) did you ride? And would you mind elaborating as to why you were happy/unhappy with them?
Predominantly, I rode Arnie. He was big, comfortable, and I felt 100% safe to really take myself out of my comfort zone and try things like galloping, jumping, and cross country for the first times. He is a schoolmaster extraordinaire!
I spent the remainder of my week with the beautiful Blueberry. She is very sweet, strong, and willing. She was a nice contrast from my personal push-button lease horse, but I always left my rides/lessons with her feeling accomplished.
In respect to your guides, please elaborate as to their level of service, knowledge of the environment and hospitality.
The guides far surpassed my expectations for the trip! Steven, Gemma, and Orla are world class and I don’t believe I could think or speak of them more highly. Given how busy they are and the amount of rides/lessons/people they work with on a daily basis, it speaks volumes to their talent, level of service and care for the horses that they were still able to personalize our whole week to the point that we all felt comfortable and safe to leap out of our comfort zones. We all had so much respect for them!
I mostly had my estate jumping rides with Steven, as well as my first jumping lesson; he really made me feel comfortable enough to try to get the most out of my experiences aboard the trusty Arnie. All the lessons were small and focused, leaving me, at least, with a laundry list of things that I can improve moving forward. I wish I could have made this a month long holiday!
Did you have a favourite day or experience while on your Globetrotting holiday?
The balance of arena and estate work was my favorite part. If I had to narrow it down, I would say the indoor jumping lessons were my favorite experiences. It was something I had not done before this trip and the instructors did a phenomenal job, working with me to make sure each attempt felt better than the previous.
In terms of value-for-money, how would you rate this particular ride?
We would LOVE a testimonial about your Globetrotting experience to share on our social media channels.
I could not possibly find any critique of this ride! The instructors are extremely knowledgeable, approachable, and know exactly how to push you out of your comfort zone while keeping you feeling totally safe. I rode Blueberry and Arnie. Both horses were big, comfortable, and trustworthy; but different enough that I left with plenty to work on back at home. The horses and the team of instructors made me feel 100% safe to try many things for the first time. We arrived on Wednesday, my first ever jumping lesson was on Thursday, and I was clearing some cross country jumps by Sunday! I only wish I could have made this a month-long holiday! The staff at the Lodge and restaurants were lovely, the food was second to none, and the accommodations were beautiful. This ride was recommended to me as a confidence booster, and I truly believe that was an understatement.’
If the Castle & Estate Ride sounds like your kind of holiday, click here to learn more and book your ride of a lifetime!