Horseback Riding in Costa Rica
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Horseback riding in Costa Rica is one of the most popular ways to explore the country’s variety of terrains, from the sandy beaches and tropical jungles to the cloud forests and steep mountains. This popular activity dates back to the 1500s when the Spanish brought horses to Costa Rica as working animals — but today, horses in Costa Rica are used for tourism much more than for transportation.
If you’re hoping to go on a horseback riding tour in Costa Rica, learn everything you need to know about horseback riding below — including the best places for horseback riding, tips and requirements, and the most popular horseback riding tours in Costa Rica!
Best Places for Horseback Riding in Costa Rica
Rincon de la Vieja National Park
Costa Rica’s Guanacaste Province — where you’ll find Rincon de la Vieja National Park — has roots firmly planted in cattle farming. Because of this, horseback riding with the local sabaneros (or cowboys) through this national park is a fun way to spend a day in Costa Rica. During a horseback riding experience in Rincon de la Vieja National Park, you’ll have the chance to pass hot springs, stunning waterfalls, magnificent volcanoes, and other beautiful scenery for a memorable adventure.
Monteverde Cloud Forest Reserve
The Monteverde Cloud Forest Reserve is one of the most popular places to explore in Costa Rica. For a unique point of view, consider exploring the trails in this tropical forest on a horseback riding tour. While riding through the Monteverde Cloud Forest, you’ll have the chance to see lush jungle terrain, coffee plantations, and tons of wildlife — especially birds, like the rare Resplendent Quetzal.
Arenal Volcano National Park
Arenal Volcano National Park is one of the most popular destinations for horseback riding in Costa Rica. There are plenty of places to explore on horseback in Costa Rica — more experienced riders can trek up the volcano itself or embark on the steep (but safe) hike to La Fortuna Waterfall, while beginners might feel more comfortable riding horseback around Lake Arenal or through the beautiful jungle terrain. Whether you venture up mountains or around a lake, you’ll surely love spending a few hours riding horseback through Arenal Volcano National Park.
Manuel Antonio National Park
Manuel Antonio National Park is a great destination for horseback riding in Costa Rica if you want to experience the best of both worlds — the beach, mountains, and jungle! You can ride horseback on the white-sand beaches of Manuel Antonio National Park or in the mountains past the waterfalls further inland. You will also have the opportunity to see tons of wildlife while riding through the park, like Scarlet Macaws and White-Faced Monkeys.
Pacific Coast Beaches
Costa Rica beaches are one of the most memorable destinations for a horseback riding tour in Costa Rica. There are tons of spectacular beaches along the Pacific Coast, including Playa Brasilito, Playa Avellanas, and Jaco Beach. These beaches are stunning and the perfect place for a memorable horseback riding adventure you’ll never forget!
Helpful Tips for Horseback Riding in Costa Rica
Be sure to wear long pants, closed-toed shoes, sunscreen, and bug spray to your horseback riding tour in Costa Rica. You’ll also want to bring a water bottle to stay hydrated and will want to wear a helmet — these are usually provided by the horseback riding tour operators.
Horseback Riding Requirements in Costa Rica
It’s important to follow basic safety protocols when horseback riding in Costa Rica. As we mentioned earlier, always wear a helmet, closed-toed shoes, and long pants, and use the proper gear and equipment, like a saddle and reins. Most (if not all) equipment should be provided by the tour operator.
The horseback riding weight limit is usually 250 pounds, and you should be fit enough to endure some minor strain from controlling your horse — especially on longer tours. However, horseback riding is generally a pretty mild activity that can be enjoyed by all ages, making it a great activity to enjoy in Costa Rica for family reunions, multigenerational trips, and more!
Best Horseback Riding Tours in Costa Rica
There are plenty of horseback riding tours in Costa Rica to choose from during your vacation. However, we recommend the following tours that provide convenient transportation to and from your vacation rental with Special Places of Costa Rica.
Horseback Riding at Diamante Eco Adventure Park
If you’re looking for an affordable guided horseback tour in Guanacaste, consider this horseback riding tour at Diamante Eco Adventure Park. For just $55 per person, you can ride along the sandy shores of Playa Matapalo for one hour. This tour is open to all children eight and above and for groups of up to nine travelers, so it’s the perfect family-friendly horseback riding adventure in nature for all ages.
El Roble Horseback Riding
This El Roble Horseback Riding Tour is just $55 per person and leads a group of at least four travelers through the lush scenery in Coyolito — a small town in Guanacaste located directly east of Tamarindo. This short two-hour ride is available for children ages four and above and is bound to be one of the most memorable experiences during your vacation in Costa Rica.
Plan a Horseback Riding Tour from Your Costa Rican Vacation Rental with Special Places of Costa Rica
Horseback riding is undoubtedly one of the best ways to explore multiple terrains in Costa Rica — from beaches and mountains to rainforests and mangroves — with minimal effort. Plus, you’ll be able to learn interesting information about the flora, fauna, landscapes, and sights along the way.
If you’re planning a trip to Costa Rica soon, we hope you’ll stay in one of our beachfront houses, cozy condos, or luxury mansions in the Guanacaste Province of Costa Rica. Browse our available rentals to see the options available during your vacation dates.