"Once around the island with trail guides who know the subtropical island like the back of their hand and thats all with perfect trail horses."
-Mein Pferd (german horse magazine), Dec. 2018-
THE GENERAL TRAIL ROUTE
Arrival at Faial (Airport Horta – HOR), transfer to PÁTIO Lodge and first contact with the horses. Communal dinner. Overnight.
Today’s ride passes through lonely countryside. We might pass occasionally farmers on their way to their cattle. The Atlantic Ocean sparkles in the sunlight. We will enjoy a picnic at the Cabouco Forest Park. After cantering past hedges of hydrangea bushes we reach the old Lighthouse ""Farol da Ribeirinha"" with impressive views of the volcano Pico. Communal dinner. Overnight.
The second relaxing day of riding takes us along the east coast. The giant heather bushes alongside the trail look a bit like gigantic broccoli plants. We do a break at the black lava beach of Praia Almoxarife. The afternoon’s ride takes us to the historic Quinta São Lourenço. The farm is located close to the island’s beautiful town, Horta. You have enough time to take a stroll around the town - visiting the colourful harbour and taking a break at the most famous bar between Europe and America, Peter Café Sport. This bar offers the best gin tonic in the Atlantic Ocean. Communal dinner. Overnight.
The trail continues through the beautiful green valley of Flamengos. A steep track leads us up into the valley, where the air smells of thyme and mint. Long straight trails through the forest are perfect for cantering. After a picnic in the countryside we arrive in the village of Varadouro full of orchards and vineyards surrounded by old black stone walls. After riding through the jungle, we reach our horses’ accommodation for the evening. Communal dinner. Overnight.
Today’s trail leads us to the impressive and bizarre volcanic desert landscape of Capelinhos. We pass ruins of old houses buried with ash from the volcano’s last eruption in 1957. The highly awarded Volcano Center is located underneath the lighthouse, buried with ash from the eruption. We ride over volcanic ash and enjoy a break at a small volcanic cave. A long canter around the green volcano Cabeço Verde takes us back to our horses’ paddock. Communal dinner. Overnight.
Today we arrive at the black beach of the tip of Fajã Bay. After a beautiful canter in a wonderful eucalyptus forest we follow the steep trail down to Fajã Bay. This uniquely beautiful location is home of vineyards, gardens and wildly romantic places. Today’s ride is a little shorter, and gives us time for an individual relaxing like a swim in the Atlantic or a stroll along the coast in the afternoon. Communal dinner. Overnight.
This is the last day of our trail. We cross the island from the dry south to the green north, enjoying views over terraced meadows down to the blue ocean. At lunchtime we arrive at Faial’s highest located village Ribeira Funda where we enjoy a picnic at the viewpoint. Seated on sun-warmed stone benches we can listen to the wind and the wild cries of the buzzards. We move closer and closer to our final destination. We pass the old whale watching point Vigia dos Cedros and complete our circular trail of the island, returning to the Lodge with our horses. This evening we enjoy a farewell banquet at the Lodge.
After breakfast we offer an airport transfer for departure, or you can decide on an individual extension of your stay. WHALES & VOLCANOES