10 Best Family Riding Safari Holidays in Africa

July 28th 2015  |  Botswana, Family Safaris, Kenya, Riding Safaris, South Africa, Tanzania, Wildlife Safaris  |  by  Alice Gully
family riding safaris at Ants Hill

Many of Africa’s most famous riding safaris cater for experienced riders aged 16 and over, but for families wishing to travel with younger children, there’s still plenty of choice – and excitement. Here’s our pick of the best African family riding holiday for those under and over 14, and adult beginner riders.

Family riding holiday, beginners & children aged under 14

Ant’s Hill and Ant’s Nest, South Africa

This privately owned game reserve is just a four hour drive north of Johannesburg in the Malaria free Waterberg region. No predators means safe riding, and with a large string of horses, Ants can cater for both beginners and advanced riders alike. As the horses live out with the safari wildlife they are really used to the local game and you can get closer to the animals than in most other areas.

Girl with a grey horse and giraffe, family riding holidays at Ants Hill and Ants Nest, Waterberg, South Africa

An encounter most precious, Ants Hill and Ants Nest, Waterberg, South Africa

Ants Hill children on horseback, Ants Hill and Ants Nest, Waterberg, South Africa

Children enjoying their freedom, Ants Hill and Ants Nest, Waterberg, South Africa

Borana Lodge, Kenya

Set on a privately owned reserve in the shadows of Mount Kenya, Borana has a wide variety of horses suitable for all standard of rider, and all ages too! Safari days are tailored to suit each family’s requirements, from swimming in the pool or a waterfall, to riding on one of their safe steeds or watching wonderful wildlife from a Land Rover.

A girl strokes her horse at Borana Riding, Laikipia, Kenya

Safari horses adore the attention, Borana Riding, Laikipia, Kenya

Tswalu, Kalahari, South Africa

Tswalu is a  luxury lodge located on a malaria free private reserve on the edge of the Kalahari Desert in South Africa. Tswalu love taking children on riding safaris, and they even create a special pony camp in the stables for anyone who wants to fully immerse themselves in the horsey side of things. Meerkats can also be seen here; they are semi habituated so children can get up close and personal with them.

Children riding with guide at Tswalu, Kalahari, South Africa

Children on a lead rein safari, Tswalu, Kalahari, South Africa

Children setting off for a group hack, Tswalu, Kalahari, South Africa

Children and adult beginners setting off for a group hack, Tswalu, Kalahari, South Africa

Lewa Wilderness, Lewa, Kenya

Set in the pristine wilderness of one of Kenya’s biggest conservation success stories, Lewa Wilderness is a beautiful family home and the perfect setting for a family safari holiday. Riding is one of the many activities on offer here, and exploring the bush on horseback is a lovely way to view the fantastic wildlife. Short rides can be arranged for novices and younger jockeys, while longer, more exciting, rides can be arranged for more experienced riders.

Children riding near to giraffe, Lewa Wilderness, Lewa, Kenya

On horseback you can get closer to the wildlife, Lewa Wilderness, Lewa, Kenya

Kurland, Garden Route, South Africa

Kurland is a beautiful country hotel close to the lovely seaside town of Plettenberg Bay in South Africa’s Cape region. It offers the ultimate in family holidays with everything from child friendly rooms and private playrooms, to special children’s menu and babysitting. For families with riders, young children can be taken on Shetland pony rides, while older children can have riding and polo lessons. Quad biking to watch a polo match on the estate’s polo fields – complete with a delicious picnic – is a lovely way to while away an afternoon here.

A family and guide walk the horses at Kurland, Garden Route, South Africa

A guide, mother and children with ponies at Kurland, Garden Route, South Africa

Riders over 14 years old only

Safaris Unlimited, Kenya

Owned by the fantastic riding safari guide Gordie Church, Safaris Unlimited runs fun and exhilarating riding holidays through the incredible wildlife filled plains of the Masai Mara as well as other beautiful areas of Kenya. Since most of the riding holidays here are privately tailored it’s a great choice for families looking for an African riding safari. Gordie guides, the wildlife is astonishing, accommodation is great and the food wonderful. A great pick for the ultimate family riding safari.

Riders amongst wildebeest, Safaris Unlimited, Kenya

Riders and guides with Gordie Church amongst buffalo, Safaris Unlimited, Kenya

Riding amongst antelope herd, Safaris Unlimited,Kenya

Morning ride with an antelope herd, Safaris Unlimited, Kenya

African Horseback Safaris, Okavango Delta, Botswana

From swimming your horse through the waters of Botswana’s Okavango Delta and eating pizza made in an ant’s hill, to playing giant Jenga at night, there’s never a dull moment on a riding holiday at African Horseback Safaris. In addition to riding you can also explore the area and its wildlife by foot, on a vehicle and by boat.

Women and guides galloping through water, African Horseback Safaris, Botswana

Guests and guides galloping through flood water, African Horseback Safaris, Botswana

Women and guide swimming with their horses, African Horseback Safaris

Guests and guide swimming with their safari horses, African Horseback Safaris, Botswana

Singita Grumeti Riding Safaris, Serengeti, Tanzania

This riding outfit has know closed but the  Singita Grumeti camp is still open to guests for safari. Please contact us for alternatives.

Singita Grumeti is probably the most luxurious and exclusive mobile riding safari in the whole of Africa. The riding is in a private concession area of Tanzania’s famous Serengeti National Park, open only to guests of Singita Grumeti. Aside from excellent wildlife, there’s also the chance – between June and October – to ride with the wildebeest migration which is arguably the most exciting thing you can do on horseback.

A picnic on a plain with horses and riders, Grumeti, Tanzania

Lunch with style Photographer: Singita Grumeti

Riders walking with a zebra herd, Singita Grumeti, Tanzania

Riding in Africa, Singita Grumeti, Tanzania

Offbeat Riding Safaris, Kenya

Offbeat Riding Safaris offer a wonderfully varied range of safari activities and will put together great trips for those travelling with a mix of riders and non-riders. The riders can experience the exhilaration of riding on wonderful horses through the Masai Mara, one of Africa’s premier wildlife areas, while the non-riders can enjoy the same wildlife exploring on foot or by safari vehicle. A great way to keep everyone happy and experience the holiday of a lifetime.

A river crossing convoyof riders, Offbeat Riding Safaris, Kenya

A river crossing convoy, Offbeat Riding Safaris, Kenya

Riders walkiing up Olololo Escarpment, Offbeat Safaris, Kenya

Olololo Escarpment, Offbeat Riding Safaris, Kenya

Riding with the wildebeest herd, Offbeat Riding Safaris, Kenya

Riding with the herd, Offbeat Riding Safaris, Kenya

Okavango Horse Safaris, Okavango Delta, Botswana

Riding safaris here move between permanent luxury tented camps and more rustic fly camps so you get to see as much of the vast Okavango Delta as possible. There’s no WiFi or phone reception, so teenagers are forced to relish the local surroundings! Among the many riding highlights are long canters alongside giraffe on the floodplains and swimming the horses through the Delta. When your bottom tires, you can explore by vehicle, on foot, by boat or even drop a line in the hope of catching a fish. With our expert knowledge of top class horses and guides, we can arrange a family riding safari to suit all levels of ability. Please contact Aardvark Safaris.

Elephants frolicking, riders in the background, Okavango Horse Safaris, Botswana

Elephants frolicking, Okavango Horse Safaris, Botswana

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