Must-do horse riding experiences in NSW

There’s no better way to explore the natural bounty of NSW than on the back of a horse. And the state has some incredible riding experiences in store for avid equestriennes. Gallop along bush trails, across rivers and along beaches. Prepare to be wowed.

Destination NSW

Destination NSW

May 2024 -
min read

North Coast 

Ride along the beautiful sandy beaches of Port Stephens with Sahara Trails, a magical experience across the dunes and pristine coastline of the Worimi Conservation Lands. You can also sign up for experiences through bushland, or for beginner rides with plenty of hands-on instruction and care. Not too far north you’ll find Horse About Tours in Tuncurry in the Great Lakes region of the North Coast. Riders can choose between two- and three-hour daily beach and bush rides which traverse through the native bush and onto the magnificent white swathes of sand. 

Horse riding along the beach, Worimi Conservation Lands, Port Stephens

Beach horse riding, Worimi Conservation Lands, Port Stephens

Looking for a ride of a different kind? In Port Macquarie, you can ride camels on the beach with Port Macquarie Camel Safaris. No bookings are necessary – just drop by and hop on. Back to the equine rides… Port Macquarie Horse Riding Centre is located just 10 minutes out of town, and is a great place to get back to nature on trail rides through the picturesque Cassegrain Wines' vines. They also offer a full-day program during the school holidays for children aged six and over and pony rides for younger enthusiasts. 

 Beginner Trail Ride with Port Macquarie Horse Riding Centre at Cassegrain Winery, Port Macquarie

Port Macquarie Horse Riding Centre, Port Macquarie - Credit: Port Macquarie Horse Riding Centre

Further north in Coffs Harbour, HWH Stables offers rides along Boambee Beach or through the lush Orara Valley. Depending on how much time you have, you can participate in one-, two- or three-hour rides. It doesn’t matter how experienced you are – everyone is invited. 

Further north still, Zephyr Horses is based in the lush landscapes of Byron Bay. The crew here offer small, personalised horse tours – both on the beach and in the beautiful sub-tropical woodlands, suitable for all levels of riders. 

People on a horse ride on the beach with Zephyr Horses, Byron Bay

Zephyr Horses, Byron Bay

Hunter Valley 

The countryside and vineyards of the Hunter Valley wine region are ideal for exploring on the back of a horse. And there are a number of riding schools and companies you can choose from for an outdoor adventure of the four-legged kind. Saddle up to trot around the Molly Morgan Range with Hunter Valley Horse Riding Adventure in Rothbury, where trail rides are available for beginners and advanced riders. Experiences include picnic rides, sunset rides, as well as pony jaunts for tiny tots. 

Nearby in Pokolbin you’ll find Chapman Valley Horse Riding making the most of the 240-hectare estate it calls home, while Hunter Valley Horses offers fun horse-and-carriage wine-tasting tours, for when you need a ‘designated driver’. Murchessons Equine Wine & Dine tours also let you sample the fruit of the Pokolbin region while you ride; trot through vineyards, then linger at cellar doors. 

Central Coast 

On the Central Coast is Australia’s largest horse riding centre – Glenworth Valley Outdoor Adventures. Here you’ll find 120 hectares of unspoilt wilderness where you can take guided rides, have a riding lesson or hire horses to explore on your own. You can also enlist to indulge in a gourmet picnic ride. Sound tasty? The estate is also home to all manner of other adventure activities, and there are camping and glamping sites alongside eco-villas, if you can’t bear to leave.

Blue Mountains 

Stay at glamping accommodation or cottages at Turon Gates Mountain Retreat in the World Heritage-listed Blue Mountains, and then go riding with their experienced team who cater for beginners to experienced riders and have ponies for the kids. Enjoy the beauty of the Australian bush on horseback, and you can even swim with your horse in the river. If you prefer to explore on two wheels, there are also great mountain biking trails across the property.  

Teenage girl with horse Horse riding at Turon Gates, Capertee

Horse riding at Turon Gates, Capertee - Credit: GM Photographics

South Coast 

Join Regal Riding School in Shoalhaven for a stroll along Seven Mile Beach. The crew here specialise in children's programs including trail rides – ‘Ready Set Trot’ introduces young people to the world of horses, teaching them fundamental horse skills and awareness within a safe and fun setting while also focusing on instilling core values such as responsibility, communication, respect, empathy and teamwork. If you’ve checked in to Bangalay Luxury Villas, you can organise your ride directly through the retreat’s concierge team. 

Further north at Stanwell Tops is Otford Farm, which has been operating since 1961, offering rides through lush rainforest and native bush as well as lessons with their experienced instructors. 

Bangalay Villa guests enjoying a beach horse ride on Seven Mile Beach - Shoalhaven Heads

Bangalay Luxury Villas, Shoalhaven Heads

Snowy Mountains 

Is there anything more iconic in Australia than riding a horse through the Snowy MountainsThredbo Valley Horse Riding lets you follow in the footsteps of The Man from Snowy River while taking in NSW’s dramatic high country – side note, the Snowy Mountains is the home of the wild brumby and Australia’s highest peak, so you’ll have plenty of natural inspiration while you ride. You’ll find more exhilarating horse riding adventures in the legendary high country and Kosciuszko National Park with Cochran Horse Treks, offering multi-day camping treks that reveal the beauty of this part of the state in all its glory.  

Group horse riding tour with Thredbo Valley Horse Riding, Thredbo Valley

Thredbo Valley Horse Riding, Thredbo Valley

The Riverina & The Murray 

The Riverina region is blessed with space, which equates to plenty of room for beautiful horses to flourish. Meet some of them at Wagga Equestrian School, which offers private horse riding lessons, shared horse riding lessons (with a maximum of three students), and school holiday clinics for kids from the age of six upwards. 

In The MurryBillabong Ranch offers a variety of rides to suit a range of ages and abilities. Join a leisurely ride through magnificent red gum forests, follow river trails, relax and build a friendship with your specially selected horse.  

People riding horses in autumn with Billabong Ranch Adventure Park, Echuca

Billabong Ranch Adventure Park, Echuca - Credit: Billabong Ranch Adventure Park

Country & Outback NSW 

When wide, open spaces beckon, look no further than country and outback NSW. In the opal mining town of Lightning Ridge, Grays Holler Horse Riding is a great base to get comfortable with friendly horses. The area is home to hot springs, so if your limbs are weary after a day of riding, you can always go for a therapeutic soak. Meanwhile, Tamworth & Kootingal Horse Riding Adventures in Australia’s country music capital lets you explore 560 hectares of rolling land on trail and pony rides, in the shadow of the Cockburn Range. 


What beaches can you ride a horse on in NSW?

What beaches can you ride a horse on in NSW?

There are plenty of places to ride along beaches, including Port Stephens, Port Macquarie, Coffs Harbour, Byron Bay, Shoalhaven and more.  

Can you ride horses in NSW National Parks?

Can you ride horses in NSW National Parks?

Yes! Many of NSW’s national parks allow horse riding as an outdoor adventure.  

Where can I learn how to ride a horse in Australia?

Where can I learn how to ride a horse in Australia?

Most horse riding operations in NSW cater to all levels of experience, which means that even if you are a beginner you can learn how to feel comfortable and improve your skills on the back of a horse.  

Where can I go horse riding in Sydney?

Where can I go horse riding in Sydney?

There are a number of places to go horse riding in Sydney, catering to all levels of experience.  

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