Overview

This is a stunning circular trail through the east of the Alpujarras and Sierra Nevada National Park, riding over very diverse and varied terrain, 3 days at high altitude. An amazing display of  Mediterranean and Alpine flowers cover the mountains in May and June.

The first two days of this spectacular ride pass through the southern slopes of the Alpujarras following the ancient Moorish paths and forestry tracks between the picturesque white villages.

The third day we climb to the Peñon del Puerto and maintaining an altitude of over 2,700 metres follow the ridge east to the Puerto del Lobo and the Altos de San Juan.

Seemingly endless vista of mountains and plains give an amazing sense of space and wilderness. The fourth day keeping an altitude of between 2,000 and 2,500 metres the trail passes through the summer pastures and woodlands of the northern slopes.

Day five the path crosses the high peaks at nearly 3,000 metres to the south side of Sierra Nevada and the Sierra of Trevelez. Day six head home on forestry tracks.

A reasonable level of fitness is required as much of this ride is at high altitude (2 days at over 2,700 metres), on three days there are sections where it is necessary to lead your horse down hill on rough uneven ground for up to an hour. One night we are in a high mountain refuge of Postero Also where it is necessary to share rooms.

You stay in small comfortable village guest houses and each day your luggage is taken ahead for you. During the day there will be several rest stops and a leisurely picnic lunch of locally cured hams and cheeses accompanied by freshly baked bread and salads. Evening meals give you the opportunity to sample the unique local cuisine and Spanish wines.

Key Facts

  • Trail riding – Progressive
  • Set departures on Saturdays except August is Thursday
  • Operates May, June & August
  • 7 nights/8 Days (Shorter rides available)
  • Staying in locally run guest houses
  • Suits Intermediate and Experienced rider
  • Minimum: no minimum / Maximum 10 riders
  • Riding time – 3 – 9 hours with leisurely breaks
  • Weight limit: 90 kilos

Riding Details & Horses

These rides are suitable for competent to experienced riders, the horses are all well-schooled and forward going.

It is important that you can control a horse outside at all paces, and that you can mount and dismount without assistance.

Fitness – You will need to be reasonably fit to participate on one of these rides. In addition to being riding fit you will be required to lead your horse on some of the steep descents, and need to be comfortable walking on rough ground.  These rides are not for those who suffer from vertigo.

The horses are pure bred Andalucian (PRE) and Andalucian Arab or Sport horse crosses, ranging from 14.3 to 16.1 hands. Some of the horses are home bred, others came as youngsters, most of them stay with us for life.

They have been carefully selected for their good natures (a trait of the Spanish horse) and endurance. These are not the average riding school or trail horse, but well bred and schooled horses, responsive and fun to ride.

Great care is taken in the selection of horses according to the riding abilities and preferences of each individual.

English bridles and each horse will also have their own saddle. Normally these are an English style general purpose/endurance type of saddle, and are very comfortable.

Itinerary

La Buena Vista
This is a stunning circular trail through the east of the Alpujarras and Sierra Nevada National Park, riding over very diverse and varied terrain, 3 days at high altitude. An amazing display of  Mediterranean and Alpine flowers cover the mountains in May and June.

Day 1
Collection from Malaga airport at designated time and transfer to the picturesque village of Bubion, approximately a two hour drive.  While in Bubion you will stay in the comfortable guest house Casa La Sevillana. Enjoy dinner with your guide this evening.

Day 2
Heading east to the village of  Trevelez, the ride begins with a steep climb on an old bridle paths passing by ancient Moorish irrigation channels, sheep farms and old small holdings.  At 1,950 metres we join the main forestry track for 5-6 kilometres.  Here some nice canters are possible through the pine woods before rejoining the path. After a picnic lunch on the edge of the woods with panoramic views over the Contraviesa hills to the Mediterranean Sea the path starts the descent to the ravine ‘Barranco de la Vina’, approximately one hour with some sections on foot.

In the Barranco de la Vina we join another dirt track that takes us the final hour to the Village of Trevelez. At 1,486 metres Trevelez is the highest municipality in Spain, it is also famous for its air cured ham ‘Jamon Serrano’. Overnight and dinner in the comfortable Hotel La Fragua situated in the old Berber section of the village. A swimming pool is available. Approximately 6 hours riding.

Day 3
The route continues east to the village of Berchules. After a 10 minute walk through the streets of Trevelez we water the horses at one of the many springs, mount up and head down to the river.

Once across the river the path, many centuries old, follows first the Moorish irrigation channel and then works its way through oak and pine forests to the open pasture lands of the Sierra of Juviles.

Picnic lunch in the oak woods above the village of Juviles. After lunch the path continues for a while through the oak woods before joining the main dirt road for a steep climb to cross over to the small farms above Berchules. The final descent into the village of Berchules is on foot for about 30 minutes walk.

Overnight and dinner in the very comfortable Hotel Berchules, A swimming pool is available June to late September. Approximately 6 hours riding.

Day 4
A long ride leading to the summit of the eastern peaks of Sierra Nevada. A day of spectacular views and grandiose mountains. Leaving the village below we take the old path winding its way up through the valley above the cause of the river.

This path is over 1,000 years and a testimony to the craftmanship of the old builders. After a couple of hours leaving the path below us we join the main forestry track for about 4 km, here it is possible for some canters.

Leaving the valley of Berchules we climb for a couple of hours across open mountainside  to the Peñon del Puerto (2,760metres). From here we follow the ridge east for a further couple of hours to the Altos to San Juan (2,780metres), where we start a descent of approximately 600 metres.

This descent takes us down to the tree line to join up with a forestry track.   There are sections where it is necessary to lead the horses. Leaving the horses in the pine woods a vehicle will take us (approx.40 minutes) down to our hotel in the small village of Valor. Approximately 9 hours riding.

Day 5
Saddling our horses we return to the ridge of Puerto del Lobo to cross over to the north of Sierra Nevada.

After an initial descent of about 400 metres we follow small sheep, cattle and bridle paths a between 2,400 and 2,000 metres west along Sierra Nevada’s north face.

High Summer pastures, small streams and gullies, and lower down pine woods. Stunning views over the Altiplano and Guadix region. Tonight we stay in the high mountain refuge of Postero Alto.

Here it is necessary to share rooms and shower room. Bring sleeping-bag or sheets and a towel, the refuge provides blankets. Approximately 7 hours riding.

Day 6
Another spectacular day, following foot and bridle paths through the mountains. The morning starts with a steep climb to nearly 3,000m, where if there has been a good Winter there will still be snow drifts.

Passing over the summit we commence the descent into the valley of Trevelez on the southern side of Sierra Nevada. Small paths and old irrigation channels work their way along ridges and gullies and on down through pine and oak woods to the valley and village of Trevelez.

Spectacular views of the Mulhacen and the Alcazaba, at 3,486m and 3,378 m two of the highest peaks in Spain. To-day there are a number of descent where you need to lead the horse, the final one down to the village is nearly an hour.

Overnight in the comfortable Hotel Fragua in the village of Trevelez. A swimming pool is available. Approximately 9 hours riding.

Day 7
Today is a short ride. Following the forestry track through pine and oak woods we return directly to the stables high above the villages of the Poqueira.

This route not only offers wonderful views out over the Contraviesa mountains and the Mediterranean sea, with some good opportunities for canters.

Late lunch in the village of Capileira or Bubion. This afternoon is free for some last minute shopping and a well deserved siesta.  Overnight in the village of Bubion and enjoy a farewell dinner. Approximately 3 to 4 hours.

Day 8
Transfer to Malaga Airport at a pre-arranged time.

Food and Accommodation

Small family run guest houses and hotels offering twin bedded rooms with en-suite bathrooms. The accommodation is comfortable, clean and pleasant.  There is no porter services or lifts.

One night is spent in a high mountain refuge; the other six nights in comfortable village hotels (some with pools).

The food is fresh local produce, the area is famous for its air cured hams, cheese and trout.

A special effort is made to enable the visitor to sample the different local dishes, ordering what each place cooks best. Some days lunch will be in a small village, on others we will take a picnic.

Please specify if you have any special dietary requirements.

There is no single supplement if you are prepared to share a twin room. If you do not wish to share then it is usually possible to guarantee a single room by requesting it in advance and paying a single supplement.

Dates and Prices

2018 TRAIL RIDE SCHEDULE:

  • Departs every Saturday and finishes on a Saturday.
    Shorter trails may be available by request – please contact us for more information about these.
  • COSTS: 8 Days/7 nights €1470.00 (Please contact us for Australian conversion rate)
  • Single supplement €175.00
  •  2018: 26 May – 2 June, 23 June – 30 June (3 places left), 9 August – 16 August (Thursday to Thursday)
    Note: Rates are based on the Euros and subject to currency fluctuation.  We will convert rates at time of enquiry and confirm final charges prior to final balance.

Rates are based on the Euro and subject to currency fluctuation, so please contact us for the most up to date pricing for your riding holiday.

Includes

Eight day/Seven night trail ride

  • 7 nights accommodation
  • All meals from dinner on arrival day to breakfast on departure day
  • 6 days of riding, own horse throughout
  • English speaking guide and back up vehicle for luggage
  • Return transfers from Malaga at a pre-arranged time

Not included

  • Flights to Spain and accommodation prior to and after the tour
  • International travel insurance (Compulsory)
  • Drinks, tips and any incidentals not stated in the itinerary
  • Single supplement if required.  Must be advised at time of booking
  • ** Rates are based on Euro and subject to currency fluctuation **

Other Information

Location
Just over one hour to the coast, one hour and 15 minutes to Granada and a little over 2 hours from Malaga. Sierra Nevada covers an area of approximately 2,000 square kilometres in the provinces of Granada and Almeria in the south of Spain.

Weather
Due to the altitude the sun is very strong and it is essential to use sun protection all year. In the evening the temperature drops and even during the summer months a light jumper or jacket is required. In March, April, May and October you should bring warm clothing and waterproofs. The weather in Spring and Autumn in the mountains can be changeable and it is best to be prepared for all conditions.

Weather website: http://www.holiday-weather.com/

Languages – English and Spanish

Closest Airport & Train Station – Malaga & Granada

We will provide travel information and a packing list.

Terms and conditions apply.

For more information regarding the ride please email us at info@snaffletravel.com.au

You might also be interested in other group tours