What to take on a Horse Riding Holiday

The prime considerations are safety and comfort, rather than style.

When you make a reservation, we will send you a recommended “What to Bring list” specifically tailored for your holiday as well as a local country guide. If you are a regular rider then you will probably already have most things on the list.

Choice of footwear is one of the most common questions and for most rides we suggest ankle boots with a rubber sole.


Riding helmet
The most important item to bring on a riding holiday is a properly fitted riding helmet that complies with Australian standards.  Please check with your insurance company if there are any current standard rules. It is always best to bring your own for comfort and fit.

Although some riding companies may provide riding helmets and this is ok for one or two short rides but also imagine how many other people have worn the helmet before you. You also don’t know how old the helmet is and if it has any previous knocks.

Riding boots and chaps
A good pair of riding boots designed for riding and walking.  You may have to walk beside your horse in rough terrain so full length leather soled riding boots may not be suitable.  Boots combined with half leg chaps for comfort and protection of your jodhpurs or leggings. 

Riding pants
Two pairs of riding trousers – jodhpurs are best for anything except possibly western saddles.  Cotton jodhpurs are best in hot climates as synthetic materials do not breathe.  If you do decide to ride in jeans or normal trousers you may find that the seam on the inside of the leg may rub against the stirrup leathers causing painful chafing after a day or so.

A change of shirt, underwear and socks for everyday is also wise.  Long sleeved shirts are best as they protect you from the sun and cold and sleeves can be rolled up if necessary.  In case of cold wear layers with a t-shirt underneath and fleece/warm jumper/waterproof over the top.  A water bottle is a must for most rides, it is easy to become dehydrated without realising when riding for long hours in sunny or windy conditions.

A bum bag is handy to carry your camera, lip balm, sunglasses and any other useful items.

Weather and Type of holiday

Broad brimmed hat for use while off the horse and a riding helmet cover with brim which fits over your riding helmet.  This should stay on firmly when cantering.  Sunglasses with an elasticised string to keep them on.  A pair of sandals to wear in the evening or on rest days.  A sarong (doubles up as dust protection while riding and a lightweight sleeping sheet at night) and swimming costume/shorts.  Sunblock is also essential as you will be out in the elements most of the day.  Ensure the sunblock is a higher factor.  Light weight long sleeved shirt with light colours is best for very hot climates.  Check to see if you need an insect repellent.  If you do take one with a high % of deet as possible and preferably in a spray or stick application for ease of use.  Extra moisturiser and a spare water bottle.

It is recommended to wear layers to keep out the cold and you can remove clothing as necessary.  Polar fleeces, long sleeve cotton tops and t-shirts, wind and water proof jackets to keep you warm.

Your overcoat should be waterproof and not just water repellent and should protect your neck.  Make sure your riding helmet has a brim wide enough to drip outside the neck opening.  Lined waterproof

Dressage Holidays
You are normally out of the elements in an indoor arena so rain and sun may not affect you so much.  If you are travelling in the warmer months cotton jodhpurs and cotton underwear and tops are important.  Riding helmet and full-length riding boots or short boots and chaps are both suitable and riding gloves.

Non-riding tours travelling to special events – A packing list and newsletters with updated information will be sent to you.  We will also provide you with more detailed information relevant to the destination you are travelling to.

Safety Standards

Safety standards and laws can be different in overseas countries so be mindful of this.  Some countries do not require you to wear a riding helmet and you may see many riders without a helmet, but please for your own safety always wear a helmet as you may not be covered by insurance if something should happen.

We like to visit the riding places we sell or we have prior knowledge of excellent operators that provide high safety standards, have high standards of horsemanship and excellent customer relations.

Make sure you book through a reputable specialist agency who will provide you with complete packing lists as well as further information on the weather.  We regularly research our destinations and always checking for updates as many riding places can change hands, riding instructors leave and equestrian centres close down.  For impartial and honest information on choosing a riding holiday please give us a call.

Our staff are also well travelled and as we are also a travel agency we can make suggestions on other non-riding places to visit in the region or help you with other travel plans.

Snaffle Travel is an accredited ATAS/AFTA fully licenced Travel Agency.  Our Travel company is fully insured with the appropriate tour operator’s insurance for all of our holidays and our tour hosts have current first aid training.

We are happy to answer any questions you may have and always welcome any feedback on your holiday.