Horse riding is not the first thing that comes to mind when you picture this region, but it could be, for equestrian pursuits are certainly well represented on the Costa del Sol. In fact, from Sotogrande in the west to Mijas – and well beyond – in the east, horse lovers come across a very wide range of options. These include stables, lessons, guided trips, horse racing, polo, equestrian shows, beautiful riding trails in the countryside, and even that rare luxury of galloping free on the beach.
Sotogrande – golf, yachting and polo
Among the three unique – and highly seductive – elements that sum up Sotogrande and help create its singular charm and appeal, polo is perhaps the one that stands out most. The Santa María Club in the heart of this elegant residential resort forms the green, elegant hub of the sport in the Mediterranean part of Europe. In addition to its beautiful playing fields and stylish hospitality facilities, the club also features expansive stables, a veterinary centre and stud farm.
Just outside Estepona, near the five-star Kempinski hotel, is the Costa del Sol School of Equestrian Art welcomes not only accomplished and beginner horse riders, as well as providing stables, coaching and even a specialised shop, but also the ability to watch the beauty of Spanish Riding School displays and dressage shows live. Here, the noble grace of the purebred Spanish horse takes centre stage.
Marbella and surroundings
There are a great many more stables and riding centres to choose from in the greater Marbella area, from the exclusive riding club of the private La Zagaleta country club and that of the Marbella Club Equestrian Centre to smaller stables and schools dotted around the area. They include the El Hinojal Equestrian Centre in Mijas, Artequus and the Lauro Golf Riding Centre in Alhaurin de la Torre, El Rocío in Coín, the Arrocha and Los Caireles riding clubs in Marbella, Hacienda Moreno in Alhaurin el Grande and many others – all providing specialised services and expert care in case your Marbella home doesn’t come with stables of its own.
There are country properties and luxurious villas in Marbella and surroundings that do have their own private stables and even riding trails, but you’ll never be far away from a first-class equestrian centre that provides all the necessary facilities and professional support services. The rich Andalusian equestrian tradition can also be admired in the country estates, stud farms and flamenco and horsemanship shows to be found in the mountainous hinterland, Seville and the Jerez area, while the annual beach race at Sanlúcar de Barrameda is a unique experience horse lovers won’t find anywhere else.
Contact Winkworth if you would like more information about the properties for sale on the Costa del Sol.