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Horse World Riding Stables, Kissimmee
This is our 6th year on a ‘trot’ visiting Orlando and we thought we would like to try some alternative days out. We have never been horse trekking before and the stables website - made it look interesting – none of us are really horse riders ( apart from the odd donkey ride on Blackpool beach!)
We rang up the stables and reserved an afternoon trek. We did not have to leave any deposit, worth remembering as the weather is somewhat unpredictable in August. It is not a cheap hour’s outing but very worthwhile – we felt we had seen the ‘other side’ of Florida’.
We had to arrive half an hour earlier than our time allocated to sign forms. We decided to wave the hard hats option as it was only a walking trek – were we wise?! The man in charge decided which horse would suit which person. There was an 8, 12, 16 year old, my husband and myself in our family. We were mounted on our horses by a set of steps and platform, probably a good job as some of the horses were larger than I thought they might have been! They then put the horses in a particular order and you are under strict instructions not to let the horses stray or let them eat any of the vegetation. You are also told that because these horses are western horses you only ride them with one hand on the saddle the other on the reins.
When I got on ‘Mystery’ I was asked if I’d ridden before. I have ridden a long time ago and the guide told me he was one of the naughtier ones and I had to be firm with him!! Our trek got under way. We were guided by 2 riders who kept a close eye on us. We were taken on a country trek where beautiful butterflies flew passed us plus other unusual flying creatures. I was glad that we had made sure that we were wearing plenty of sun cream as you cannot move around too much to avoid the sun. We did not see any ground creatures. My children coped well really well with the ride & quite fancied themselves as cowboys I think!
Unfortunately my ride did not go as expected! Mystery suddenly decided it was time for a lie down. Luckily I have watched all of the Rob Roy and Trigger re-runs and when he knelt down on his fore legs I knew it was time to jump off or break a leg. I managed to get my feet out of the stirrups before Mystery rolled on top of me and to get back on after the guides checked both I and the horse were ok. We made it back to the stables but I was quite shaken it made me realise that these horses are proper working horses and need to be treated with caution.
We really enjoyed our outing on the whole – it was certainly something to talk about around the villa pool (whilst I consumed a very large gin & tonic!) I would definitely recommend the outing but make sure you do take safety very seriously and remember that these horses do have their own minds!
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