Portugal Virtual

Horse Riding

Portugal > Horse Riding

Versão Portuguesa

Horse Riding in Portugal
Portugal has a strong equestrian tradition dating back to long before Roman times and the Lusitano horse is world famous. Portugal was one of the leading countries during the age of discovery and had a vast empire in South America, Africa and Asia. Today a rich culture remains and Portuguese art and architecture draw many visitors from around the world. Horseback riding is deeply woven into the rich culture of the country and it has produced some fine international riders, particularly in dressage.

Unlike the Spanish, the Portuguese do not kill the bull in the ring. Instead it is a breathtaking exhibition of equestrian skill and teamwork between horse and rider where the bull’s horns sometimes come within inches of the horse. In many ways it is similar to the performance of a champion cutting horse and rider. No doubt the practical need for teamwork between horse and rider for working cattle, hunting and warfare were at the origin of dressage.

Portugal's economy is still based to a large extent on fishing and farming. This makes it all the better for horseback riding. Southern Portugal also has a very temperate climate which makes it one of the few places in the world where it is pleasant to ride all year. The landscape is most attractive with olive groves, cork trees and vineyards. The riding tours are often near the unspoiled Atlantic coast, providing spectacular views.
Horse Riding in Portugal

Horse Riding in Portugal

The Portuguese School of the Art of Riding

The Escola Portuguesa de Arte Equestre is located in Queluz, Lisbon.
The art of riding - the Liberal and Noble art of horsemanship as it was called by the 18th century writer Manuel Carlos de Andrade in his classic treatise - has only survived the disappearance of the Royal Ridlng School due to the force of the tradition and the devotion of dedicated enthusiasts. In this respect the continued practice of classical bullfighting on horseback has proved invaluable, containing as it does most of the movements of Haute École. In fact Portuguese horsemen have kept to the kind of horse and horsemanship as well as (almost) the same costume and harness as were used In the Royal Riding School in the XVIII th century - and are now adopted by the Escola Portuguesa de Arte Equestre.
The Escola Portuguesa de Arte Equestre was established in 1981, for the purpose of the teaching and practice of the traditional arts of riding, and making them more widely known.
The stallions used by the School are from the Natlonal Stud Alter.
Shows of the Portuguese Cavalry School at 11:00 every Wednesday between May and October (except in August).
The Portuguese School of the Art of Riding

The Lusitanian Horse

The south of the Iberian peninsula is the cradle of a breed of horse whose origins can be traced back to prehistoric. Cave paintings in the area prove that the first saddle-horse appeared in this part of the world. The breed, still exists to this day, takes on different names according to where it is reared: Andalusian in Spain, Lusitanian in Portugal. For some thousands of years Iberian cavalry rode gineta, using very short stirrups, which enabled the rider great mobility and efficiency in combat. The battles won by the Spaniards against the French during the Italian wars of the 15th and 16th centuries resulted in the foundation in Naples of the first modern riding Academy, here, a new style developed with the fusion of the Iberian with the French and Italian styles of riding. It then spread all over Europe, being known in Vienna, appropriately, as the Spanish Riding School. The brilliant Portuguese tradition, developed by numerous authorities and celebrated horsemen, received a great impulse when, with the encouragement of the Queen Maria Anna of Austria and the Prince (later king) D. José, King João V founded in 1748 the Royal Stud at Alter. The stud which continues at the same place, was given new life in 1942 when the rebuilding began of the Alter-Real breed - a variant of Lusitanian. To house the Royal Riding School, King D. José, for his part, built the Royal Manège at Belém, now the home of the National Coach Museum.

The Lusitanian Horse

Horse Riding Holidays

Westin Campo Real Resort   Quinta Marinha Resort
Campo Real Resort
Quinta da Marinha Resort

Campo Real Resort *****
The Westin Campo Real Golf Resort & Spa is a luxury 5-star resort just 30 minutes north of Lisbon and 15 minutes from the beaches of the Lisbon Coast. The Equestrian Center is managed by the renowned rider, Miguel Athayde and belongs to the Portuguese network of Equestrian Centres and offers state of the art facilities for riding lessons and training competition horses.
The Quinta da Marinha Riding Center in Cascais is located close to the Guincho beach and surronded by the Atlantic Ocean. Various infrastructures are available, including: Indoor arena, Paddocks, Show Ground with grandstand, Riding School, Horse Shop,  Farrier, Saddler, Hacking,Outdoor Arenas, Racing track. Nearest accommodation Quinta da Marinha Resort *****
Quinta da Fé (Guest House & Horse Riding Center)
Located in in a beautiful 11 ha property, the owner, a qualified horse-riding instructor, breeds and trains the famous Lusitanian horses, as well as coaches riders from the basic level (beginners) until Haute ècole Dressage.
The Portuguese School of the Art of Riding

Quinta da Fe   Estalagem Cegonha
Quinta da Fé
Estalagem da Cegonha
Portugal > Horse Riding

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Horse Riding