10 Best Family Riding Safari Holidays in Africa

May 22nd 2024  |   Botswana, Family Safaris, Riding Safaris, Kenya, Wildlife Safaris, Countries, Experiences, South Africa, Tanzania  |  by   Alice Gully
family riding safaris at Ants Hill

Many of Africa’s most famous riding safaris cater for experienced riders aged 16 and over, but for families wishing to travel with younger children, there’s still plenty of choice – and excitement. Here’s our pick of the best African family riding holiday for adult beginner riders and children under 14.

Riding for beginners & children (under 14 years)

1. Ant’s Hill and Ant’s Nest, South Africa

This privately owned game reserve is just a four hour drive north of Johannesburg in the Malaria free Waterberg region. No predators means safe riding, and with a large string of horses, Ants can cater for both beginners and advanced riders alike. As the horses live out with the safari wildlife they are really used to the local game and you can get closer to the animals than in most other areas.

Family riding at Ant's Hill and Ant's Nest, South Africa

Family riding at Ant’s Hill and Ant’s Nest, South Africa

2. Borana Lodge, Kenya

Set on a privately owned reserve in the shadows of Mount Kenya, Borana has a wide variety of horses suitable for all standard of rider, and all ages too! Safari days are tailored to suit each family’s requirements, from swimming in the pool or a waterfall, to riding on one of their safe steeds or watching wonderful wildlife from a Land Rover.

Child with horse at Borana Riding Lodge

Safari horses adore the attention, Borana Riding, Kenya

3. Tswalu, South Africa

Tswalu is a  luxury lodge located on a malaria free private reserve on the edge of the Kalahari Desert in South Africa. Tswalu love taking children on riding safaris, and they even create a special pony camp in the stables for anyone who wants to fully immerse themselves in the horsey side of things. Meerkats can also be seen here; they are semi habituated so children can get up close and personal with them.

Children on a lead rein safari, Tswalu, Kalahari, South Africa

Children on a lead rein safari, Tswalu, Kalahari, South Africa

4. Lewa Wilderness, Kenya

Set in the pristine wilderness of one of Kenya’s biggest conservation success stories, Lewa Wilderness is a beautiful family home and the perfect setting for a family safari holiday. Riding is one of the many activities on offer here, and exploring the bush on horseback is a lovely way to view the fantastic wildlife. Short rides can be arranged for novices and younger jockeys, while longer, more exciting, rides can be arranged for more experienced riders.

On horseback you can get closer to the wildlife, Lewa Wilderness, Lewa, Kenya

On horseback you can get closer to the wildlife, Lewa Wilderness, Kenya

Riding for beginners (over 14 years)

5. Safaris Unlimited, Kenya

Owned by the fantastic riding safari guide Gordie Church, Safaris Unlimited runs fun and exhilarating riding holidays through the incredible wildlife filled plains of the Masai Mara as well as other beautiful areas of Kenya. Since most of the riding holidays here are privately tailored it’s a great choice for families looking for an African riding safari. Gordie guides, the wildlife is astonishing, accommodation is great and the food wonderful. A great pick for the ultimate family riding safari.

Morning ride with an antelope herd, Safaris Unlimited, Kenya

Morning ride with an antelope herd, Safaris Unlimited, Kenya

6. African Horseback Safaris, Botswana

From swimming your horse through the waters of Botswana’s Okavango Delta and eating pizza made in an ant’s hill, to playing giant Jenga at night, there’s never a dull moment on a riding holiday at African Horseback Safaris. In addition to riding you can also explore the area and its wildlife by foot, on a vehicle and by boat.

Guests and guide swimming with their safari horses, African Horseback Safaris, Botswana

Guests and guide swimming with their safari horses, African Horseback Safaris, Botswana

7. Offbeat Riding Safaris, Kenya

Offbeat Riding Safaris offer a wonderfully varied range of safari activities and will put together great trips for those travelling with a mix of riders and non-riders. The riders can experience the exhilaration of riding on wonderful horses through the Masai Mara, one of Africa’s premier wildlife areas, while the non-riders can enjoy the same wildlife exploring on foot or by safari vehicle. A great way to keep everyone happy and experience the holiday of a lifetime.

Offbeat Riding

Riding with giraffe with Offbeat Riding, Kenya

8. Okavango Horse Safaris, Botswana

Riding safaris here move between permanent luxury tented camps and more rustic fly camps so you get to see as much of the vast Okavango Delta as possible. There’s no WiFi or phone reception, so teenagers are forced to relish the local surroundings! Among the many riding highlights are long canters alongside giraffe on the floodplains and swimming the horses through the Delta. When your bottom tires, you can explore by vehicle, on foot, by boat or even drop a line in the hope of catching a fish.

Champagne dinner with Okavango Horse Safari

Enjoying a champagne dinner after a ride with Okavango Horse Safaris

What next?

Our team of specialists has travelled widely throughout Africa and the Indian Ocean and can offer expert advice on planning every type of safari from family and beach holidays to riding and primate safaris. Do get in touch – chatting to people in person, by phone or email is what we do best. We listen, we explain, we answer all sorts of questions even those you didn’t know to ask, and finally we make suggestions. Whether this is your first time to Africa or your twenty first, we have a team standing by to help make the planning easy and the journey the best ever. Please get in touch whatever stage you’re at.

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