Horseback Riding in Portugal

Monte Velho

Overview

The Monte Velho Equo Resort is a boutique hotel located on a Lusitano breeding farm and is an ideal base from which to experience wonderful trail riding and world class dressage instruction. The owner is an architect and his wife an interior designer, so the buildings are carefully and exquisitely designed. The property blends with the surrounding countryside which one can explore by horseback, and the rooftop pool offers amazing panoramic views of the Alentejo region.

The resort can provide riding according to your interest and level of experience, including both dressage lessons and trail rides. The stud farm has been dedicated to breeding Lusitano horses for the sport of dressage since 1994. Their horses have wonderful gaits and characters and have been very successful in competition, and the lesson horses can provide the thrill of such movements of passage, piaffe, flying changes and pirouettes under the careful tutelage of talented professional instructors.

In addition to lessons, Monte Velho has unique conditions for trail riding, taking advantage not only of their 620 acre property, but also all the surroundings which have been classified as a National Ecological Reserve. In fact you can ride through this absolutely stunning area for several hours without ever crossing paved roads. Instead you ride through various dams and experience a typical Alentejo landscape, with its cork and holm trees, the herds of cattle, in a totally natural environment.

For activities beyond riding, Monte Velho can organize themed meals, outdoor picnics and canoeing in the dam. The city of Évora, considered World Heritage by UNESCO, is only about 20 miles from the Monte Velho Equo Resort.

Guests may choose between standard and premium rooms depending on availability. Each room opens to a furnished balcony with an amazing view to the dam and the typical landscape of Alentejo. There is a pool, jacuzzi, sauna, and options to purchase massages.

  • Overview:
    All horses used are purebred Lusitanos. Many have been bred at the farm which hosts you, and range from having at basic dressage training to very advanced training. English saddles and snaffle bits are used.
  • Horse Breeds:
    Lusitano
  • Trip Pace:
    Depending on ability and desire
  • Tack:
    English tack, dressage in lessons, is used. Some traditional Portuguese tack also available for trail rides.
  • Weight limit:
    210 lbs
  • Hours of Instruction:
    Lessons are one hour each.
  • Instruction and Training:
    Choose from two lessons daily, one lesson daily, one lesson and one trail ride (1.5 hr) daily, or two trail rides daily. Lessons have a maximum of two students and trail rides have a maximum of 5. Coralie Baldrey has been offering exceptional dressage training to riders of all levels for the past ten years. Many people return to Monte Velho each year to continue their training with her as they find that her easy style of teaching and her exceptionally well trained horses allow them to make large strides in their development upon their return home. A graduate of the famed Cadre Noir in Saumur, France, Coralie has a talent for working collaboratively with both horse and rider to help bring out the innate talent of each. She and her colleague Joao Torrao specialize in reaching riders at any level and helping them advance their riding by better communication with their horses. The horses are pure bred Lusitanos and they are trained through Grand Prix level. As a breeding operation, Monte Velho has several internationally recognized competitive dressage horses and recently, were honored with the chance to cover some Andalusions, bringing the breed even more depth and talent. Coralie is newly joined by Lorena Souza, a graduate of Equine Sciences at the Elvas School of Agriculture (ESAE) with first-class honors, Brazilian born Lorena is a certified Dressage Instructor who has a passion for teaching. With 4 years of experience in Dressage training at the Centro Hipico Pedras Salgadas, her enthusiasm, energy and attitude have inspired hundreds of students. You may also see Coralie's sister also teaching some lessons, as well as Monte Velho owner Diogo Lima Mayer.
  • Types of Instruction:
    Clinics and Lessons, Dressage Training

The Monte Velho property offers additional activities for those who are non-riders. Walks/hikes around the area are endless, or you could use one of the 6 available bikes to explore the territory. The dam also offers or canoeing, all at no extra charge. There is a gym on site, and massages available to book at cost. Tours/sightseeing of nearby towns can also be arranged, at an additional cost.

At the farm, or from Lisbon airport for an additional fee.

Trip Itinerary

Day 1

3 nights / 4 days / 3 days riding

Dressage program
three 1 hr lessons
Intensive Dressage five 1 hr lessons
Mixed program
three 1 hr lessons and three 1.5 hr trail rides
Trail program
three 1.5 hr trail rides
Intensive Trail
five 1.5 hr trail rides

6 nights / 8 days / 7 days riding

Dressage program five 1 hr lessons
Intensive Dressage nine 1 hr lessons and one 1.5 hr trail ride
Mixed program
five 1 hr lessons and five 1.5 hr trail rides
Trail trail
five 1.5 hr trail rides
Intensive Trail
ten 1.5 hr trail rides

Trip Map

Trip Dates & Pricing

Flexible start and end dates for stays of either 6 or 3 nights. 2020: High Season is March 31-July 13, September 1-November 2, December 22-31. Medium Season is March 3-30, July 14-August 31, November 3-30. Low Season is January 1-March 2, December 1-December 22. 2021: High Season is March 28-July 3, August 29-October 30, December 19-31. Medium Season is February 28-March 27, July 4-August 28, October 31-November 7. Low Season is January 1-February 27, November 28-December 22.

Pricing & Options

  • Base Price
  • $1,8156 nights in a shared premium room on dressage & trail program during high season
  • Pricing Variation
  • 7 days/6 nights/5 days riding
    High Season Dressage Intensive Dressage Dressage and trail Trail Intensive Trail Non-rider
    Single Premium room $2,000 $2,450 $2,240 $1,735 $1,970
    Shared Premium room $1,575 $2,025 $1,815 $1,310 $1,545 $1,075
    Medium Season
    Single Premium room $1,640 $1,985 $1,820 $1,435 $1,610
    Shared Premium room $1,360 $1,700 $1,535 $1,150 $1,330 $975
    Low Season
    Single Premium room $1,395 $1,735 $1,570 $1,185 $1,365
    Shared Premium room $1,215 $1,560 $1,345 $1,010 $1,185 $835

Pricing & Options

  • Base Price
  • $1,8156 nights in a shared premium room on dressage & trail program during high season
  • Pricing Variation
  • 7 days/6 nights/5 days riding
    High Season Dressage Intensive Dressage Dressage and trail Trail Intensive Trail Non-rider
    Single Premium room $2,000 $2,450 $2,240 $1,735 $1,970
    Shared Premium room $1,575 $2,025 $1,815 $1,310 $1,545 $1,075
    Medium Season
    Single Premium room $1,640 $1,985 $1,820 $1,435 $1,610
    Shared Premium room $1,360 $1,700 $1,535 $1,150 $1,330 $975
    Low Season
    Single Premium room $1,395 $1,735 $1,570 $1,185 $1,365
    Shared Premium room $1,215 $1,560 $1,345 $1,010 $1,185 $835

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Contact Megan Barrett

I had a great time with our hosts in Portugal in September. The horses were in beautiful condition and so solid in a range of challenging conditions.  Our host and his team went the extra mile to make us feel at home and they handled the details so everything went smoothly and our safety was protected.  Our guide and ground crew rode or drove the trails the night before so they were sure the path was passable, they coordinated with a team stop traffic when we had large roads with fast traffic to cross and they were mindful of our comfort throughout.  Professional from start to end. I will remember the great warmth from our host and guides, as well as the Lusitanos, and the beauty and generosity of Portugal and her country people that few tourists are likely to experience.   We found it everywhere. Thank you to the entire Equitours team for a horse vacation I’ll never forget. And now that I’ve done a point-to-point ride like this I wonder if there is really any other way to see another country and know its people!   Can’t wait for the next trip.

Ritchie, 2015