Are there any places in and around Taipei to go Horseback riding?
There’s one in Taichung near Tunghai University hidden away in the back of the Bieshu. Just in case that helps
I remember hearing about a place in Danshui, and I also remember driving by a horse-back riding “ranch” in Yangmingshan. No addresses, sorry…
i’ve seen one in yangminshan when hiking up the trail from tienmu to the cultural university, must be off sha mao shan lu somewhere…
Regarding the place in Taichung (Near the Tunghai Beishu)… Some Taiwanese friends mentioned that the owner(s)? will often let Westeners work there - taking care of the horses, cleaning the stables, etc. And in return, they can ride for free.
Apparently there is a riding school near the Kuantu (Guandu) temple in Peitou District, but I can’t find the details.
Hannover Equestrian Club, Taibei
Further away: Tsomalai (Zoumalai) Farm 走馬瀨農場, 61, Qiliwa, Erxi Cun (village), Danei Xiang (township), Tainan County 742 台南縣大內鄉二溪村唭哩瓦61號 Tel: 06-576-0121
The only place I’ve ridden a horse in Taiwan is the Taiwan Folk Village in Zhanghua County, where I was bullied into being the groom at a mock Chinese wedding, just like the bloke in the photo:
The main place in Taipei is the Hannover Equestrian Club at Chengde Rd section 7, #143-1. Having the address is almost useless 'coz it takes some finding. You have to go up Chengde from the city, past the place where it meets Wenlin Rd – the road that goes to Shihlin – and head north to the second set of traffic lights then do a U-turn and there is a lane on your right marked with a sign with a horse and rider on it. The name is in Chinese only. Follow the lane and the riding place is about 300 meters on your left.
Membership costs around NT$50-60,000 a year (NT$40,000/year if you take out a three-year membership) and riding lessons cost NT$800/hour. They used to let people have unsupervised riding for NT$400/hour but they tell me they don’t do this anymore because too many shit-for-brains say “I can ride,” get on the horse, and then injure it in some way. So basically, unless they know you and what you can do really well, you will have to pay for the instructor even if you don’t need the tuition. They also have deals for non-members to pay by the hour but it is a hefty NT$2,500/hour or thereabouts.
You can pay NT$1,000/hour extra if you want a really good horse. If you are a pretty advanced rider, it’s worth the extra money to have a horse you can still learn stuff with. There is a roofed-over indoor arena, an outside arena with a retractable roof and an outside – roofless, so in summer it is hardly used – jumping area. They do have gymkanas and things there; it is the real thing, not a half-arsed Taiwanese imitation. In the year or so I have been going there they have been pretty steadily upgrading the facilities and pretty constantly buying new horses. There’s also a restaurant and bar. The whole facility is open 8am-10pm except Mondays. They will ship a horse out to Pali – opposite Tamsui – for you and you can go riding on the beach for a morning if you want. Costs NT$6,000 for the horse and its transportation. They also do the same as a group activity sometimes, with half a dozen horses and riders which makes it cheaper, NT$2,000 for an afternoon. The horses go wild at the beach with all that space, so if you are less than competent at least at the canter don’t even think about it. If you are, it’s the most fun you can have in Taiwan with your clothes on.
The tack is English-style, as is the style of riding the instructors teach. They will lend you half-chaps, gloves and a hat if you go there for a trial. Obviously, they don’t expect anyone to join without some kind of tryout first. If you join they will expect you to buy the stuff unless you already have it. They will not lend boots for obvious reasons but the coach might lend you spurs if you need them. They sell all this stuff too, by the way, though its cheaper to buy it on your next trip home. At least two of the coaches there speak decent enough English for the purpose at hand, and another speaks good Japanese.
Thanks so much for all the help! I am not really looking for a long-term commitment, mostly a two/three hour ride with or without a guide for my girlfriend and I. Any suggestions?
If its English style, shouldn’t it be called horse riding or even just riding? What is it with this horse"back" riding thing? What other kind is there? I know I used to do a fair bit of horsebelly riding, but that was when I’d just started and didn’t know the nags would sometimes blow out their stomachs before you tightened the saddle cinch.
And chaps? Well really! That simply isn’t cricket. The type of riding done by people who wear chaps in Britain does not usually involve horses.
I went riding once in Kenting many years ago and it was a lot of fun – the rides were all well looked after and after “proving ourselves competent” to the instructor we were allowed to go away by ourselves near that mountain thingy (close to where they hold Spring Scream). Can’t remember the cost, but “an arm and a leg” comes to mind.
Sigh!!! I could have afforded that.
Oh yeah! that’s right near my place. it’s very close to the incinerator stack so let that be your guide
Perhaps I may contribute as I’ve recently fallen in love with riding horses myself, since coming to Taiwan. I live in NanKan, East of Taipei.
There’s a club near Jhongli, where I had my first lesson. They pushed me to do more and more. I’ll admit, it was fun but I was sore as hell and my Taiwanese friend couldn’t really keep up… we both had a good time, but ya know, it was very difficult for a first lesson. The instructor didn’t speak a lot of English, but I know a little Chinese and I’m used to more hands on adjustments from years of studying Chinese Qi Kung, anyways. There was also a pro instructor there with some star student about to be in a competition, and he told me I was doing great but steer softer and give the horse more power, LOL. I think it wasn’t bad instruction though, and I felt good about getting the rhythm of the big old mare I was riding.
There’s a club at GueiShan I tried this morning and I preferred the instructor and the horse. A lot less bony, and you know, I don’t know much about them yet but he seemed relaxed and happier and friendlier (judging from the way the other horse’s neck was tense and eyes were bulging when I first met her)… just got a nice warm feeling off him (the horse, not the instructor). In addition, they have a teacher there named Casey I would recommend wholeheartedly as she speaks good English. She also was a riding instructor in Australia for the last couple of years. Basically, I felt really good about the entire experience and the way she taught. I was able to focus entirely on structure, balance, and relax – my horseriding lesson was thus less like Muai Thai and more like Qi Kung (Or BaGuaZhang – since we were walking in circles).
And the price was half what the place in Jhongli cost me as well (750NTD versus 1650NTD)…
So go see 'em and help me keep the place in business!
I cannot remember the contact info for the place near Jhongli, sorry.