Costa Rica’s diverse, beautiful landscape and extraordinary biodiversity can be explored and enjoyed in many ways from cars and ATVs to hiking and rafting. However, there’s something to be said for the authentic nature of a horseback ride along the beaches, mountains, near waterfalls, or up close and personal to the Arenal Volcano!
Explore Costa Rica with a knowledgeable and friendly guide, providing interesting information about the location, landscape and endless wildlife you’re sure to come across.
With so much of Costa Rica to explore, it never hurts to have a little guidance! Here are 14 of our favorite riding destinations; from beginners to adventurers, there’s a destination or tour for everyone.
El Silencio Horseback Riding & La Fortuna Waterfall Hike
Perfect for horse-lovers who want to bask in the beauty of the Arenal Conservation Area, this hour-long tour takes a gradually inclining trail through farmlands – allowing you to take in the gorgeous natural flora. You will then be guided to the Silencio Observation Point where you will have time to view the Arenal Volcano – up close! Once you’ve returned to the stables, your guide will take you on a steep but safe hike to the La Fortuna Waterfall. Though swimming near the waterfall itself is not advised, take a swim in the river to cool off!
Arenal Hanging Bridges Hike & Paco’s Horseback Riding Tour
Costa Rica is focused on letting visitors enjoy the countries natural beauty while protecting it for future generations, this includes the Arenal Hanging Bridges. The private natural ecotourism reserve consists of 250 hectares of tropical rainforest, giving visitors a chance to experience the vast array of wildlife, birds, flora and lush vegetation. Your expert naturalist guide will walk you through the hanging bridges overlooking the canopy.
During the hike, you’ll enjoy 8 fixed bridges and 6 hanging bridges – designed for both beauty and safety. Once you’re done taking in the breathtaking scenery, you’ll enjoy a horseback ride with Paco’s Horses. During your ride, you’ll be guided through the exclusive trails where you can appreciate the dense forests and pastures, where you’ll have the more gorgeous view of the Arenal Volcano and Lake Arenal.
Hacienda Pozo Azul Rafting & Horseback Ride from Peace Lodge
After a wonderfully scenic drive to Hacienda Pozo Azul, you’ll be prepped for your horseback ride along the gleaming Sarapiqui River. Once you’re done horseback riding, get ready for an exciting 2 ½ hour rafting adventure on the Sarapiqui River with rapids between classes I-III.
Seeking bigger thrills? Visit during the rainy season (May through December) to enjoy an even more exciting river with the high water levels and more challenging rapids of the pristine and scenic Sarapiqui River. By now, you’ll have worked up quite an appetite – luckily, you’ll be provided a delightful Costa Rican lunch with a view of the river to match! This tour is available from the Peace Lodge.
Hacienda Pozo Azul Zipline & Horseback Ride from Peace Lodge
This Hacienda Pozo Azul tour combines scenic horseback riding with a 12-zip line canopy adventure. The horseback ride takes you along the Sarapiqui River for an hour, at which point you arrive at the first zip line platform! You’ll zip through the trees and deeper into the dense forest. Once you’re ready to relax, you’ll enjoy an authentic Tico lunch with a gorgeous view of the Sarapiqui River. This tour is available from the Peace Lodge.
El Silencio Horseback Riding in the Cloud Forest
El Silencio Lodge & Spa offers a number of onsite amenities for all, from wine tasting and waterfall hikes to riverside dinners and thrill-seeking adventure tours – the perfect place to sample a bit of everything Costa Rica has to offer.
The best way to enjoy the lush countryside is on horseback, allowing you to truly appreciate the picturesque view of Poas Volcano’s slopes, pastures, and the local Bajos del Toro community. Relaxed and breathtaking, this adventure lets you enjoy both the landscape and the Costa Rican people.
Guanacaste Horseback Riding
The province of Guanacaste is situated on Costa Rica’s northwest shoulder, bordered by Nicaragua in the north and the Nicoya Peninsula in the south. Perfect for beginners, this gentle horseback ride goes at your speed while giving you a long 2 hours to journey through the tropical forest. Take in the beauty and diversity of Guanacaste’s unique dry tropical forest and mountain trails on an easy and fun horseback ride!
Horseback Riding & Cedral Coffee Tour from Hacienda AltaGracia, Southern Mountains
This is an absolute must! High in the mountains, visit one of Costa Rica’s richest communities, Cedral, located at the Talamanca Range. During your ride, you’ll be able to take photographs of the stunning landscape while winding through the trails that cross this charming town.
The ride will bring you to the micro-mill where you will be taken through the golden bean processing procedure – from germination to grain processing. You’ll definitely want to bring home some Costa Rican coffee, so be sure to bring cash! This is a great tour for those who want experience Costa Rica rich tradition and culture. This tour is available from Hacienda AltaGracia, an Auberge Resort.
Bijagual Waterfall Horseback Ride in the Central Pacific
On this lovely tour, you’ll ride up the trail, observing the stunning jungle vegetation and listening for the waterfall – which you will hear long before you see! During the Bijagual Waterfall horseback ride, you’ll be able to explore the area on foot and take a closer look at the exotic flora and fauna – like toucans and macaws. Bring your camera because this tour provides an unbelievable view of the Pacific Ocean and the local fishing villages!
Cerro Nara Mountains Horseback Riding from Arenas del Mar Resort, Manuel Antonio
Found in the ecological reserve, Tocori, the Cerro Nara Mountains found in Manuel Antonio provide culture, lush vegetation, and placid scenes. The gentle horse will take you to swimmable natural, pristine springs and then through the winding trail to the private ranch. The 4.5 hour Cerro Nara horseback ride includes transportation, a knowledgeable and bilingual tour guide, water, fruit, and lunch! This tour is available from Arenas del Mar Beach Resort.
Tocori Mountain Horseback Riding in Manuel Antonio
Family owned and operated, Don Gilberto and his family are ready to show you the best of Costa Rica from atop your horse. During your ride, you’ll be educated on the history and natural surroundings, including the Quepo Natives and nearby Manuel Antonio. Learn about the local wildlife and exotic plants in the surrounding tropical jungle.
After your ride, you will be taken on a guided nature walk, during which you can use all of your senses to take in this authentic slice of Costa Rica. The tour then takes you to the pristine crystalline waters surrounding the Tacori waterfall, where you can cool off before making your way back to the private ranch and treated to a delicious traditional meal.
Cloud Forest Horseback Riding in Monteverde
This 4-hour horseback ride takes you along the rustic countryside roads of Monteverde. Along the ride, you may spot the Arenal Volcano and the Pacific Ocean, which sits outside of the Monteverde Cloud Forest Reserve. You’ll also be able to take in the beautiful countryside and the Nicoya Peninsula.
Once you’ve had a nice feel of rural Costa Rica, the guide will begin pointing out local wildlife – like toucans and monkeys! The long tour gives you a chance to entrench yourself in the farming community and get far away from the tourist areas!
Horseback Riding from Aguila de Osa Ecolodge, Osa Peninsula
The Aguila de Osa Ecolodge horseback ride is an amazing adventure that takes you across sweeping deserted beaches, rainforests and hilltops with awe-inspiring views of the Pacific Ocean. The tour will also take you hidden waterfalls and treasures tucked deep into the surrounding tropical jungle of the Osa Peninsula. This guided half-day tour is great for beginners and experienced riders alike. Spend a few hours exploring everything beautiful Osa has to offer!
Horseback Riding from Lapa Rios Ecolodge, Osa Peninsula
The Lapa Rios Ecolodge is lodge is perfectly situated to grant visitors beautiful views of Golfo Dulce and the lush green rainforest. During your ride, your guide will take you up a hill on horseback to view the landscapes and lead you through farmlands before finally reaching the gorgeous beaches of Lapa Rios. This tour is highly recommended for nature and horse lovers alike!
Horseback Riding on Rio Claro Beach from Copa de Arbol Ecolodge, Osa Peninsula
Copa de Arbol Ecolodge is a beautiful Costa Rican location that offers both soft shores and lush jungle experiences. Horseback riding is a wonderful way to explore the extensive trail that runs along the crystalline beaches and into the jungle itself!
Discover the thundering waterfalls deep in the jungle or bask in the sun on the beach of Rio Claro, a popular freshwater lagoon (a tourist favorite, for its stunning beauty). The guided horseback tour is approximately 4-5 hours and accommodates all levels of riders.