Horseback riding lets you experience the nature of Okinawa in a unique way. Most people don’t realize that it’s an activity you can enjoy even if it’s your first time on a horse. In Okinawa, there are horse riding clubs where you can try horseback riding in the north and south of the island. The view of Okinawa that you can see from a slightly higher perspective than usual on the back of a large horse is exceptional.
Depending on the club, courses are also available in which you can ride a horse into the deep blue waters of the ocean. At the Okinawa Horse Riding Club, you can soak yourself and your horse in the seawater during the warm season. While a lot of people have the experience of swimming at a beach in Okinawa, most people have never experienced entering the water atop a horse.
“Even first-timers, with a little practice in the park, can ride a horse alone,” Mr. Mihara, our guide, told us. It might be hard to imagine yourself controlling a big horse on your own, but people learn to ride alone the first time they try horseback riding.
What is important is communication with the horse. An over 500 kg horse may intimidate you at first. But fear the first time you meet is exactly what your horse feels, too. As you think about where you want to go and communicate what you want to do from the saddle, ride your horse while considering what your horse is thinking as well. . As you walk together through the beautiful nature of Okinawa, your comfort with each other increases and you can sense a back-and-forth communication of feelings with the horse from your body through its back. Once you experience this oneness, you can understand why we have repeat riders who visit even alone just to ride horses time and again.
Special equipment is not necessary and you can come empty-handed to ride. Come in T-shirt and shorts or any clothing that allows you to move. To ensure footwear doesn’t slip off in the middle of your ride, we advise you to wear sneakers or anything other than sandals.
There may be some rule differences at each club, but in general, anyone that is 130 cm or taller without any riding experience may ride alone outside the Horse Riding Club. Small children and people who are uncomfortable with horseback riding may select a course in which the staff will hold the reins of the horse as they ride.
If you are fond of animals, you will surely be mesmerized by the big eyes of the horses and attracted by their honest nature. If you are going to Okinawa, why not try a completely new experience?
Okinawa Horse Riding Club
Address: 1020-1 Takashiho, Yomitan Village, Nakagami County, Okinawa Prefecture
Open Hours: 9:30 – 12:00, 13:30 – 17:30 (last entry 17:00)
Fixed Holidays: Wednesdays
Price: Sea Horse Course 14,580 yen (45 minutes. Available in summer only)
A riding club approximately 1 hour from Naha, where guests can leave the bustle of the tourist area and enjoy the beautiful nature of the Okinawa. In addition to the Sea Horse Course, you can also select a walking course through a field where there is a festival hall that was the location for a long-running historical drama series, a walking course through grasslands that overlook the ocean, and a wide variety of other courses.