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Best Places For Horseback Riding In The DC Area

June 1, 2013 8:00 AM

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Photo Credit: Thinkstock

Photo Credit: Thinkstock

Want to get away? Horseback riding is a nice and easy way to relieve stress from the daily grind as well as enjoy the beauty of Mother Nature. Check out this list of best places for horseback riding near DC and feel the tension ease away.

Rock Creek Park Horse Center
5100 Glover Road
Washington, DC 20015
(202) 362-0117
www.rockcreekhorsecenter.com

Tucked away from the hustle and bustle of downtown DC, the Rock Creek Park Horse Center offers a variety of services for all levels of horseback riders including group and private riding lessons, summer camps, pony rides and volunteer programs. For a more relaxed experience, the Rock Creek Park Horse Center also offers a one-hour guided horseback riding tour through the woods. Prior horseback-riding experience is not necessary. Each horseback-riding tour is limited to four people, set at a walking pace and led by an experienced trail guide. Reservations are required and helmets are provided. The center also offers full-service, box-style boarding services as well.

River Chase Farm
40332 Courtland Farm Lane
Aldie, VA 20105
(703) 777-1899
www.riverchasefarm.net

Forget dinner and a movie. Sign up for the Wine and Cheese Ride at the River Chase Farm and you and your sweetie will enjoy date night unlike anything you’ve experienced before. The evening kicks off promptly at 6:30 p.m. at the stables where everyone will tack up and take off on a 1.5-hour horseback-riding adventure. Then, everyone will return to the farm at around 8 p.m. for a delicious selection of wine and cheese, stimulating conversation and fun. River Chase Farm is known as one of the premier hunter jumper farms in northern Virginia. The facility features two historic barns, cross country fields and jumps and miles of groomed trails. It offers horseback-riding lessons, boarding facilities and horse show training.

Related: Best Bike Rides In The DC Area

Wheaton Park Stables
1101 Glenallen Ave.
Wheaton, MD 20902
(301) 622-2424
www.wheatonparkstables.com

For a fun way to spend a Sunday afternoon, stop by the Wheaton Park Stables where you will take off on a one-hour guided horseback ride through the beautiful Wheaton Regional Park. Located just outside DC, the facility features group and private riding lessons, summer camps and boarding. Pair up with a friend or spouse or book a reservation for up to six people. No horseback riding experience is necessary. Reservations are required and a deposit is necessary for groups of three or more. Be sure to call ahead of time as trail rides tend to book quickly. Wheaton Park Stables also offers pony rides on Tuesdays and Sundays for children ages three and older. Helmets are provided for each activity.

Fort Valley Ranch
299 S. Fort Valley Road
Fort Valley, VA 22652
(540) 933-6633
www.fortvalleystable.com

Spend the day trotting to the highest peak of the George Washington National Forest courtesy of the Fort Valley Ranch guided horseback riding program. The day kicks off at 9:30 a.m. and includes a delicious lunch halfway through the journey. See gorgeous sweeping views of trees, streams and the Shenandoah Valley. The Fort Valley Ranch also offers wagon and private rides as well as campgrounds, boarding services and overnight accommodations at the ranch. Reservations are required up to 48 hours in advance.

Related: Best Pet-Friendly Getaways Near Washington DC

River Bottom Trail Riders
9020 Holsey Road
Damascus, MD 20872
(301) 253-0999
www.horserentals.com

Book a horseback-riding tour with the River Bottom Trail Riders and you will go over the mountain and through the woods plus trot through other majestic scenery. Each tour takes its riders through the gorgeous Patuxent River State Park and features a wide variety of trails to help keep boredom at bay. Enjoy a break and a light lunch as you make your way through the park at no additional cost. These guided tours are meant for intermediate and/or experienced horseback riders. The River Bottom Trail Riders also offers riding lessons, overnight camping, trailer parking and boarding services. It also makes for a great place to host your child’s next birthday bash.

Susan Diranian is a freelance writer living in Ashburn, VA. She is covering Travel & Outdoors. Her work can be found at Examiner.com.

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