Riding holidays around Lake Saimaa and the rest of Finland are becoming increasingly popular. Riding on horseback through the Finnish countryside surrounded by its serene natural beauty is an unforgettable experience that changes according to each season of the year.
Stables and riding schools in Finland organise horse riding courses, trips through the countryside and supervised walks of varying lengths for everyone, be they complete beginners or experienced riders, adult or child. For those wanting a starting taste of horseback riding in Finland and Saimaa, particularly children, pony rides led by leash are also widely available.
For those who want to experience the stunning Finnish forests along the shores of Saimaa’s lakes, there are plenty of routes to be found in the network of bridleways which allow safe, easy and enjoyable riding for you and the horse.
Various companies offer guided trips while others will offer you information about where you can ride so that you can explore at your own pace. You’ll find plenty of rest stops with their own lean-to shelters and fireplaces where you can take a break and grill a sausage by the lake’s shoreline.
Make a trip to a local stable and they’ll help you get started. In the heat of summer, you might find horses taking a cooling swim in the lakes, lounging in the shade or playing in the sun.
Did you know that Finland has its own breed of horse? The Finnhorse is the only breed of horse developed purely in Finland and since 2007 has been the country’s national horse.
Also known as the Finnish Universal, the Finnhorse is a versatile, all-round breed considered to fulfil all of Finland’s horse needs, suitable not only for riding but also for harness racing and as a workhorse in agriculture, forestry and recreation. Following mechanisation in the 1950s, their numbers plummeted to only 14,100 by 1987 but have since made a comeback.
Many equestrian facilities specialise in Finnhorses and offer riding tours; this good-natured horse is perfectly suited to beginners.
Come and try the unique experience of riding in Finland and Lake Saimaa!