Mozambique

Cahora & Tete

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Horseback heaven on Safari

Horseback heaven on Safari

Pat Retzlaff galloping along the Vilanculos beaches
Pat Retzlaff galloping along the Vilanculos beaches
Mozambique Horse Safaris

BY : JULIA JACKSON

www.mozambiquehorsesafari.com

Mozambique: an exotic country with 2,470km of coastline, varying from wild and rural to exquisitely developed. This variety, between first and third world, makes it one of the most unique and well-rounded holiday destinations on offer today.

There are countless ways to view the coastline - from canoeing in the dense and mysterious mangroves and coastal fresh water springs, snorkeling on pristine reefs with a professional guide leading the way, to dhow safaris with local villagers and fishermen sharing their knowledge of what life on the Mozambican shoreline is really like.

You can see it from the air as you fly in - a kaleidoscope of ocean hues, or perhaps you are a little more adventurous and would like to see it from horseback with an organisation like Mozambique Horse Safari, which provides the perfect combo of adventure and leisure.

Mozambique Horse Safari was set up by Pat and Mandy Retzlaff as a result of their epic migration with one hundred horses, from struggling Zimbabwe to the greener pastures of Mozambique, eventually ending up in the small seaside town of  Vilanculos. It was no mean feat and they overcame countless challenges which are chronicled by Mandy in her memoir, One Hundred and Four Horses.

There are now just thirty horses of varying breeds: thoroughbreds, Arabs and the South African Boerperds. The horses are fit, well cared for and well-schooled, offering a great way to explore Mozambique.

A variety of different types of safari are available, from catching a boat to Benguerra island to ride the Houdinis and escape artists that kept running away on the mainland, to rides through fishing villages and along the coastline itself. 

A working holiday and volunteer programme is another option aimed at gap year students and adult volunteers who are looking to develop their riding skills, discover the culture of Mozambique and make a difference in Africa. The minimum time period for volunteers is two weeks, enabling benefits for both the participant and the project.

The Reztlaffs are guides, hosts and passionate horse lovers, a combination which brings many of their guests back for more.