Escape with your Horse
The South Coast of New South Wales is a place where rugged, rocky mountains slope down to serene estuaries, where spring-fed rivers wind their way to the sparkling sea. It’s here amidst all of this natural beauty that some of Australia’s best food and wine is grown and produced.
The Shoalhaven region is the jewel in the South Coast’s crown, encompassing laid-back country towns, more award-winning cellar doors and restaurants than you can poke a stick at, a buzzing arts scene, lush farmland and pristine wilderness. What more could you ask for than to be guided through the innumerable wonders of this unique region astride your own steed?
Eqwine Escapes resides on a 70 acre horse property aptly named Champagne Hill. Champagne Hill is located in Budgong on the South Coast of NSW. 20 mins from Nowra & Kangaroo Valley or 25 mins from Berry. Please click here for the map to determine the duration of the trip from your property.
We welcome four guests and their horses per departure date for this three day, two night escape. Everything is included, and we mean everything (apart from your horse's feed for obvious reasons).
From swimming with your horse in the beautiful Shoalhaven River to indulging in a two-course dinner with paired wines at an award winning restaurant, we’ve crafted this itinerary to squeeze every drop of goodness out of the Shoalhaven. Your hosts will leave no stone unturned in their quest to show you exactly why they believe the Shoalhaven truly is heaven on earth. By the time you fall into bed in your private room at Champagne Hill of an evening, your senses will be overwhelmed by the sights, tastes, sounds and sensations of this remarkable place.
So if spending the weekend with your steed, gourmet cuisine, escaping to a picture-perfect river, native bushland and more than a few drops of wine is your idea of paradise, then the Shoalhaven awaits!
Pace: The pace can vary from a walk right through to a canter when the terrain allows, it's up to you and what you feel comfortable
Terrain: Most of the trails are easy & flat with minor rocky sections. We will also travel on some very quiet gravel roads with the occasional motorbike, however the riders are courteous and always slow down and will turn their motors off if need be. For your reference, I pop boots on front hooves on some of my more sensitive horses. The ride to the Shoalhaven River has three steep inclines however they are wide enough to easily zig zag down if you wish.
Seasons: Spring & Autumn (The best times of the year to ride in The Shoalhaven!)
Group size: We welcome 4 guests and their horses per departure date.
Time in Saddle: Day 1: 2 hours, Day 2: 3 hours, Day 3: 5 hours.
Accommodation: You’ll be staying at a farmhouse set within a lush garden overlooking the stunning Shoalhaven region. The farmhouse has a modern French feel, evoking warmth and comfort with a dash of luxe. You’ll have your own bedroom with a queen bed, and a bathroom shared with one other guest. There is unlimited access to the farmhouse, kitchen, pool and tennis court. On cool nights, an open fire is lit so you can cosy up with a glass of wine and a book. Unlimited WiFi is also available and you’ll be provided with linen, towels, body wash, shampoo and conditioner.
Horse Accommodation: Champagne Hill offers private secure paddocks or stables for your steed which includes water and wellness check. All fences are plain wire and electric tape. Paddocks are separate from the Champagne Hill horses.
Ride Length: It's a 3 day, 2 night itinerary over specific weekends.
Price: $990 per rider & horse
Inclusions: The price includes all meals including a 2 course restaurant meal, wine & beer, own room accommodation for 2 nights, 3 guided rides and private paddock or stable for your horse with water.
Exclusions: The price does not include transporting your horse to Champagne Hill or horse insurance.
Book a Saddle Seat: To secure your saddle seat we require a 50% deposit and the balance to be paid 8 weeks before departure date. We accept Credit/Debit card, PayPal or direct debit. Click here to Book your Saddle Seat.
*Please note, this is a suggested itinerary only and subject to change at the discretion of your guides due to weather and other influencing factors.
Yippee, the moment has finally come – you’re off to the glorious Shoalhaven for three days with your horse for what can only be described as total bliss! This morning you will need to get yourself and your horse to Champagne Hill by 11am. You’ll have a meet and greet with your ride host and guide Tiffany Gale, over a wine and sumptuous country style lunch.
After lunch you’ll change into your riding gear and tack up your mount. You’ll then head out for a scenic trail ride in Champagne Hill’s conservation area, where you’ll wander amongst ferns and gaze up at the canopy of red bloodwood & Sydney peppermint gums whilst enjoying the views towards Kangaroo Valley and Burrier regions.
After this first glimpse at the Shoalhaven’s postcard-worthy scenery, you will retire with a glass of Prosecco and a cheese board just in time to soak up the sunset (Autumn) and the gorgeous views over Morton National Park before sitting down to dinner at Champagne Hill. If it’s a balmy evening, you’ll be treated to a wildlife/stargazing walk on which you just might spot a rock wallaby, wombat or eastern grey kangaroo.
Today you’ll trit-trot through Bugong National Park, winding through quintessential Australian bush in the aptly named Shoalhaven Sandstone Forest. If you’re lucky, hidden amongst the banksias, grass trees, turpentines and hard-leaved scribbly gums, you may spot an echidna, yellow bellied glider, yellow tailed black cockatoo or a goanna. The park’s unspoilt nature, combined with the nearby escarpment and Shoalhaven River, creates a strong sense of peace and solitude.
After a canter along the open tracks (if you wish), you’ll arrive at a breathtaking cliff edge overlooking the Shoalhaven Gorge – a view you won’t forget in a hurry! You’ll then trot on along bush-fringed tracks, with the opportunity to pop over a log or two if you wish. Finally, arriving at the awe-inspiring Coolendel Lookout, you’ll be met with a high tea with Prosecco scones, served upon rock formations overlooking the Shoalhaven River, Morton National Park and into the Ettrema wilderness. Once everyone’s bellies and eyes are satisfied, you’ll mount up and meander back through the park before breezing through the vineyards of Lyrebird Organic Winery for a wine tasting of Chambourcin (red) and fortified wines (port).
You’ll then unwind with a glass of your choice accompanied by local cheeses and condiments in front of the pot belly fire (if it's cole enough). You'll head back to Champagne Hill to tuck your horse in for the night then it's off to dinner at the award-winning Silo’s Estate – a delicious farm-to-plate, two-course meal accompanied by the infamous Silo’s Estate ‘Duck’s Nuts’ Shiraz or ‘Cat’s Meow’ Rose'. Then it’s back to Champagne Hill for a well-earned rest.
If you can fit in another bite, a beautiful breakfast is provided at Champagne Hill. You’ll then tack up your horse and your guides will lead you out through the bush of Illaroo Farm . You’ll then scamper down alongside a mountain of amazing rock formations, with opportunities to trot and canter along the way, before reaching the Shoalhaven River for a picnic lunch and swim with your horse! After a siesta, you’ll gather all your pluck to steer your horse back up the mountain and return to Champagne Hill by 3pm.
Friday18th September 2020 to Sunday 20th September 2020
Friday 27th November 2020 to Sunday 29th November 2020
(2 spots left)
Friday 19th March 2021 to Sunday 21st March 2021
(4 spots left)
Saturday 12th June 2021 to Monday 14th June 2021