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Africa’s got it all – tropical paradises, deserted beaches, and windswept desert coastlines. Add horses and you have the perfect equestrian escape!

Swimming with horses is a bucket list item for almost every equestrian. For anyone that loves horses, a picture of white a sandy beach does not only conjure up images of sunbathing and cocktails. Your first thought is likely of exhilarating canters across the untouched sand! And nothing beats swimming on horseback, the feeling of weightlessness is indescribable.

Beach riding holidays in Africa are not just for the romantics; they’re for families seeking a quiet retreat and intrepid solo travelers craving adventure. Renowned for its jaw-dropping wildlife, don’t forget Africa’s hidden gems of unspoiled beaches. Imagine the allure of white sand and azure waters in Mozambique and Zanzibar, miles of untouched beauty in South Africa, or waves crashing on golden sands in Morocco. And of course, swimming on horseback in Egypt’s Red Sea.

Whether you’re cantering across the white sand or swimming on horseback in the azure waters, a beach riding holiday in Africa is the stuff dreams are made of. Imagine the sensation of cantering through soft sands, the salty breeze in your hair, before slipping off the saddles and riding into the crystal clear waters. And after a full day in the saddle, watching the golden waves under the afternoon sun? It’s like stepping into a dream – you might need a pinch just to be sure it’s real.

Here Are Some of Our Favorite Beaches to Swim With Horses in Africa

Horse Riding in Zanzibar, Tanzania

Just off the Tanzanian coast, you’ll find the perfect add on to your East African horseback safari, the incredible island of Zanzibar. All the beach rides are dependent on the tides. Low tide is perfect for long morning gallops through the shallow waters between the sandbanks or cantering along the long empty beaches before heading inland and exploring Nungwi Village. And, of course, high tide is the perfect time to slip off the saddles and head into the deeper water for a swim. It’s a great destination for all riding levels, even beginners can experience the magic of swimming on horseback. Plus you’ll be staying at the Z Hotel which offers a wonderful luxury beach escape for riders and non-riders alike.

Horse riding in Zanzibar offers wonderful canters along deserted sandbanks, long rides along the white beaches and swimming on horseback

Swim on Horseback in the Red Sea, Egypt

Pyramids, sphinx, pharaohs and endless deserts are usually top of mind when you think of Egypt. But did you know that Egypt also boasts the white sandy beaches and pristine waters of the Rea Sea? Gallop incredible Arabian horses through the desert sands, past the gently waving palm trees and straight to the shores of the sea. Feel your horses’ powerful muscles below you as they swim, splash and play in the crystal clear water. Makadi Bay in Hurghada, is nestled between the golden desert landscape and picturesque mountain range, located directly on the turquoise blue waters of the Red Sea. The perfect setting for a once-in-a-lifetime swim.

Many of our horse riding holidays in Egypt end in Hurghada where you have the chance to swim on horseback in the Red Sea

Beach Escape at Kinondo Kwetu, Kenya

One of Kenya’s best kept secrets, Kinondo Kwetu is top on our list of the most stunning places to swim with horses in Africa. Located on the far end of Gula beach, the stables are home to boerperd horses, a local South African breed, savvy to the beaches and strong swimmers. Rise early or wait until sundown when the temperature is perfect for a ride and a dip, the sea is calm and clear, and the African sun shines golden on the sands and twinkles in the waves. Breathe in the fresh, salty air as you and your horse explore the immaculate coastline before slipping of the saddle and gliding through the clear, warm waters. A truly unforgettable experience!

Kinondo Kwetu is a small boutique hotel on a beautiful stretch of beach offering short beach rides and swimming on horseback

Horse Riding in Vilanculos and Benguerra Island, Mozambique

Visiting the famous beaches of Mozambique is the ideal beach getaway for a romantic beach getaway or solo adventure. Escape the hustle and bustle of city life and enjoy the rich cultural heritage, fresh seafood and of course, the tranquility of riding, and swimming on horseback, along the Indian Ocean. This exotic, palm tree-lined coastline is truly a picture-perfect paradise. Feel the warmth of the sun on your face and the breeze dancing through your hair as you and your horse gallop the endless, untouched stretch of sand. Slip your saddle off, edge into the warm waters and let your horse guide you, weightlessly through the turquoise waves.

Mozambique is known for pristine beaches and crystal clear water – perfect for long beach rides and swimming on horseback

Horse Riding at Pearly Beach, South Africa

For those visiting Cape Town and looking to travel further along the Garden Route, you’ll find the perfect horse riding adventure just a few hours away. A sleepy beach town, well known for it’s wide and vast, pearly white coastline and bright blue waters, Pearly Beach boasts some incredible beaches to explore on horseback. Enjoy a relaxing ride through the fnybos where you’ll see a variety of birds and small creatures before reaching the sand dunes, and then onto the beach. The long, flat stretch of packed sand is perfect for an exhilarating gallop before cooling down with a dip in the ocean. Wade right in and experience the ethereal moment as your horse pushes off the ocean floor and into the gentle swell.

A day trip to Pearly Beach offers a great chance to tick swimming on horseback from your bucket list (Photos Pearly Beach Horse Trails)

WILD CARD: Beach Riding Adventure Along the Wild Coast, South Africa

Rolling hills, deep gorges, and cliff tops that plunge into the ocean ensure that this is not your average beach ride; it is an epic adventure on the edge of Africa! The Wild Coast is one of South Africa’s most remote stretches of shoreline. Here you’ll ride over rocky headlands, through rolling hills of the former homeland of the Transkei, and along vast tracts of empty golden beaches. The rivers on the trails here often flood in the changing tides and so getting your feet wet is inevitable. Your fearless horses will take you confidently across these flowing rivers. It’s all about the adventure, and you’ll have a backup team on canoes or vehicles to make sure that you’re always safe. Hang on tight and enjoy the ride.

Riding along the Wild Coast is just that – wild! It’s not just a beach ride, it’s an adventure on the edge of Africa

Swimming on horsback is an experience we’d love to help you tick off your bucket list! If you’re looking for the ultimate beach riding holiday in Africa check out our collection here.

Ready to tick swimming on horseback from your bucket list? Get in touch with us if you’re looking to go on a horse riding holiday or chat to one of our horse safari experts.