Mozambique Working Holiday

2 Weeks: From £1 300

pp
sharing

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IMMERSE YOURSELF IN THE LIFESTYLE AND ENERGY OF MOZAMBIQUE WHILE WORKING WITH EXCEPTIONAL HORSES

This equestrian working holiday promises an unforgettable experience; fantastic riding, natural horsemanship and unique culture set to the backdrop of white, tropical beaches.

Need a break from your usual routine? How about spending your days in a tropical paradise working with and riding horses day after day? This working holiday in Mozambique is ideal for gap year students or adult volunteers (min 19 years old) looking to spend a number of weeks (or months!) developing their riding and horsemanship skills while experiencing the unique culture of this beautiful tropical African beach town.

There are never more than 5 volunteers, making it a small, intimate programme. The stables is family-run, and volunteers quickly become part of it, many returning regularly to visit the family and the horses they fell in love with. There are about 40 horses, all schooled to a very high level and react easily and lightly to the aids. Their care and well-being take precedence ensuring that they are responsive, alert, tough and fit. While you will do plenty of riding every day you will also interact with the trail clients, so it is important that you have an outgoing personality, a positive attitude, and enjoy working with people as well as horses. Trail rides vary from day rides to week-long trips, including beach rides, horseback swims and adventures into the inland dunes and wetlands. Volunteers will ensure the guests have the best possible experience on the trails and will often work as back-up guides on these trails.

You will be based in Vilankulo; the coastal area is famous for its unspoiled sandy beaches, warm weather and remarkable sea life. You will also have plenty of time to enjoy the beaches, go snorkelling in the warm blue waters, or try your hand at kite surfing!

QUICK FACTS
Vilankulo, Mozambique
Vilankulo International Airport
Open All Year
From 2 weeks
Group Size: Max. 5
Intermediate and Above
TOUR HIGHLIGHTS
  • Live and work with horses in the beautiful tropical beach town of Vilankulo and explore the nearby Bazaruto Archipelago
  • Unbeatable beach rides along the warm Indian Ocean and horseback swims
  • Experience authentic Mozambican culture and day to day life
  • Try your hand at scuba diving, snorkelling, canoeing or kiteboarding on the blue seas on your days off
  • Become part of a family and help the team with their trail rides and make guests feel at home
  • Form close bonds with the horses and lifelong friendships with your fellow volunteers and the rest of the family
THE DESTINATION

Mozambique is a fascinating African country with a heady mix of African, Portuguese, and Arab cultures. It is a remarkably underrated and undiscovered destination with vast stretches of unspoiled coastline. The beautiful coastal town of Vilankulo finds itself on the coast, hugging the warm Indian Ocean. You will be surrounded by crystal clear, blue waters, home to incredible coral reefs and abundant marine life. The warm, tropical climate is ideal for long days on the beach and exploring the local countryside. Vilankulo is popular among holidaymakers who flock there to enjoy fantastic water sports and activities that satisfy the more adventurous traveller. It is also an ideal gateway to the breath-taking Bazaruto Archipelago.

DATES & RATES

2 Weeks
£1 300* / $1 700 per person sharing

3 Weeks
£1 790* / $2 350 per person sharing

4 Weeks
£2 250* /$2 950 per person sharing

Extra Week After – £460* / $600 per person

Private Room – £190* / $250 per week if available

*the rate might change slightly due to fluctuations in the exchange rate

Includes

  • Shared Accommodation
  • All meals (home-cooked and at local restaurants)
  • Weekly laundry service during your stay
  • Daily riding including schooling the trail horses, informal riding lessons, and trail rides
  • Airport pickup and transfers
  • Local SIM card

Excludes

  • International Flights & Visa
  • Comprehensive Travel and Medical Insurance
  • All items of a personal nature
  • Extra excursions and activities
  • Drinks & Snacks
  • Internet
WHAT TO EXPECT

At this working holiday, you will become part of the team that runs this authentic African beach trail stables and riding school. As there are grooms permanently employed, you will not be responsible for the daily care of the horses as such (although a helping hand is always more than welcome) Rather, your responsibilities will vary from riding and exercising the horses, helping to take guests on rides, or joining Mandy on trips to stock up on provisions. It is important that you are always friendly and helpful to the guests and staff alike. The more you participate, the more you will get out of this unique experience! Every day will be slightly different depending on the goings-on at the yard, but here are a few examples of what you may expect:

What you can expect from your experience

  • Supporting as a back-up rider on a safari ride where you may be expected to hold horses, lead canters, or ride at the back with the slower riders. It is important that you make sure the guests have the best possible experience, so a positive attitude is very important.
  • Assisting on day rides by greeting and preparing guests for their ride and taking payment after. On the ride, a high level of professionalism is required to manage guests and horses in the appropriate manner depending on circumstances.
  • Training and exercising horses on a daily basis, keeping them fit and happy
  • Depending on your experience, you may be asked to lend a hand with riding lessons
  • Helping with hosting guests at mealtimes, laying the table, preparing meals, offering drinks, and making small talk.
  • Accompanying the team on trips to town to get provisions from the local shops and markets, where you will have an insight into local life.
  • If you are interested, you can join in making soap (a side business) or giving conversational English classes at the local school.

Expectations

Age Limit: 19 years and older

Weight Limit: 85kg

Fitness: Being generally and riding fit ensures that you have the best possible experience, but you will also get fit with daily riding.

Responsibility: All volunteers are expected to act in a responsible manner, listen to instructions and ensure the guests have the best possible experience. Keep in mind that you are working with large animals, it is important to be alert to any dangers and uses your initiative and common sense at all times.

Interest: A keen love of horses is a must, but volunteers are expected to be enthusiastic and help out to the best of their ability.

Consideration: All volunteers are expected to treat everyone with consideration and respect, whether they are staff, guests or the local community.

Drugs and Alchohol: There is a zero-tolerance policy on drug use. Occasional drinks (especially the all-important sundowner drinks) are encouraged, but regular drunkenness will not be tolerated.

Paperwork:  All volunteers are responsible for their own travel costs, travel insurance (which is compulsory and must cover medical emergency and evacuation), Visas, and any necessary inoculations. You will also sign an indemnity form.

Team Spirit: You’ll be part of a small family-run operation and which can only work with co-operation between all those involved. On a final note this is Africa, patience and a good sense of humour is vital!

Accommodation and Meals

Volunteers stay in accommodation next to the stables. The rooms are simply furnished, but are clean and secure, with comfortable beds and mosquito nets. The twin rooms each have an en-suite bathroom. There is a lovely central area for cooking, socializing and relaxing. You will be a short walk to the beach and a 15-minute drive to Vilankulo town where you will find internet cafes, ATMs, supermarkets, restaurants, bars etc.

Meals are hearty and delicious, and plentiful! Some days you may have meals with guests, other times with your fellow volunteers. You may also be asked to lend a hand in the kitchen and budding chefs are always encouraged. Breakfast is usually a traditional English spread, while lunch or dinner might be spaghetti bolognaise, stir fry, peri-peri chicken or fresh sea fish all served with paõ (Portuguese white bread rolls baked in wood-fired ovens in villages)

Other Activities

Canoeing: The Guvuro River canoe trip is unquestionably one of the best activities in Vilankulo, with an ideal combination of unspoilt riverine and incredible birdlife to be explored

Scuba Diving and Snorkelling: The waters around the Bazaruto Archipelago are one of the largest marine conservation areas in the Indian Ocean. The reefs and clear waters offer some of the best diving in the world, with uncrowded dive sites with abundant marine life. With sites at a depth of 12 to 30m and visibility up to 40m you will discover protected reefs teeming with dolphins, humpback whales, whale sharks, sharks, manta and spotted eagle rays, green and turtles. In the shallow crystal clear waters, you’ll find abundant starfish, soft and hard corals, anemones, seahorses and a dazzling array of beautiful tropical fish.

Dhow trips (traditional sailing boat) Experience the wonder of a traditional sailing dhow gliding through the Bazaruto Archipelago. These boats are locally built by hand in the age-old method and comfortably furnished is the idyllic way. You might be lucky to spot whales, dolphins, turtles and the rare dugong.

Kiteboarding: During the windy season, the shallow waters and flat waves providing a great location for beginners or experienced kiters.

Community Projects

Mangalise Fishing Village – support the community with learning supplies such as books, pencils, and other school materials.

English – when there is time, volunteers can visit the nearby teacher college to help the adult students practice their conversational English. This is an incredible opportunity to listen to the locals and learn their stories cultural background. A great way to meet the locals!

Soap Making – Mandy enjoys making soap and provides to many resorts in the area. If you are interested, you are welcome to learn this wonderful skill. You may find it very therapeutic and enjoyable!

THE ACCOMMODATION

Volunteers stay in accommodation next to the stables and only a short walk to the beach. The rooms are simply furnished, but are clean and secure, with comfortable beds and mosquito nets. The twin rooms each have an en-suite bathroom and there is one private room available at an extra cost. There is a lovely central area for cooking, socializing and relaxing as well as a beautiful garden and pool for lazy afternoons.

QUICK FACTS
Vilankulo, Mozambique
Vilankulo International Airport
Open All Year
Min 2 weeks
Group Size: Max. 5
Intermediate and Above
View Gallery
2 Weeks: From £1 300 pp sharing

See Detailed Rates

SUITABLE RIDING LEVELS
Beginner
Novice
Intermediate
Intermediate Plus
Advanced
WHAT RIDING LEVEL AM I?
TOUR HIGHLIGHTS
  • Live and work with horses in the beautiful tropical beach town of Vilankulo and explore the nearby Bazaruto Archipelago
  • Unbeatable beach rides along the warm Indian Ocean and horseback swims
  • Experience authentic Mozambican culture and day to day life
  • Try your hand at scuba diving, snorkelling, canoeing or kiteboarding on the blue seas on your days off
  • Become part of a family and help the team with their trail rides and make guests feel at home
  • Form close bonds with the horses and lifelong friendships with your fellow volunteers and the rest of the family
DATES & RATES

2 Weeks
£1 300* / $1 700 per person sharing

3 Weeks
£1 790* / $2 350 per person sharing

4 Weeks
£2 250* /$2 950 per person sharing

Extra Week After – £460* / $600 per person

Private Room – £190* / $250 per week if available

*the rate might change slightly due to fluctuations in the exchange rate

Includes

  • Shared Accommodation
  • All meals (home-cooked and at local restaurants)
  • Weekly laundry service during your stay
  • Daily riding including schooling the trail horses, informal riding lessons, and trail rides
  • Airport pickup and transfers
  • Local SIM card

Excludes

  • International Flights & Visa
  • Comprehensive Travel and Medical Insurance
  • All items of a personal nature
  • Extra excursions and activities
  • Drinks & Snacks
  • Internet
WHAT THEY’RE SAYING

No two days were the same during my stay in Vilankulo which meant that my 3 weeks flew by far, far too quickly. From riding along the stunning beach or practicing conversational English with local students, to having drinks at the bar, the atmosphere was brilliantly relaxed thanks to the culture in general but also due to Pat and Mandy’s laidback , extremely welcoming approach and their great sense of humour. I’m sure anyone who has an interest in horses or wants to do something completely different will have a fantastic time; riding in such a beautiful setting, meeting other like-minded volunteers, sampling the local nightlife, going on snorkelling trips or doing any of the other activities that Pat and Mandy encourage you to experience to ensure you have the best stay possible. Beautiful surroundings, wonderful horses and lovely people meant that I had an amazing experience that really lived up to the idyllic pictures and all the incredibly positive things I was told by previous volunteers. My only regret is that I wasn’t there for longer!

KateVilankulo Working Holiday, Mozambique
READ MORE REVIEWS

How we care for our horses

Our horseback adventures are hand-picked for their quality and care of their horses. Here’s how the horses are kept in tip-top shape for your safaris. Our horses are on top of the hierarchy and receive very special care:
  • The horses care and well-being take precedence ensuring that they are responsive, alert, tough and fit.
  • Our riding horses are schooled and looked after by Pat, they have lovely calm temperaments and react easily and lightly to the aids.
  • Horses have a varied routine, with schooling, beach rides and rest days in large paddocks.
  • Bridles are uncomplicated with single jointed & french link snaffle bits which are cleaned daily.

Please let us know if you have any more questions around this.

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