It’s totally normal to be a bit nervous for your first horse riding holiday! It’s also super understandable to be nervous to go abroad for the first time, to travel alone or to visit a country or continent you’ve never been before. This shouldn't stop you from seeing and experiencing this beautiful world, whether it be on horseback or not. In this blog I’ll be telling you all about the tips and tricks for traveling safely and confidently so that you’re excited to go out and go on an amazing Hooves Around The World trip.
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If you are feeling a bit nervous about your first trip, it might be nice to travel with a group of friends or friendly strangers! We don’t all have friends who want to travel the world or ride horses abroad. I did not have a lot of friends with these interests when I first started traveling and horse riding around the world. If you do have a group, you can definitely travel together to make you all feel a bit more secure. However, if you don’t, Hooves Around The World organises trips and meet-ups in several countries around the world. In October each year, we travel to Mexico with a group of adventurers and do an eight day horse riding trip in the Mexican highlands. This year we will be going from 13 to 20 and 21 to 28 October, and there is still space for more people to join! We all get to know each other beforehand in our WhatsApp group, we coordinate flights and meet each other at the airport in Mexico City to travel to our destination together. People also meet up in their home countries if they live close together and fly to Mexico City airport together! It’s a lovely way to meet like minded people and feel safe and confident while traveling, whether it be for the first time or not. I also personally come with on these meet-up trips, and usually a few other experienced travellers come with as well, so everyone is more than welcome to ask all their questions in the group chat. There is always someone able to help you out! If you’d like to know more about these types of trips and which ones are still available for this year or the next, please reach out to me and I’ll make sure you get to go on your trip of a lifetime - happy and safe!
Also read: what to expect traveling solo on a horse riding holiday
We all want our trips to run smoothly and never get into any trouble whatsoever. However, it’s always good to be well prepared just in case things do go sideways, whether it be a problem with your health, an accident, lost luggage or anything else. Of course we all aim to make our trips as safe as possible, and therefore you are required to have travel insurance. There are lots of options and travel insurance does not have to be expensive, there are a great number of options that protect you very well and don’t cost you an arm and a leg. It’s also always important to clarify that you need your insurance plan to cover dangerous activities as horse riding is often classed as such. Have a look on the website of TravelInsurance here! They offer fantastic help and you can fill in all details for your trip easily and receive your quote straight away. Their website is very easy to navigate and on their blog they give great travel tips. Make sure to check them out here.
When traveling to new countries, there are guidelines about which vaccinations are recommended and which are needed for entry. This differs per country. Below you can find which vaccinations you’ll need and which ones are recommended for each Hooves Around The World destination.
The recommended (but not needed for entry) vaccinations for Mexico are Hepatitis A, DTP and Rabies. A Hepatitis B vaccination is only recommended when working with syringes or if you will be coming into contact with blood in any other way through for example your job. There is Chikungunya, Zika virus, Dengue fever and Malaria present in Mexico. However, these diseases are not present at the location where the Hooves Around The World trips are held. If you are planning on seeing more of Mexico, you’ll need a good mosquito repellent.
For Zimbabwe, the same vaccinations are recommended as for Mexico. A freshwater disease called Schistosomiasis is also prevalent but the vaccine is only recommended if you want to go swimming in freshwater lakes. A vaccination against Tuberculosis is recommended only for stays over 3 months. If you are not protected against measles yet, the MMR vaccine is also recommended. The only required vaccine for entry is Yellow Fever, however this is only if you are traveling from a country where Yellow Fever is prevalent. There is no Yellow Fever in Zimbabwe and they would like to keep it that way!
Egypt recommends the same vaccinations as Zimbabwe, also the Yellow Fever vaccine is only required for entry if you are coming from a country where Yellow Fever is prevalent. There is no Malaria in Egypt, but there is Zika virus, Dengue fever and Chikungunya, so bring mosquito repellant.
Here the recommendations are exactly the same as for Zimbabwe, and the same goes for the required Yellow Fever vaccination if traveling from a country where it is prevalent.
Recommended vaccinations are Hepatitis A, DTP and Rabies. Hepatitis B is again only recommended if you will be coming into contact with blood through for example your job. There is Malaria present so use a good mosquito repellent. The freshwater disease Schistosomiasis is also prevalent and vaccination is only recommended if coming into contact with freshwater lakes, so swimming in the sea is completely fine without the vaccine.
Prevalent diseases in Argentina are Chikungunya, Hepatitis A, Dengue fever, DTP, Rabies and Zika virus. Protect yourself accordingly for each as mentioned for the above countries. In this country Yellow Fever is prevalent so the vaccination is recommended, however not needed for entry.
Covid vaccination guidelines for entry are constantly changing and some countries still require a negative PCR test. Some countries also do not require a covid vaccination. If you have any worries about this please send me a message and I will have a look at the ever changing guidelines for you.
However daunting it may be, please don’t let this list scare you off, but do protect yourself properly! I’ve had all these vaccines and have never been sick from the vaccines and never had any health problems when traveling abroad. If you do have any concerns please reach out to me. Also be reminded, these vaccinations are not required (besides Yellow Fever for some) but they are highly recommended!
Please do not hesitate to contact me here or on instagram with any questions you might have about getting the right travel insurance or other preparations for your safe horse riding holiday. I am more than happy to help!
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