21 October, 2007

Horse Riding in the sea, Kalamaki, Corfu

Corfu 2007 - #123
Ah, now one of the real highlights of the break, horse riding over the hills at Kalamaki beach (and actually riding the horses into that crystal clear ocean, like something out of a movie!)...we decided to compare prices between the First Choice offerings and the local agent (pictured above), it's really easy to find, just leave the Blue Bay resort by the gate just at the side of the pool bar, turn left, walk about 100 yards and it's just to the left of the little supermarket (it of the inflatables), be warned though, it's only open for a couple of hours in the morning and a couple of hours in the evening (but it's so near the resort it's not like you will have wasted much time if you find it closed)...anyway, suffice it to say, the trips were all *considerably* cheaper from the independent place by the beach, so if you are going to be making any trips out, this is definitely the place to come-
Corfu 2007 - #124
At the pre-arranged time, Flyingpops and I walked down to the travel agent and sat waiting to be picked up (it's quite normal, by the way, for any form of scheduled transport you are expecting in Corfu to be anything up to twenty minutes late) but we were more than a little suprised when a guy turned up in a tiny, battered white hatchback (forget a coach, we weren't even afforded a taxi for this trip!) and waved to us from the window yelling "Horses!", at which Flyingpops gave me a Spock-type look and muttered "You *have* to be joking"...
Corfu 2007 - #125
Anyway, he was a nice chap, and we quickly warmed to him, largely thanks to his English being excellent, and the fact that his smile was infectious, the place itself was actually nearer the resort even than Kassiopi, so within ten minutes flat we found ourselves in a narrow wooded valley, leaving any sign of apartments behind, and then pulling into a beautiful, ancient olive grove-
Corfu 2007 - #138
Corfu 2007 - #126
Corfu 2007 - #127
- fitted out with the appropriate headgear -
Corfu 2007 - #128
- allocated to horses (it *could* be my imagination but I thought mine looked back at me with a bit of a "put out" sort of face at having to carry quite so much weight) -
Corfu 2007 - #133
- and we were then given a crash course in horse-steering (I've been riding before, but many, many years ago and as part of a stable (so the horses just kind of automatically followed the one in front without you having too much say in the matter), this was different)...it was really interesting to have an animal just do exactly what you wanted and just when you wanted it, we were the only two people on this particular trip, well, us and our guide -
Corfu 2007 - #130
- a really friendly Brit ex-pat who had married a local, explained that one had to "be firm" with the horses (as they understood very well when someone didn't know what they were doing and would take liberties), but also make sure that we kept a safe distance between each other (so they didn't feel under pressure), we set a leasurely pace, climbing to the top of one of the local peaks, our guide pointing out local flora and fauna and when we had spectacular views, he pointed out the landmarks, then we made our way down to the beach, just as the sun was starting to set, and we urged our horses into the ocean, where we sat, listening to the gentle sound of the waves hitting the shore and watched the sun creep behind the mountains -
Corfu 2007 - #131


Ys said...

Aww that sounded really nice. I haven't been riding in years! got booted off one too many times ;) My parents still have horses, though, so I do take them out for walks when an extra hand is needed.

I'm glad you had such a good time!

¨°º©[ Fink ]©º°¨ said...

I *do* love horses, but I must admit I'm not 100% confident with them...everything aside though, this ride was an absolute dream...how many people get to ride a horse through the waves at sunset...I can't help but feel fortunate... :)